Five things to know about the new ‘direct train’ from London to French ski resorts

Five things to know about the new 'direct train' from London to French ski resorts
Illustration photo: Jeff Pachout/AFP
A new addition is now on offer for the ski season - a train link that runs directly from London to French ski resorts.

The French travel company Travelski announced the creation of a new service in early September, and booking is now open.

Here’s how the service works:

It’s on the Eurostar route, but not run by Eurostar

The new service will use the Eurostar route from London St Pancras, through the Channel Tunnel and to Paris, but will not be run by Eurostar. Instead Eurostar has reached an agreement with Travelski, a subsidiary of travel firm Compagnie des Alpes, to run it.

The train itself is a standard Eurostar train, with seats and and a café-bar but no sleeping compartments. The journey lasts around nine-and-a-half hours.

Bus connections

The train runs from London via Paris to two towns in the French Alps, Bourg Saint Maurice and Moûtiers.

From there, a bus service will connect passengers to six ski resorts; Les Arcs, La Plagne, Meribel, Tignes, Val d’Isere and Les Menuires.

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You can’t book it directly

Travelski says it offers the train ride as part of a ‘dynamic package’ of transport and accommodation – in other words a package holiday. There is no option to book the train service only.

The company says the service will be offered “in the context of packages intended for the British market” and booking is via the Travelski website.

Booking is now open here.

It’s a weekend service

For the 2021/22 season, the train will only be running on weekends during the ski season.

The service will depart London on Friday, while French departures will be on Saturdays from the towns of Bourg Saint Maurice and Moûtiers. 

It runs from December 26th 2021 to April 9th 2022.

The company hopes it will revitalise the ski season

Compagnie des Alpes Spokesman David Ponson said: “In the face of an unprecedented health crisis that led to a complete closure of its activities during the last winter season, Compagnie des Alpes is strongly involved with its partners to promote a rapid and vigorous recovery of the mountain economy.

“It is doing so now through concrete actions that involve the continuity of its investment commitments and innovative, low-carbon projects. Investing in the mountains, and beyond that, investing for the mountains, are the key words for a lasting relationship of trust with our delegating partners.”

French ski resorts suffered an early end to the 2019/20 season as the pandemic hit, and were effectively closed for the whole of the 2020/21 season by the ban on the operation of ski lifts.

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