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Planning a travel without Eurostar

  • 30 October 2023
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I am planning a travel from Denmark to the Pyrenees, where I will be hiking. That means I will bring some camping equipment with me. This includes items that are not allowed on Eurostar trains.

But since Eurostar is faster than most other trains it will often show up when I search for the part of the journey that goes between Germany and Paris.

Are there any train route planners where it is possible to exclude Eurostar trains? On Bahn.de I can exclude high speed train. But that will also exclude trains like ICE and TGV.

 

Palle Dam, Denmark

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Best answer by ralderton 30 October 2023, 18:26

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Are you sure that Eurostar Red (the former Thalys routes) ban your equipment? I can imagine that Eurostar Blue (to/ from UK) bans flammable/ dangerous items, but there are no baggage checks on your route so how would they know?

I don’t see any reason you’d have a problem bringing camping equipment. (You might want to avoid Eurostar because of the reservation fees though!)

Which route will you take?

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You can avoid the Eurostar between Belgium and NL by taking Intercity instead. It’ll take you an extra hour or so. But avoiding the Eurostar between Brussels and Paris means a much longer journey.

The easiest way on Bahn.de is probably to break the journey down into smaller chunks. Or to specify a stopover of 00:01 at a station you want to force a connection. There’s no one way.

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I always thought that this name change would bring confusion. I liked the name Thalys much more than Eurostar ;)

But there are 100% sure no luggage checks or limitations on the Red Eurostar (ex-Thalys) trains from/to Paris-Brussels-Amsterdam-Köln. Only on the trains to/from the UK, but you don’t need those to get to the Pyrenees.

Only a bit expensive and limited seat reservations, but if you come from Germany or the Netherlands and can be worth the money to get quickly in Paris.

Thank you.

It is good to know that there are no baggage checks at the “red” Eurostar stations. Is that also the case at Paris Gare du Nord? I might depart from here when on my way home.

Baggage check or not: Eurostar seat reservations are a bit expensive, so I am still considering my options for an alternative route. It seems like a stopover in Mannheim or Karlsruhe will make the bahn.de find a route without Eurostar. And it does not seem to take much longer.

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The only baggage security checks are for the services that use the Channel Tunnel. So at Paris Gare du Nord you’d be checked when departing to the UK, but not departing to Belgium/ Netherlands/ Germany.

(There are also security checks for Spanish high-speed rail, but I don;t think you would be planning on using that?)

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Baggage check or not: Eurostar seat reservations are a bit expensive, so I am still considering my options for an alternative route. It seems like a stopover in Mannheim or Karlsruhe will make the bahn.de find a route without Eurostar. And it does not seem to take much longer.

Yes, that’s one option. 

It sort of depends where you are going in the Pyrenees, and how you intend to get there. There are several sleepers which might be useful. I would suggest a look at the map here: https://nachtzugkarte.de/en/

This is a long journey with several connections - whichever way you go. Don’t expect any trip planner to find the optimum route automatically. You’d need to break it down into smaller chunks to help it along.

 

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Also, bear in mind that TGVs in France will need a reservation (€10 or €20), and TGV/ ICEs across the German/ French border cost €18.

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