All you need to know about ski holidays by train

Inside track - the Snowcarbon blog



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6th June 2020
It's good to see that sleeper-train services are re-opening for the summer. That bodes well for winter, of course, when overnight options may be an increasingly sought-after way to reach the slopes.


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5th June 2020
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If you have a Eurostar voucher and would prefer a refund, it seems that you can now convert it. Here's how.


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21st May 2020
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With skiers starting to think about winter 2020-21, there are still more questions than answers. So let us know yours.


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4th May 2020
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The unique Snowcarbon Journey Planner is updated for 2020-21 winter season, to enable you to plan train journeys to ski resorts well in advance.


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21st March 2020
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We've been investigating what refunds are due to skiers who can no longer travel this season. And we have boiled cabbage to thank for it.


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18th March 2020
Advice about rail-travel refunds is circulating that is already out of date. So take it with a pinch of salt, because better news (in terms of refunds) may be right around the corner.


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17th March 2020
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Since the rest of the ski season has now been cancelled due to coronavirus, If you have independent train travel booked for dates this March or April you'll be wanting to ge a refund from the rail company or ticket provider. We are trying to gather info about how to do this.


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15th March 2020
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The sudden closure of all French ski resorts, following Italian, Austrian and Swiss resorts - has caught skiers by surprise and left thousands stranded. Are you stranded?


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5th March 2020
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Robbie Thorne, son of legendary ski writer Patrick Thorne, travelled from Inverness to Crans Montana by train recently. He's written such a brilliant of the journey and the rationale for it, that we are really honoured to have it on our blog.


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25th February 2020
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Sometimes a taxi is right; sometimes just getting on the RER is right. Here's an account of crossing Paris by RER.


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12th February 2020
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No country does train travel like Switzerland. At the end of some fantastic journeys, like some wonderful resorts. Here are some of the things we've learned travelling to them.


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19th January 2020
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Shared station-to-resort transfers can help solo travellers, couples and small groups can save pollution and save money.


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9th January 2020
The French train strikes continue. And it isn't always easy to find out about whether trains will run, whether your journey is affected, and what to do if you want to rebook your train or need a refund. So here's a guide.


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2nd January 2020
The French train strikes continue. When they end is not known yet. Here's the latest info that we've found.


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23rd December 2019
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We've taken a look at some of the bus transfers from Oulx and Briancon to the ski resorts of Montgenevre and Serre Chevalier


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19th December 2019
For transfer from Aime la Plagne station to the villages of La Plagne, here's some research we did on some of the bus connections.


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18th December 2019
Here's a guide about the bus connections from Moutiers station to the ski resorts that it serves.


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16th December 2019
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What are the bus connections like for resorts in the Tarentaise region of France? We've created an at-a-glance guide, to help.


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14th December 2019
The French train strikes are continuing. Here's what we know so far.


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14th December 2019
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We've been battling to get more bus timetables to be published in English, with varying degrees of success


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5th December 2019
Personally, I’m glad to see the back of Black Friday, as are lots of people I know. Perhaps you feel this way too.


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5th December 2019

Eurotunnel is carrying out essential engineering work on the Channel Tunnel on two dates this winter. The dates are:



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25th November 2019
There are SNCF strikes on 5th and 6th December. Here's what we know so far (which is not very much).


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23rd October 2019
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Few people realise this, but you can reach some ski resorts in France with train journeys via Lille instead of Paris. This is particularly useful for peak dates, when seats on direct or via-Paris routes may be running out.


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17th October 2019
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If you believed the hype, you'd think that booking online was easy and always gives you the best fares and journey. But rail-booking websites frequently fail the traveller too. Here's why.


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14th October 2019
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A new way to reach Austria's slopes by sleeper train? Two extra days on the slopes, and less carbon getting there. Yes, tis true...


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12th October 2019
Catered ski chalets are a fantastic way to enjoy the Alps. And we know lots of great independent ones that we can recommend.


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2nd October 2019
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Indirect Journeys On Sale 3rd October (for travel 15th Dec - 5th Jan)
Staff fitting ski equipment to chalet guest

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22nd September 2019
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On transfer days, equipment rental shops are often busy. But getting rental equipment delivered to your accommodation takes the stress out of the process.


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18th September 2019
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When it comes to booking rail travel to ski resorts, expert rail-booking agencies are a very good way to secure tickets for the best prices, and save time and hassle


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16th September 2019
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Stopping in Paris on the outbound journey or on your return journey can work really well. Indeed, counterintuitively, it can mean extra time in resort, and extra days on the slopes


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14th August 2019
If you'd like to book tickets on the Eurostar Ski Train in order to travel to the ski resort of La Plagne, you might want to read this before using Eurostar's website.
Eurostar Ski Train

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10th July 2019
It's now confirmed that the Eurostar Ski Train goes on sale at 8am on Wednesday 17th July 2019. Here are 12 things you might find useful to know about the Eurostar Ski Train for the 2019-20 season.


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8th July 2019
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The provisional date for the Eurostar Ski Train to go on sale is Wednesday 17th July at 8am. To understand why this is a provisional date, and what to do next, read on...


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2nd July 2019
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The date that the Eurostar Ski Train will go on sale for the 2019-20 season has not been announced yet. Sign up to the Snowcarbon newsletter to be the first to know.


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30th June 2019
For two years, bus timetable pdfs for the popular Tarentaise region were published only in French, and not translated in English. Well for 2019-20 they will definitely be published in English. That's good news.


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23rd June 2019
A question that skiers often ask is: "Can we save money by travelling with a Eurostar and then a TGV via Paris, instead of on the Eurostar Ski Train. Here are some thoughts.


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20th June 2019
Train journeys to the Alps might be fantastic, but what is the best way to book them? We've created resort-specific booking guides to help you know when to book, how to book and who to book with.


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24th May 2019
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Lots of skiers ask whether the Eurostar Ski Train will run at Easter 2020. So here's what we know, and what you can do.


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8th May 2019
A dog, Louis, reading the European Rail Map - what a good boy! Because this map is definitely your best friend when it comes to train travel.


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30th April 2019
For skiers on the overnight Eurostar Ski Train, it seems that Eurostar's eye mask is not fit for purpose.


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12th April 2019
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The Snowcarbon Journey Planner 2019-20 season is already ready! But what advantage does it serve skiers - what problem does it solve?


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6th April 2019
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A number of ski resorts in the French Alps have staged a protest against Brexit. Understandable, since Brexit will be a disaster for the ski industry.


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2nd April 2019
Skier Neale Upstone wrote about his experience of finding empty seats on the overnight Eurostar Ski Train. There's a lot more that could be done so that skiers can - and want to - book this train.


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13th March 2019
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It's great to read the emails coming in from skiers who are already hungry to get back to the slopes in 2019-20, and that's before this season has even finished!

I'm helping each enquiry that comes in, but will shortly be creating the 2019-20 Snowcarbon Jourey Planner so that you can start planning journeys ahead.

I'm also going through all the guides on the site to improve them and add new ones, so that the advice on the site becomes more useful.



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18th January 2019
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Rows and rows of empty first-class seats on a TGV train bound for the Alps on a Saturday morning? Something must be wrong.


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5th November 2018
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Tickets for indirect journeys to the Alps, between 8th January and 10thMarch 2019, will go on sale on Tuesday 6th November.


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17th October 2018
A glitch in Eurostar's booking system means that skiers wanting to book the direct Eurostar Ski Train to La Plagne get told that the return journey is unavailable. But not you. You know better.


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13th October 2018
People often ask whether it's better to book Eurostars first, before TGVs go on sale. But it's better to wait and book them as one journey.


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8th October 2018
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OUI.sncf puts it's TGV trains on sale on Thursday 11th October. That means that from that date, you can book journey dates from 9th December 2019 up until 7th January 2019


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30th August 2018
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Rail companies have made it more difficult to book tickets by phone. But there are still options (so that you don't go bonkers online).


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7th August 2018
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The Ski Train for 2018-19 has been on sale for a couple of weeks now. It is enduringly popular, but there are some useful things to know...


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26th May 2018
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The direct Eurostar service to Lyon looks like it won't be running for winter 2018-19. But Snowcarbon and ski resort tourist offices are campaigning to bring it back.


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21st May 2018
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Eurostar Ski Train and snow train tickets for 2018-19 may not be on sale yet. But you can still find out a fairly accurate guestimate of what the prices will be.


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26th April 2018
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This magnificent photo, from one of the Your Stories sent in about ski holidays by train this season, really is worth 1,000 words. And it was taken at Easter, to boot!


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27th February 2018
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The Your Stories section is one of the most important things on Snowcarbon. Here's why - and how to get involved.


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14th February 2018
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In the 2017-18 ski season, the organisation that governs the buses in the Tarentaise decided not to publish them in English anymore. That's crazy - and needs to change.


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7th January 2018
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The sleeper train from Paris to Briancon is the only remaining sleeper-train service to French resorts. But the way that SNCF is running it has caused much frustration amongst those trying to book and travel on it.


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3rd January 2018
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The 'Ask Daniel' service can help you find the best holiday options, most efficiently. And it's going from strength to strength.


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11th November 2017
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Want to travel on the remaining sleeper train service from Paris? SNCF will do their best to frustrate you - so here's what you need to know


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7th November 2017
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Trains have just gone on sale for travel from January 13th - March 12th 2018 - here's what I've found so far


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25th October 2017
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We've helped Ben's Bus launch a shared-transfer service, the Paris Ski Shuttle, which will help skiers connect between train stations in Paris.


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8th October 2017
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Eurostar has cancelled the 2017-18 winter season via-Lyon service. This is a huge disappointment as it was very useful to skiers. Why did this happen, and what can be done?


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8th October 2017
Tickets for Indirect train journeys to ski resorts go on sale from 5am (approx time) on Thursday 12 October 2017. Here’s the lowdown on what you can book and the best way to do it.


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19th July 2017
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The daytime Eurostar Ski Train has sold out for February half term in a record two hours. But if you want to get to the resorts that it serves, there are other good options too.


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12th July 2017
The Eurostar Ski Train goes on sale at 8am on Wednesday 19th July, for the whole winter 2017-18 season. Here's what you need to know.


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29th June 2017
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The Eurostar Ski Train will go on sale in mid-July, but the exact date hasn't been announced yet


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7th May 2017
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We researched prices and durations of taxi transfer to a number of popular ski resort, so that you can check at a glance.


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26th February 2017
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If you are keen to get a fantastic ski holiday by train in place for 2017-18, the good news is that you can start planning and booking now


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27th December 2016
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The Paris Stopover actually takes longer, and yet gets you into resort earlier..as our new film shows


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8th November 2016
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Who wouldn't want two extra days on the slopes? But that doesn't mean that the direct Eurostar Ski Train is the answer...


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3rd November 2016
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Tickets for travel from 3rd February - 5th March 2017 go on sale at 5am on Friday 4th November


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12th October 2016
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The Eurostar from London to Lyon is already on sale for Feb half term - and a relative bargain


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10th October 2016
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Winter trains go on sale this Thursday 13th October for travel up to 2nd February


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14th September 2016
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Eurostar has launched new ski trains at half term for Sunday - Sunday ski holidays


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26th July 2016
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It looks like the French Government has decided to axe most sleeper trains. On the face of it, bad news. However, in the long term this might lead to better, charter services.


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20th July 2016
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Just 43 seconds after the Eurostar Ski Train went on sale, I checked the prices for half term...


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13th July 2016
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The daytime and the overnight Eurostar Ski Train goes on on sale 9am Wed 20th July, for all dates of the winter season.


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9th July 2016
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The French Government (which owns SNCF) is planning to axe many of its sleeper trains. But we can help persuade them to think again...


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19th January 2016
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Stopping overnight in Paris on the way to the Alps gives many advantages - and a group of 26 of us have just done it - and loved it.


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17th December 2015
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Skiers traveling to on the daytime Eurostar Ski Train to Bourg St Maurice have on bus that connects them to resorts. It's bonkers. What are the options?


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15th November 2015
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The events in Paris are tragic and devastating. Can we start making travel and consumer decisions that make the world safer and happier?


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13th November 2015
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How does the overnight Eurostar Ski Train compare with travelling to the Alps via Paris, from where you can take sleeper trains?


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21st October 2015
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In a surprising move, Eurostar has pulled five London-Lyon dates - but we've discovered alternative routes back.


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15th October 2015
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Can you believe it? At less than 24 hours notice before the winter timetable went on sale, SNCF Lyria decided to cancel the Lille - Geneva service.


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15th October 2015
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Indirect winter journeys for the 2015-16 ski season are now on sale, for dates up until 4th Feb. If you are travelling via Lyon, you can book Feb half-term dates too.


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17th September 2015
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Many skiers assume that although more enjoyable, travelling by train independently is far more expensive than flying. Our research tells a rather different story...


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15th July 2015
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Eurostar has announced that its Ski Train to the French Alps will go on sale at 11am on Thursday 16th July.


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22nd June 2015
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You might love the idea of overnight by train to the Alps. And indeed it is great. But in many cases I'd recommend daytime train travel instead - here are five reasons.


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15th March 2015
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For the 2015-16 season, two important questions are: ‘How much will independent train travel cost, and when can you book it?' This blog will help answer those questions.


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3rd March 2015
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Many skiers don't realise how easy it is to change station in Paris by taxi - and that by changing station they get great train options to a far wider range of fabulous ski destinations. Here's how.


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24th December 2014
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Feeling confused when trying to book train travel to ski resorts? You are surely not alone. Here are five reasons to pick up the phone and talk to a rail company.


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26th October 2014
Booking independent rail travel for a large group might seem daunting. But my experience with Voyages SNCF actually proved surprisingly good.


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14th October 2014
The booking horizon for indirect train journeys to the Alps is now open, allowing you to book a wide range of journeys to the Alps.


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29th September 2014
How do child fares (age 4-11) compare to adult fares on the Eurostar Ski Train? We checked prices for every date of the ski season, to find out.


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23rd July 2014
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The Eurostar Ski Train to the French Alps will go on sale at 6:30am on Thursday 31st July 2014. But how much is it actually likely to cost you?


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13th March 2014
While interviewing random skiers and snowboarders in Tignes, to ask their views about the resort and about train travel, I was lucky enough to meet Ray, who spoke very frankly - and entertainingly!


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3rd January 2014

Two extra days on the slopes and a direct journey that delivers you minutes from the ski slopes...the overnight Eurostar Ski Train sounds ideal in principle.

However, there is one problem: unlike sleeper trains from Paris, the direct service doesn't have proper flat beds but merely seats that recline a little. This means you have to sit up all night, lean on a friend or partner's shoulder or try and curl across two seats - if there is space.



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8th October 2013
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Rail Europe has just announced that the winter 2013-14 booking horizons - which mean that you can book journeys that use a Eurostar + at TGV train or a Eurostar + a Corail Lunea sleeper train  (the Eurostar Ski Train is already on sale).

The booking window opens at 5am on the 17th October.

The booking windows are never as simple as it could or should be, but it works like this:



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10th September 2013
Know that you want to take the train, but haven't yet chosen your ski resort? In many cases that doesn't matter, as our investigation reveals..

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