I'm planning on taking three kid, 12, 14, and 16 to Europe this summer, and I plan to take a train from Lond to Paris. Should I wait until I get there to purchase the tix or should I do that now online? I have no idea which train to take also, so any help would be nice.
Nancy, there is only one train to take and it is the Eurostar which goes under the English Channel. The journey is 2 hrs 15 mins, but France is 1 hour ahead of the UK so set your watches ahead on the journey. Buy your tickets on line at eurostar.com, 90 days ahead for cheapest prices. Buying the tickets when you are in London will be very expensive. The Eurostar leaves form St.Pancras Station in London and arrives at the Gare du Nord in Paris.
Actually, England is an hour BEHIND France, so you would set your watch back an hour. Buy your tickets ahead for the best price.
Oops...in my haste I didn't read your post carefully enough so see you are going from London to Paris. You would set your watch ahead one hour. Sorry about that. Still, buy the tickets ahead.
You can book up to 120 days (not 90 days) in advance at www.eurostar.com. Because of the current exchange rate, your tickets will be cheaper if you book on the UK version of the site rather than on the US version. (For example, the cheapest single adult fare on the US site is $98. If you book on the UK site, the cheapest fare is £51--which at today's exchange rate equals $75.) If you've already visited the site, clear the cookies on your Web browser and register on the site again, this time as a resident of the UK. Book ASAP to get the lowest fares.
Thank you all for your helpful suggestions. I really appreciate it!
Nancy...also check out Rail Europe. There are many on here who dont like it---but I've had great success--frequently saving money over Eurostars own site.
This past Xmas, we travelled both ways and saved 20 bucks per ticket using Rail Europe's service.
btw the kids will love this train ride. There are a couple of places along the route where the train is right beside a freeway..and the cars look like they're standing still.
Larson...that's interesting. How much did you pay for the Eurostar tickets? I've not heard of anyone getting Eurostar tickets cheaper at RailEurope. PM if you wish.
I assume you're referring to the EuroStar (chunnel) - do it now! The farther ahead the better, tho it's probably late for real bargains; it can fill up in the summer. Do a search for Eurostar - there's only one London-Paris route!
Book now, ,rates go up and up as date approaches. I booked for end of July about 2 months ago and paid 70 GBP return. Play with dates and times .. even at different times of the day the rates can differ. I have taken the Eurostar with my 14 yr old also. He loved it.Journey is actually 2 1/2 hours long.
Bring snacks if going second class( which btw is absolutely fine, just no meal included, and there is a snack stand , but food is not great, bagged lunch or premade sandwiches.etc)
Both times I used Eurostar site for better rates then RailEurope, but I would check both sites.
I purchased mine well in advance through the RS website, and had tickets in hand in a matter of a few days.
I love this question because last week, I did much research on this. I emailed the Rick Steves rail department. They told me the best way is to buy the tickets through them for $156 round trip. I think I'll be doing that for my October trip. I feel safer buying from an American website paying in US dollars, and I trust Rick Steves' people. So I guess I'll do it that way unless if some of you have a better idea. But I'm not leaving until October, so I do have some time to think about this some more.
Lisa...as Tim noted earlier in this string, tickets now are going for about $75 U.S. Many of us have safely booked with Eurostar in the past....I've never heard of a problem with them. I'm not sure if my loyalty to RS would stretch to paying twice as much! ;)
Thank you Norm! So that price is for a round trip. Great!
Hey, I just looked at the Eurostar site. They don't list October yet, but I looked at September just to get an idea. It said only 29.50 Euro one way. I'll need a round trip. Almost 60 euro a round trip is great! I'll need to figure this out, but I guess it could be a total of $75. That sure beats $159!
Thanks Tim and Norm!
PS. I just looked online,so 60 euro is $83.99. That's still a good deal!
what? France is an hour ahead of England? We are taking the ferry across then renting a car in Calais. But the rental agency closes from 12-2 for lunch (go figure) so when we get there via the ferry at 11am it will be noon in France? So we have to leave England even earlier?
Yes, Jeff, it is. Is 11 am the time the ferry company gives for docking in France? If so, that's French time, not UK.
I've taken the ES London-Paris 6 times roundtrip. Last trip I bought my tix thru the Eurostar website and saved myself the $15 delivery fee charged by ETBD. It was super-easy to print out my boarding passes at St Pancras Station (London). I just checked the Eurostar.com website and for dates in Sept 09, the "non-flexible" tix are going for 29.5GBP each way London-Paris. That's about half what is quoted on the ETBD site. Non-flexible means no changes, returns, etc. so you have to be sure of your trip. And be sure to check the fine-print regulations.