Very disappointed by reservation topic in Paris

  • 8 March 2022
  • 3 replies


i am very disappointed by the seat reservation system, especially in Paris. Why did i buy an Interrail Pass for 251€, only to pay for all trains again?
From Paris for almost all Trains you have to book a seat reservation before boarding. Problem is: The booking website does not work. So we had to go to the ticket office at Paris Est, stand there in a line for 45 minutes only to be told that our train is already full and all other trains this day are booked out as well. Our only option was to board the train anyway and buy the reservation in the train, where it costs twice as much - while we had to sit on the floor anyway.

For our trip to Paris we paid 20€ per Person and for the journey back it was 35€ per Person - while we also paid 251€ for the Interrail Pass. We thought with Interrail we could travel spontaniously and we would not have to pay for every train once again!
Please fix your reservation website as soon as possible!

For anyone planning a trip right now: If your trains need seat reservations, i would not recommend using Interrail as long as the reservation website does not work.


3 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

Yes, Interrail is meant to be spontaneous but some of the railways, most notably Spanish, French and Italian railways, don't like that. Interrail warns for that.

As to French reservations: you can also do them on SNCF ticket machines. And it's best to book a bit in advance. There may also be reservation-free alternatives but for any advice, we'd need to know your travel plan. interrail also propose some alternatives themselves here.

If the reservation system would have worked, it would not have been such a big problem.

We planned to travel from Germany to Paris, then Port Bou in Spain and then Granada.

We are back in Germany now, because we thought we got infected by Covid. So no Inbound/Outbound journeys left...

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

You can still use later, but then have to pay for the trips to/fro border from home. Depending on where you live in DE, it may be just a few € or more. You can also cut the extra cost a lot by crossing border to/fro FR on Regional trains.

Also haste mal im Praxis erlebt das DB gar nicht so schlecht sei wie immer geflüstert wird……...