Has anyone taken the new fast train from Paris to Barcelona. Do you still have to change trains in Figueres? It is a new route and I can not get accurate information. Also I cannot find out if and where it stops. Please advise. Going next September. I was thinking of stopping in France after I left Paris but not sure how that will work.
Nonstop high-speed service from Paris to Barcelona, long announced, has not yet begun.
It is supposed to be operational by next fall.
It's possible that specific details may not be available on the new Paris-Barcelona route until early next year. If you're planning to stop somewhere else in France prior to Barcelona, just look for TGV information on the current schedules.
If you decide to go directly from Paris to Barcelona, you might consider a budget flight as it will be much faster and therefore a more efficient use of your holiday time. Have a look at either EasyJet or Vueling for costs and other information.
I did a search on TGV.com a month out and got Gare de Lyon 0715 - Figueres Vilafant 1241 - Barcelona Sants 1348 for €79 prem fare. I've read that Fig - Barcelona TGV was to begin this fall but apparently it's been delayed. The TGV goes to Avignon, Nimes, Montpelier, Narbonne and Perpignan on your route.
The news page on The Man in Seat 61 is the best place to find out about the new service. Here's the latest:
Direct Paris-Barcelona TGVs postponed again...
Direct Paris-Barcelona TGVs will not now start on 15 December with the new pan-European timetable. It's been put back again until 2014. The present change-at-Figueres service will continue, although it's still not open for booking yet as I write this (on 1 November) for any date after the timetable change. Elipsos is likely to continue running on Fri, Sun & Mon nights southbound, Thur, Fri & Sun nights northbound, but is also late opening for booking. UPDATE: Or has this changed yet again? One report and several rumours suggest TGVs may indeed start on 15 December, and that there may be a formal announcement on 27 November. But after so many rumours, expect them when you see them.
When it does commence, my Thomas Cook European Rail Timetable suggests there will be an 07.15 departure from Paris Gare de Lyon, stopping at Nimes (10.09), Montpellier (10.37), Narbonne (11.35), Perpignan (12.16), Figueres Vilafant (12.35), Girona (12.51) and Barcelona Sants (13.32) with similar journey times for a daily 14.07 and a Fri/Sat/Sun 16.07 departure, but everything will be more certain when the service becomes available for booking.
Let's just hope that SNCF conducted a more thorough procurement evaluation than NMBS and NS when they bought their kit for the now-infamous Fyra debacle.