All you need to know about ski holidays by train

TGV Lyria to Geneva - suddently cancelled

Thu 15 October, 2015

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By: 
Daniel Elkan

Don't shoot the messenger: you can find this out by phoning Eurostar's call centre (01233 617 575), and any of the staff there will confirm the bad news:

The TGV Lyria train from Lille to Geneva has been cancelled.  Apparently,  SNCF Lyria informed Eurostar only last night (less than 24 hours before the tickets were due on sale!). That's a bit bonkers.

The cancellation is bad news, but it isn't surprising.

When, a year ago, Eurostar and SNCF Lyria jointly launched the service from London to Geneva, via Lille, the timetable was the obvious flaw.

Duration wise, it was good - and would give the plane journey a run for its money.  Why mess about bored in airport queues when you could travel city-centre to city-centre in comfort. Train wins, hands down.

The problem was, the timetable.  You didn't arrive in Geneva until 8pm, too late too connect by train to other Swiss resorts - and too late for dinner wherever you were going.  Then, the following Saturday, the train departed Geneve at 08:30am.  Again, too early to connect with.

SNCF Lyria have blamed the cancelled train - which now won't run at all in winter, on lack of demand.  Had they run an attractive timetable, there would have been plenty of demand.

Did they consult with any skiers first? Who knows.

However, you can still get to Geneva from London via Paris - there are multiple Paris - Geneva services daily -  and changing in Paris is easy: http://youtu.be/gQHmZu72oOI

And for French resorts near Geneva, there is also the new Lyon route, which is proving popular: http://www.snowcarbon.co.uk/train-guides/insider-tips/eurostar-french-alps-lyon