Rail Travel from Basel to Paris

Finishing Rhine River Cruise in Basel on December 13, 2013 want to travel by rail to Paris how many transfers & cost?

Posted by Larry
Elk Grove, CA, USA
6699 posts

Claudia, roughly 1 of 3 runs from Basel to Paris is a direct train run. The other two runs have one train change. The direct train runs are more expensive. You can buy non-refundable tickets online right now for as low as 40 Euro for the 1 train change runs and 65Euro for the direct runs. The French website is www.tgv-europe.com. Just don't the USA as your Ticket Collection Country. If you do, the website will switch you to RailEurope which you do not want. Great Britain, Argentina or any other country. Not to worry. You can print out your tickets at home within minutes after making the purchase. No need to go to another country to pick up your tickets. Normal fare is about 93Euro for the 1 train change run and about 117Euro for the direct train run. You can also buy the non-refundable tickets from the Swiss at www.sbb.ch. They want 50 CHF for the 1 train change run and 95CHF for the direct train runs.

Posted by Southam
Windsor, Ontario, Canada
910 posts

For schedules but not tickets www.bahn.com For all-round advice: www.seat61.com For your specific trip you can go TGV Lyria, which as the name implies is a joint Swiss-French operation. http://www.tgv-lyria.com/main/FCK/File/site_en/home/home_suisse_france.asp
It's fairly straightforward to find the schedules although it takes a lot of mouse-clicks to pick your train, reserve your seat and pay for your order, which you should be able to print out at home. Some trains are direct, while others require a change. My choice would be the one with least hassle.

Posted by Ken
Vernon, Canada
17738 posts

Claudia, There are numerous trains every day from Basel to Paris. I'd suggest using a direct TGV if possible, as that will provide the shortest travel time (the trains run at up to 300 kmH). If using a TGV train, travel time will be ~3 hours, you'll usually arrive at either Paris Gare de Lyon or Paris Est, and the current fare is shown as CHF 139 PP. You should be able to get cheaper fares with pre-purchase on either the SNCF or SBB websites. I don't usually pre-purchase tickets, but I'm sure the others will be able to provide tips on buying from those websites. Happy travels!

Posted by Fred
San Francisco
2685 posts

Hi, The way I would go from Basel to Paris, a very nice ride, requires only one transfer, ie, at Frankfurt Hbf. Take the morning ICE train Basel to Frankfurt Hbf, then transfer to the ICE dep 1301 to Paris Est. You'll be there by 16:50.

Posted by Tim
Minneapolis, MN, USA
8640 posts

Booked far enough in advance (up to 90 days allowed) on tgv-europe.com, you can get a discount fare as low as €39 for a direct TGV. The cheapest tickets sell out fast so you may not find any at that price for 13 December. On the home page remove the check mark from the "Direct trains only" box if you want to see all departure times. On the same page choose France as your ticket collection country. You'll be able to print your own tickets.