Ski resorts by train

Eurostar + TGV journeys - 10 things to know

Wed 19 August, 2020


Daniel Elkan

If we don’t get the Eurostar Ski Train back on track this season, there are still plenty of great ways to get to the Alps by train.  Snowcarbon was set up for that very reason – to help skiers and snowboarders find out all the various wonderful ways of getting to the Alps by train.

One of these ways is by Eurostar + TGV.  You travel out by Eurostar to Paris or Lille, combined with a TGV train to the Alps. Here are ten things worth knowing.

1.    The journeys are great. 
I’ve travelled with friends to the Alps this many times. The Paris stopover film (see below) was filmed on one such journey.

2.    Pretty fast!
Compared to the Eurostar Ski Train, the journey by Eurostar + TGV to the same destinations only takes about one hour longer. So it’s still pretty fast, as shown by our Train vs Plane race - Top Gear style!


3.    You can reach more ski resorts this way. 
TGVs access a far wider range of ski resorts than just those in the Tarentaise (where the Ski Train accesses).  So travelling by Eurostar + TGV is greater gives you a greater range of ski resorts to choose.

4.   Changing in Paris is no biggie
If travelling via Paris, you’ll need to change station from Gare du Nord to Gare de Lyon. This is pretty simple and comfortable using a pre-booked taxi that meets you at the platform, or using the taxi rank that is metres from the Eurostar platform.

5.    Booking online vs with a rail-booking expert
Some journeys are pretty easily booked online. Others with the help of some of the rail-booking agents that we would recommend.  The booking guides on Snowcarbon will help you with advice on how to book.

6.    Example journey schedules
You can see an example journey schedule here to the Tarentaise, for example:

London to Moutiers / Aime / Bourg St Maurice (example below is for a Saturday)
Depart      London St Pancras      07:52         Eurostar
Arrive       Paris-Nord                     11:17
Depart      Paris-Lyon                   12:47        TGV
Arrive     Moutiers /Aime /Bourg     17:05 / 17:26 / 17:48

Bourg St Maurice / Aime / Moutiers to London (Saturdays)
Depart     Bourg / Aime /Moutiers            09:16 / 09:36 / 09:54         TGV
Arrive      Paris-Lyon         14:08
Depart     Paris-Nord         16:13        Eurostar    
Arrive      London St Pancras     17:32

You can look up more journeys like this using the Snowcarbon Journey Planner for each resort or train station. The Journey Planner doesn't show every possible journey, but some of the best journeys that we would recommend.
7.    There’s flexibility. 
You can travel out earlier, do a stopover in Paris, or go Sunday – Sunday, or midweek, if that’s the changeover day of your preferred accommodation.

8.    When tickets go on sale
Tickets for the combined Eurostar + TGV journey go on sale in October.
Normally journeys can be booked about 90 – 120 days ahead of your date of travel.  On Snowcarbon’s newsletter we’ll keep you informed of the exact dates, once confirmed. If you aren't subscribed to the newsletter, theres a form at the bottom of every page of the Snowcarbon website.  Subscribing may possibly the best thing that you do in your life this week. Or ever. (But more likely, just this week).

9.    What it generally costs
Based on many years of checking and watching the prices of these journeys, I’d guestimate the prices as:
Off peak dates: £130 - £280 return
Peak dates:  £170 - £420 return
The earlier you book, the better the pricing.

10.    Eurostar + TGV rail-ski packages
We are working with ski tour operators to help them create rail-inclusive ski packages with Eurostar + TGV journeys. You can view these on the Snowcarbon packages section.  And we can help you tailor make trips yourself too. Just drop us a line with what you are ideally looking for, and we can help you find something fantastic.