We will be flying to Paris CDG and will take the high speed train to Avignon from the airport. We won't have checked bags. Any suggestions on how much time to allow to make it on time to the train? If we miss our train is the ticket useable on a later train if there is room?
Hello, "neighbor". It may take less time, but you should allow up to an hour to clear immigration/passport control. If you book advance discount fare tickets, they will only be good for the departure time specified and they are non-exchangeable and non-refundable. If you book full fare tickets, you can exchange them for tickets on the next train, so long as you depart from the same station as was specified on the original tickets. (This means that you cannot go into Paris and exchange the tickets for a train departing from Gare de Lyon.) Booking online at tgv-europe.com will allow you to print your own tickets and you won't have to stand in line at the CDG TGV station to retrieve them. What time is your flight scheduled to arrive?
As you will see on www.tgv-europe.com, there are several types of tickets available to Avignon. The cheapest are non-refundable; others allow flexibility. Even with those, if you miss the train you had reserved you will have to deal with an agent to get a sseat reservation for the subsequent ride. PS: As an American, choose any county other than the US when using the TGV site. It won't affect ticket delivery but will save you from being bumped to the less useful RailEurope site. As to guessing how much time to allow for going through the admissions process and then moving to the SNCF station in Terminal Two, it will always be guesswork at CdG, especially since you haven't said which terminal you will arrive at. It's no great hardship to have to wait an hour or two for your train, given the cafes and restaurants that will help the time go by. www.aeroportsdeParis.fr
Enjoy Avignon and the train ride too.
It's not just going through passport control, but also just getting to the terminal from the plane. Your plane may have a long taxi followed by stopping away from the terminal. You then take a shuttle to the terminal and you may not be on the first shuttle to leave the plane unless you are in 1st or business.
Thanks all. We will make sure we have a couple of hours at least. And thanks for the info about the tickets.
Leaving a couple of extra hours makes sense, although the biggest variable is probably any flight delay, not a delay at immigration/customs. Last month we were out of CDG airport about 1/2 hour after our plane landed.
Things have recently changed for the better on the tgv-europe site! Now when one goes to the home page and is asked to select a country of residence, one doesn't have to avoid choosing the US. Just click on the "America" tab on the left-hand side of the page which includes all countries in North, Central, and South America. Then choose France as your ticket collection country. If you are allowed to print your own tickets, do so. Otherwise choose the option of picking them up at any SNCF station in France.