All you need to know about ski holidays by train

Eurostar Ski Train (daytime)

Thu, 22/09/2011 - 09:05 -- admin

Introduction

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The Eurostar Ski Train to the Alps is the most direct way of getting from London to Moutiers, Aime and Bourg St Maurice stations, which service resorts in the Tarentaise region of the French Alps. It departs London every Saturday morning (and stops at Ashford International too) and  returns the following Saturday morning from the Alps.

Travelling this way is a lot of fun.  The train could probably do with a few more table seats in Standard Class, while in Standard Premier every seat has a table seat.  There is a cafe bar , a happy atmosphere and compared to flying or driving it is easier, more enjoyable and frequently quicker too - door to door.

This is a new film that Snowcarbon founder Daniel Elkan made about it, commissioned by Eurostar. 


Step 1: Take the Ski Train to the Alps

>Eurostar Ski Train The Ski Train en route

Being direct, this is the simplest of journeys.

You get on, and 7-8 hours later you get off. In the Alps. Where all the snow is. Yay.

It's a fair bit of time to kill, but there are lots of fun or useful ways to spend it, as you'll already know if you travel on this train.  It's a smooth, comfortable journey, the cafe bar is always lively and hhas a nice ambience, and however you spend the time you are guaranteed to be having a better experience than sitting around at airports or on long transfers.

You can find out more about what it's like on board, and also read what other skiers say.


Step 2: Transfer to your resort

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Once you arrive, all you have to do is make the relatively short transfer the train station to the ski resort.  These transfers are typically between 25 minutes and 45 minutes,  and are far shorter than airport transfers - which can take 1.5 - three hours - or even longer.

It's a good idea pre-book a taxi transfer (although at popular stations like Bourg St Maurice and Moutiers you can find a taxi driver on the spot too).

There are also buses from train stations to ski resorts, usually timed to coincide with the arrival of the TGV.

For every ski resort on the Snowcarbon website, we have a transfer guide page to show you taxi and bus options and how to book them.


What children think of this journey

Daniel (Snowcarbon Founder) says:

"Travelling to the Alps, it never fails to impress on me how much children love the journeys.  Walk up and down any train and you'll see very happy families  - train journey really suit children - as well as adults.

I thought it would be interesting to make a film about what children themselves think of the journey. So at Easter I took my camera to St Pancras and got on board the daytime Eurostar Ski Train. 

The children interviewed in this film were all found on location in St Pancras and on the train. They had a lot to say about the journey - and skiing! Indeed, they can teach us a thing or two about how to have fun when travelling by train to the Alps.


Daytime Eurostar Ski Train timetable 2017-18

Outbound journey

  • The first daytime outbound departure from London to the Alps is on Saturday 16th December 2017
  • The last daytime outbound departure from London to the Alps is on Saturday 31st March 2018
Depart Arrive
London St Pancras Ashford Moutiers Aime Bourg St Maurice
09:45 10:28 18:15 18:34 18:58

Return journey

  • The first daytime return departure from the Alps to London is on Saturday 23rd December 2017
  • The last daytime return departure from the Alps to London is on Saturday 7th April 2018
Depart Arrive
Bourg St Maurice Moutiers Ashford London St Pancras
09:34 10:14 15:37 16:13

New Sunday - Sunday holiday option for 2018?

Normally, the direct Eurostar Ski Train services are suitable only for skiers whose holiday dates are Saturday – Saturday.  However, last season Eurostar added four direct trains for February Sunday – Sunday holiday dates too.

The outbound trains go overnight, departing St Pancras on the evenings of Saturday 11th and Saturday 18th February, arriving in the Alps early on the Sunday morning.  

The return journey is daytime, departing Alps on the mornings of Sunday 18th and Sunday 25th February and arriving back at St Pancras in the afternoon.

Outbound schedule (last season):

Saturday Feb 11th and 18th - overnight travel
London St Pancras dep 19:42
Ashford  dep 20:28
Moutiers arr 05:34
Aime la Plagne arr 05:58
Bourg St Maurice arr 06:17

Inbound schedule:

Sunday Feb 18th and 25th - daytime travel
Bourg St Maurice dep 09:34
Moutiers dep 10:14
Ashford  arr 15:37
London St Pancras arr 16:13

It's not yet clear whether Eurostar will do this for the 2017-18 season.  To help encourage Eurostar to build on this, please sign and share our petition for a Sunday - Sunday Ski Train


How much does the daytime Eurostar Ski Train cost?

The 'lead in' fare for the Eurostar Ski Train is £149 return per adult - i.e. that's the cheapest it can be. However the reality is that on peak dates, even if you book as soon as the train goes on sale, you won't get that price. Here's a table showing what we estimate the price will be, assuming that you book soonish after the train goes on sale and don't leave it to the last minute:

Date Adult return price
Non-peak £150 - £230
Christmas £270 - £320
New Year £280 - £350
Feb half-term £320 - £400 (already sold out)
Easter £250 - £320

When can you book the Eurostar Ski Train 2017-18?

Tickets for independent travel on the daytime and the overnight Eurostar Ski Trains will  go on sale at on Wednesday 19th July at 8am for all dates of the 2017-18 winter season.

On our unique Live Ski and Snow Trains Price Check page you can view prices (updated everyday) for the Eurostar Ski Trains (and other journeys too).

However, although independent ski-train fares are not on sale yet,  ski holidays with rail travel included, from ski tour operators, are already available to book. Click here to view them, or if you would like some advice on destinations and tour operators, ask Snowcarbon founder Daniel.


How to transfer from the daytime Eurostar Ski Train to your resort

To transfer from the Eurostar Ski Train to your hotel, chalet or apartment in resort, you have four options:

1. If you've booked a rail-inclusive ski package from a ski tour operator, your transfer will normally be included in the package.
2. If you've booked an independent chalet, the chalet company may be able to offer to pick you up from the train - check what they charge for this service.
3. You could book a local taxi (see table below)
4. You could book a bus transfer (see table below) if the bus times connect conveniently with the Ski Train (they don't always - but we at Snowcarbon are campaining to change that).


Local taxi transfers from the Eurostar Ski Train to resorts

The prices below are averages, sourced from a variety of local taxi-transfer companies.

From Bourg St Maurice: local taxi prices to nearby ski resorts
Ski resort 1 pax 2 to 4 pax 5 pax 6 pax 7 pax 8 pax
La Rosière 60 € 65 € 70 € 80 € 90 € 100 €
La Plagne 70 € 75 € 80 € 85 € 90 € 100 €
Les Arcs 1600 50 € 55 € 60 € 65 € 70 € 80 €
Les Arcs 1800 55 € 60 € 65 € 70 € 75 € 85 €
Les Arcs 1950 65 € 75 € 80 € 90 € 100 € 110 €
Les Arcs 2000 70 € 80 € 85 € 95 € 105 € 115 €
Peisey – Vallandry 50 € 55 € 60 € 65 € 70 € 80 €
Sainte Foy  45 € 50 € 55 € 60 € 65 € 75 €
Tignes 80 € 85 € 90 € 100 € 110 € 120 €
Val d’Isère 80 € 85 € 90 € 100 € 110 € 120 €

 

From Moutiers: local taxi prices to nearby ski resorts
Ski resort 1 to 3 pax 4 pax 5 pax 6 pax 7 pax 8 pax
Couchevel le Praz 1300 63 € 68 € 73 € 83 € 93 € 105 €
Courchevel Village 1550 68 € 73 € 78 € 88 € 98 € 110 €
Couchevel Moriond 1650 70 € 75 € 80 € 90 € 100 € 115 €
Courchevel 1850 75 € 80 € 85 € 95 € 105 € 120 €
Doucy 55 € 58 € 60 € 70 € 80 € 90 €
La Tania 63 € 68 € 73 € 83 € 93 € 105 €
Les Menuires 75 € 80 € 85 € 95 € 105 € 120 €
Meribel Les Allues 48 € 53 € 58 € 68 € 78 € 88 €
Meribel Village 55 € 58 € 60 € 70 € 80 € 90 €
Meribel Centre 58 € 63 € 68 € 78 € 88 € 98 €
Meribel Morel 58 € 63 € 68 € 78 € 88 € 98 €
Meribel Mottaret  65 € 70 € 75 € 85 € 95 € 110 €
St Martin de Belleville 63 € 68 € 73 € 83 € 93 € 105 €
Val Thorens 90 € 95 € 100 € 110 € 120 € 140 €
Valmorel 55 € 60 € 65 € 75 € 85 € 100 €

 


How to book the Eurostar Ski Train

Tickets for independent travel on the daytime and the overnight Eurostar Ski Trains will  go on sale at on Wednesday 19th July at 8am for all dates of the 2017-18 winter season.

The Eurostar Direct Ski Train is simple to book online.  If you already know where you want to go and are travelling independently, you can book the Eurostar Ski Train on Eurostar's website

Or, if you would like to view possible resorts and see exact journey times and transfer information, visit the Resorts and Journey Planner page

One of the best ways to book the Eurostar Ski Train is with a rail-inclusive package from ski tour operators. The train travel costs about the same price as flights  - and has transfers from station to resort included.You can visit the ski train holidays page to view ski holidays by train from a number of tour operators.

You can find out more about how to book the Eurostar Ski Train in our guide to booking ski holidays by train.