Trains and Boats and Planes

July 16, 2008 at 11:31 am 10 comments


by Loraine Ritchey thatwb@yahoo.com

TRAINS AND BOATS AND PLANES

I have fingers crossed and holding my breath that “my birthday, anniversary,retirement” trip will come off and that all will be well when it comes to “Plan-it Ritchey” and they will be taking ME away.

Trying to get the “dates right with the tickets and rooms available” has been a bit of a job. I know I am probably responsible for at least one travel agent looking for another career choice.

I finally managed to get the “Rhine” cruise done and dusted, now the tricky bit getting from London to Cochem, Germany. I didn’t want to take the time driving or the amount of money it was going to cost for extra car rentals ( the add ons for an automatic- VAT) and OH! those petrol ( gas) prices. The cost, after allowing for the imperial gallon , is hovering around 10 dollars a gallon and my dollar isn’t going very far at all this trip. It will cost 2 dollars approximately for every pound sterling I spend. Then there is the extra insurance and the rules and regulations of different EU countries.

France fines motorists without yellow vests

“Allo, Allo: Drivers greeted by the French police and not carrying a yellow vest will be fined £100″

How about a “plane”

I can fly from the heart of London ( London City Aiport) direct to Strasbourg, France, where we can pick up the shuttle to Cochem for around $400 per person return ( pond life class) Time 1. hour and 40 minutes coupled with the 1:30 pre check in time and the wait at baggage claim . But then you have to get to the airport by either taxi or train and then from the airport to the city , arriving early enough to go through all the rigmarole of flying today and fingers crossed that the planes are on time and haven’t been cancelled…… did I want to take the chance of missing the boat?

So after much deliberation I decided let us go by train, in fact let us go under the channel instead of on it or over it-

London to Paris on the Euro Star

and then from Paris to Strasbourg on the worlds fastest train
Train à Grande Vitesse
image source
for around $300 per person ( with incentives) ( 1st class) -OOOOOO I like the sound of that, I can pack a suitcase that will actually contain more than the bare necessities, get up and walk around and sit in comfortable seats( that recline – yes really recline) for a change be wined and dined

In 1st class (both Business Premier & Leisure Select) the fare includes an excellent hot 3-course meal and complimentary alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, all served at your seat. All passengers have access to two bar cars, located in cars 6 & 13, serving tea, coffee, hot chocolate, beer, wine, spirits, sandwiches, crisps and a few hot snacks

Eurostar
The times aren’t bad either from London to Paris –
http://www.seat61.com/London-Paris-train.htm

London to Paris takes as little as 2 hours 15 minutes

Paris to Strasbourg 30 minute pre check in time
http://travel.latimes.com/articles/la-trw-francetrain8jun08

The new TGV service will cut the train journey between Paris and this Alsatian city in eastern France by nearly half — to two hours and 20 minutes.

Trains on the new 252-mile line reaching Strasbourg via Reims, Metz and Nancy are expected to travel at speeds of up to 199 mph, compared with a maximum of 186 mph for current TGV trains.

It might take a little longer but I am hoping the journey will be less stressful – “Gullible’s Travels”

and it seems the EU plans for more trains- Can the USA be so far behind?????

The EU has earmarked $27.5 billion to finance trans-European rail networks, much of it to five priority transcontinental links that are due to be completed by 2015.

and Eurostar is also carbon neutral

We will see and since I don’t want to be rushed we will stay overnight in Strasbourg- Hotels in Europe can be a bit confusing as well
more on that in another post!

Entry filed under: Brit take, travel.

Basics on TIF an overview Eagles and Trains- Link- ups please

10 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Trains and Boats and Planes  |  July 16, 2008 at 11:38 am

    […] unknown wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerpthttp://travel.latimes.com/articles/la-trw-francetrain8jun08. The new TGV service will cut the train journey between Paris and this Alsatian city in eastern France by nearly half — to two hours and 20 minutes. … […]

  • 2. Henery  |  July 16, 2008 at 12:34 pm

    Sounds like a lot of fun, Loraine! Hope you have fun while you’re gone, and take lots of pics for us!!

  • 3. dennis lamont  |  July 16, 2008 at 1:20 pm

    Ah Yes, when the point is relaxation, sit back and be pampered, enjoy the trip. I love your schedule and can’t wait to hear and see how it turns out … have to include the wine list and tell us about “train food”. Thank you for taking the plunge (oops, two thirds of a pun)

    If we ever get to the point where we finally decide that there are other thing besides automobiles then maybe we will have rail travel …until the demand is there, nothing will happen. Old limp-along AMTRAK is keeping the spirit alive but a true 200+mph real passenger train is beyond us. $10/gal maybe ???

  • 4. Loraine Ritchey  |  July 16, 2008 at 1:28 pm

    Henery .YOU of all people know I can’t take pictureslike Elizabeth the 1st it is all “off with their heads” 😦

  • 5. Loraine Ritchey  |  July 16, 2008 at 1:32 pm

    Amazing to me Dennis that this country -from what I have read – was the leader in long distance rail travel for decades .this town suffered greatly when “rail passed her by in the 1830’s .. I wonder if America is in store for the same …will Canada jjump on board????????
    I will certainly give an unbiased opinion of my journey by “super rail”

  • 6. dennis lamont  |  July 16, 2008 at 8:35 pm

    My long distance train travels all took place way before AMTRAK and consisted of trips to NYC, Philly & Boston. Two in Pullman and one by coach. The trip to NYC was the classic and we literally flew there much faster than they run today because we were on the express track. I boarded my Pullman at Cleveland Union Terminal at 10 pm, my roomette was made up and I got to sleep before we were picked up at midnight. By 8am the next morning we were in Albany changing over to electric for the trip down the Hudson along the water level route. Breakfast in the diner with the Hudson Valley for scenery and into Grand Central Station. Five Hundred & 50 miles refreshed and relaxed and leave the worries elsewhere. For the trip back I took the day train to enjoy the scenery zipping past somewhere between 80 & 90 mph. Between the diner and the club car the trip was very relaxing.

  • 7. renee dore  |  July 16, 2008 at 9:54 pm

    I have had the opportunity to use the Eurostar Train line 3 times in Italy and each time was great. Very smooth, quiet, scenic but you have to look quick as you fly by rather quicky. Make sure you give yourself enough time at the train station-the stations are huge places and the trains are long and you have to walk the train platform to get to your train car. Maybe they have have golf cart shuttles on the platforms- not certain- we always seemed to have to hussle to get to the correct train car. Hopefully your traincar will be right up close. It would be great if we had these trains here in the US. Fifteen years agowhen my Aunt and her translator came here from Italy they thought they could just hop on a train to visit a few cities in a reasonable amount of time. They were disappointed when they learned there was no such service as the Eurostar here between the cities they wanted to see. Renee

  • 8. Bea Scott  |  July 17, 2008 at 1:14 am

    “dates right with the tickets and rooms available” — exactly! It’s too hard! Though I’m quite curious about the EuroStar, since I haven’t been able to ride that yet. Interesting post!

  • 9. JUST SAY ‘NON’- TO FRANCE « That Woman’s Weblog  |  April 15, 2009 at 2:41 pm

    […] had such high hopes of High Speed Rail – 1st class – thinking back I was a little naïve- (well a lot naïve ) as I had visions of “The Orient […]

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