As a consequence of the Covid-19 crisis Eurostar is operating a particularly limited timetable for the time being - further information is available on Eurostar.com
Final Destination: London St. Pancras International
Some of the departures between Lille and London will be by the e300 trains, but the newer e320 trains are now also being used on this route.
Until January 7th:
Mon-Fri = 6 x trains per day
Saturday = 5 x trains
Sunday = 6 x trains
January 8th - February 4th:
Mon-Thurs = 5 x trains per day
Friday = 6 x trains
Saturday = 4 x trains
Sunday = 6 x trains
Book early and save: Yes
Online bookings open: up to 330 days ahead of the travel date.
The price shown above is the standard, most heavily discounted, one way Standard Class price.
Eurostar frequently offers special fare/deals promotions, so the price you see on the home page of the Eurostar website may be cheaper.
But check the terms and conditions of these deals before making a booking. The special price may depend on additional factors, such as the need to book a return trip and/or may not be available when making day trips.
The booking path on the Eurostar website is comparatively straightforward and an advantage of booking direct with Eurostar, is that it offers its ticket purchasers the ability to choose specific seats from a seating plan (after the booking has been made).
The different types of ticket summarised
Also worth knowing is that when travelling by Eurostar you can choose between three classes of service, and this also impacts on the exchanges and refunds of what Eurostar refers to as 'Flexible tickets'
If you book Standard or Standard Premier tickets, you can exchange them if need be, to an alternative departure on your booked route; but if you want to transfer your ticket to a new departure less than 7 days before your travel date, you will need to pay an admin fee of £30 for Standard Class tickets, £40 for Standard Premier tickets PLUS the price difference with the new ticket you will be booking.
What's new, in response to the pandemic, is that these £30/40 charges aren't applied if you want to transfer to an alternative departure more than seven days before your travel date.
Business Premier tickets are less restrictive, in response to the pandemic they can now be refunded and they can be exchanged to alternative departures without paying the admin fee, or the price difference.
Eurostar's full ticket terms and conditions are here
Using Rail Passes on Eurostar:
Rail pass users can now pay reservation fees to travel on Eurostar trains, in a similar manner to other international European high speed trains.
The new rail pass reservation fees are similar to the cheapest single journey ticket prices, but as those cheapest tickets can sell out quickly, it's likely that the rail pass reservation fees will save money.
You can purchase these online with no booking fees via B-Europe - or they ARE now available on the Eurostar website.
Booking in advance is recommended as it's not unknown for rail pass reservations on Eurostar services to sell out days or weeks in advance, there is evidently limited availability per departure.
You can obtain a rail pass reservations without paying a booking fee at Eurostar stations.
However, if you want to do this on the day of travel be prepared to be flexible re: the train you will take.
If you are a UK resident, your rail pass + reservation is only valid if you take a train from the UK on the first day that your pass is valid for and return to the UK on the final day that you will be using a pass.
|Ticket Provider||Approximate Cost|
|B-Europe||from €50 (approx)|
|SNCF Connect||from €50 (approx)|
|Omio||from €50 (approx)|
|Omio||from €50 (approx)|
Note that London is in a different time zone to mainland Europe, it is one hour behind - so when looking at a timetable the journey will look as though it's an hour shorter.
Boarding a Eurostar at Lille-Europe:
These four things are good to know:
(1) Eurostar check-in is located in Hall 4 on the concourse.
(2) Eurostar is currently recommending that that Standard Class And Standard Premier ticket holders should be at the Eurostar departure area 90 mins before departure; and that Business Premier ticket holders should be there 30 mins prior to departure.
The departure gates will close 30 mins prior to departure for Standard Class And Standard Premier ticket holders; and 20 mins prior to departure for Business Premier ticket holders.
(3) Announcements will be made in English and French as to when the check-in has opened, if you are at the station more than 90 mins before departure, there is little point in joining the queue for the check-in desk prior to this announcement.
(4) Around 5 -10 mins prior to departure another announcement will be made that travellers can now descend to the voie (platform/track) which the Eurostar will be departing from.
The departure screens shown above will show you in which zone/répére you can wait for easy boarding into the specific coach in which your reserved seat will be located.
ShowMeTheJourney has produced a detailed guide to connecting into a Eurostar from a TGV train.
It's not a scenic journey, but it is a journey with five distinct phases and highlights:
1: There is little to see from the high speed lines in France.
2: The train will slow down as it approaches The Channel Tunnel.
Announcements are no longer made that the train is about to enter the tunnel.
The journey through the tunnel will take around 22 mins.
3: As the train nears Ebbsfleet International station, comes the scenic highlight of the journey - the crossing of the River Medway on a high bridge.
4: After Ebbsfleet International (which can only be seen from the right) the train will enter a tunnel under the River Thames.
As the train exits this tunnel, from the left, the Queen Elizabeth II road bridge can be seen.
5: For most of the final 8 -10 mins of the journey the trains use tunnels to enter London (Stratford International station is located between the tunnels).
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