France Pass - regional train - seat reservation?

  • 29 May 2023
  • 1 reply

I’ve just bought a 3 day France only pass for myself and my son.


I’ve booked Paris > Arles on TGV for the 1st day of my pass with a seat reservation of 24 euros which I was expecting.


I’ve then gone to book a train Toulon > Marseilles (TER train - 1 hour) then Marseilles > Bordeaux (Intercité train - 6 hours) for the 2nd day of my pass.   And it’s now saying I need a seat reservation of 49 euros for the Marseilles > Bordeaux section?? I thought regional trains didn’t require seat reservations? And this seems very expensive compared to my TGV reservation.


Can anyone explain this? I feel a bit misled as all the information about the pass on the website says that you only need seat reservations for fast trains - TGV and sleepers..

Hoping it’s an error….


Best answer by Al_G 29 May 2023, 01:35

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TER trains cannot be booked (with the exception of a few routes to/from Paris to Normandy)

Intercitiés also require reservations as with TGV.

There are alternative sources that may cut down the cost a little.

SNCF ticket offices, ticket machines and phone reservation will issue them for €10 or €20. charges a €4 fee per booking on top of the €10/€20 reservation fees, cheaper for multiple person/trains than interrail.


It is possible to travel Marseille - Bordeaux only on TER trains without reservations and fees but it requires multiple changes and 10+ hour journey time.