Easy travelling with Eurostar between UK and France

Created in 1994, Eurostar is a high-speed train service between London and Paris. Since 2007, Saint-Pancras is the new Eurostar station in London. It is the final stop on services coming from Paris’s Gare du Nord, Lille Europe (France) and Bruxelles-Midi (Belgium).
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Eurostar is one of the fastest and most comfortable ways to travel across Europe, with 3 different travel classes. In Business Premier and Leisure select classes, travellers enjoy on-board meals served at their seats and a variety of dishes and drinks available at the bar-buffet. Premier travellers also benefit from numerous advantages, such as shorter check-ins, wireless internet or lounge access before departure. With a wide service offer and great efficiency (96% of the trains arrived on time in 2009), Eurostar is growing more successful each year, welcoming more than 100 million customers on board in August 2009, with about 50 trains taking the tunnel every day. Within 16 years of existence, Eurostar’s customer number has risen from 3 to 9.2 million.
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Since November 2007, Eurostar’s network has undergone several modifications aiming at increasing the speed of trips. Thanks to these works, who have tremendously boosted tourism on the European scale, it now only takes 2 hours and 15 minutes to go from central London to central Paris, faster and cheaper than air travel, with an average speed of 186.4 miles per hour.
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Assuming your destination is the sunny city of Nice, the Eurostar service will take you to Lille in 1 hour and 20 minutes, and you can take a high-speed train (TGV) nonstop from Lille to Nice, with a trip of about 7 hours and 22 minutes. Therefore, within less than 9 hours you can go from London to Nice with only one stop at Lille and for less than £160. For seasoned travellers, who aren’t afraid of changing stations, it is possible to go from London to Nice within 8 hours and 50 minutes with a railway station in Paris, Lyon or Marseille.
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According to route-planning site Mappy.com, it takes about 13 hours and a half to drive from central London to central Nice, with costs reaching up to £240. Is it really necessary to point out how exhausting and expensive undertaking such a journey might be?
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As for air travel, prices can be matched if the booking is done weeks in advance, but the trip is shorter and more convenient with Eurostar, as trains take you directly in city centres, whereas travelling through busy airports often requires long check-ins and commuting to finally reach the final destination. For example, it takes 50 minutes to go from central Paris to Charles de Gaulle airport, and 75 minutes to go from Stansted airport to Victoria station in London.  Here’s another example: a flight to Nice from London’s Luton airport takes about 2 hours and 30 minutes. If you take commuting and then checking-in into account, with almost 50 minutes on the bus on your way to Luton, 120 minutes waiting to checking, 2 hours and 30 minutes flying, and then 20 minutes to go from Nice airport to the city centre, you can spend about 5 hours and 40 minutes sitting around, or walking from one platform to another.
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Let’s not also forget one crucial upside when taking Eurostar trains, which is unlimited luggage. Indeed, although your belongings on Eurostar services are searched, you can take as many suitcases as you like with you, which is rather convenient for long holidays abroad. Families and couples won’t have the trouble of counting how many clothes everybody’s allowed to bring, and how many times it is necessary to hop on and off trains, buses and planes. Eurostar is therefore a fast, comfortable and convenient way to travel, which will take you to Paris for a planned holiday or on a whim, for a day or two.
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This entry was posted on Tuesday, July 6th, 2010 at 5:50 pm and is filed under Living in France, Property in Paris, Property in Provence Cote d Azur, Removal, Retiring to France, Travel in France, Viewing trip to France . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

One Response to “Easy travelling with Eurostar between UK and France”

  1. London Paris Train Says:

    Great article. The Eurostar train service is an excellent way to travel, as is the French rail network, especially the TGV. What with possible airline strikes, volcanic ash clouds, and tight airport security, a 2 hour journey from London to Paris by train always looks the best option to me.


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