Solved

Rail strikes and connections

  • 4 March 2023
  • 6 replies
  • 373 views

Hello everyone,

I'm a first time interrailer and had my first trip (from germany to the uk and back) all planned out when I ran into problems for my trip back due to the announced strikes in great britain.

My intended itinerary had me taking a train from Leeds to London on the morning of the 30.3. and then the Eurostar to Paris at 17:31. Since this late train would make getting all the way home quite tight and depending on a lot of connections, so I opted for staying the night in Paris and taking the TGV to Freiburg at 17:25 on the 31.3.

I'm travelling with a global pass and have already reserved the Eurostar as well as the TGV.

With the now announced strikes I'm unsure how to proceed, as at the moment it looks like there will be a high possibility of no train running on the 30st from Leeds to London (there is no strike timetable yet) so I have no possibility of getting to London in time to get the Eurostar.

What possibilities do I have here?

I'd rebook to an Eurostar on the 31st, but there are absolutely no passholder seats left, so I'd also have to reschedule the TGV because I won't be able to reach it.

I had considered extending my stay in Leeds, but from what I gathered reading through this forum, changing bookings in advance it rather unadvisable? 

If you need any additional information, I'd be happy to provide them.

Thanks in advance *leaves cookies*

icon

Best answer by rvdborgt 4 March 2023, 23:10

View original

6 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +7

Strike timetables are often available only a few days in advance. Further complicating it. 

I should go down to London a day earlier, and find some accommodation there before taking the Eurostar you planned. 

Extending your stay might be difficult. Easter will probably lead to very busy Eurostars! 

Should Eurostar get disrupted too, then options depend on your preferences. You could take a Ferry from Newcastle to IJmuiden (Nl) or from Harwich to Hoek van Holland (Nl) and work your way down to France (or Germany) from there.

The Calais to Dover ferry is very foot passenger unfriendly.

Or buses, from London to Paris. Sometimes these take the Chunnel, sometimes the Ferry :)

Thanks for answering :)

Going to London a day earlier would lead to me having to pay the train ticket myself because I only have a 4-day pass and would use it fully with my current itinerary (day 1: Freiburg - Penrith / day 2: Penrith Leeds / day 3: Leeds - Paris / day 4: Paris - Freiburg ) and also paying additional accomodation in London.

Would there be any way to get compensated for those?

I had also considered seeing if there IS a train on the 30th and if not, getting proof of that, taking the first available train to London on the 31st and showing that proof to the Eurostar staff, explaining the situation and hoping to be put on the next train with free space. From what I've read that how it works if you miss the Eurostars *to* London due to delay/cancellation/strike. I just couldn't find the term for the UK-side of it, but may have overlooked them.

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

As you said, Leeds to London might be the biggest problem.

For that journey there are Megabuses between Leeds and London Victoria Coach Station. The tickets are quite low, around 8£. You could leave at 7:50 or 9:30.

This seems to me the best solution as it doesn't involve an extra night somewhere.

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

Going to London a day earlier would lead to me having to pay the train ticket myself because I only have a 4-day pass

With the previous UK strikes it was always possible to travel on the day before or after the strike with a ticket for the strike day. In that case, you could travel a day early, with your Interrail activated for the following day.

I had also considered seeing if there IS a train on the 30th and if not, getting proof of that, taking the first available train to London on the 31st and showing that proof to the Eurostar staff, explaining the situation and hoping to be put on the next train with free space. From what I've read that how it works if you miss the Eurostars *to* London due to delay/cancellation/strike. I just couldn't find the term for the UK-side of it, but may have overlooked them.

You could do that indeed (if there's really no train on the 30th) and it would be within your rights. But it will depend on there being any free seats at all (in any class and pass holder availability is then irrelevant) on the Eurostar.

Userlevel 7
Badge +4

As you said, Leeds to London might be the biggest problem.

For that journey there are Megabuses between Leeds and London Victoria Coach Station. The tickets are quite low, around 8£. You could leave at 7:50 or 9:30.

This seems to me the best solution as it doesn't involve an extra night somewhere.

This seems like the best idea. For £8, you have ‘insurance’ that will get you to London in time for your Eurostar if there are no trains. Even if you don’t end up using it, it’s money well-spent.

Thank you all, that makes it a lot clearer to me. At the moment it looks like there will be at least a skeleton train service, so I´m hoping for that and will be getting a coach ticket just to be sure if everything else fails.

I have also contacted Eurostar on the policies of missing the train due to strike and will update this topic accordingly once I get an answer.

Reply