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7 replies
Hamburg to Paris
cherylbham
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Okay, so the DH and BIL and I will be in Hamburg from April 14th.  What and how is the best way to get to Paris, should we go?  I’ve read through the Eurail site, but would like someone with experience to give me a little more info.

apyf
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The easiest and cheapest way is by night train from Hamburg HBF (it also stops at several of the Hamburg suburbs like Altona &  Harburg) to Paris Nord departs daily 22:47, arrives in Paris 09:14.  It’s NZ 236 departing from platform 14 a/b.

I highly recommend you make a reservation as early as possible.  The route books up fast, especially on weekends.

If you have a railpass that covers the journey, you only need to pay the supplement.  Else you need to book early to get the discounted price (39 euros for bunk in 6 couchette cabin, or 49 euros for bunk in 4 couchette cabin). 

You can get better information from http://www.bahn.de/p/view/international/englisch/trains/db_nachtzug.shtml.  And you can book it here:

http://www.nachtzugreise.de/site/nachtzugreise/en/start.html

I have research this route.. ALOT.  There isn’t a faster or cheaper alternatives.  Flying you can get a Air Berlin flight, but you have to connect in Nuremburg, unless you want to shell out alot of $ for a Lufthansa flight. 

I have taken the train before (and will take it again in about a month), it’s no worst then any other night train experience. 

Below is the info on the train from the db page


BordRestaurant (Dortmund Hbf —> Paris Nord)

Number of bicycles conveyed limited  

Bicycles conveyed – subject to reservation  

Global price  

Couchettes  

snacks and beverages available from sleeping-car/couchette-car attenda  

seated coach  

Subject to compulsory reservation  

Special offer Spar-Night  

Sleeping-car  

oldlady
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This link shows the prices for various sleeping accomodations when using a railpass.  It’s usually pretty accurate, but I’d assume that the fares apyf posted are more accurate…. http://ourworld.comp…

cherylbham
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We do have rail passes; how does one make the reservations for the Thalys?  Where would I do that online?

apyf
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The Thaly is a highspeed train that is NOT covered by the rail pass.  You have to buy a ticket and reservation, but you get a discount if you have a rail pass.

oldlady
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Quote:
The Thaly is a highspeed train that is NOT covered by the rail pass.  You have to buy a ticket and reservation, but you get a discount if you have a rail pass.
  This is not true.  The Thalys is covered by a eurailpass — as long as the railpass covers the entire route (France and Benelux and/or Germany if you go to Cologne), but you have to buy a reservation.  Thalys trains are not covered by single country passes or by Interrail.

This pasted from the info center at www.railpass.com
Quote:
[=“arial”][=“2”]Thalys trains are high speed trains that serve select international routes between France, Belgium, Netherlands, and Germany. Thalys trains appear with a “THA” in schedules.

Railpass holders may ride Thalys trains, provided that their railpass covers the entire ride. Eurail, Europass, and Eurail Select passes (covering the entire ride) are valid. Belgian, Holland, France, and Germany Single-Country Passes are not valid.

However, railpass holders must pay a 15 Euro railpass-holder reservation fee to ride Thalys trains. Several travelers have reported difficulty making this special type of reservation, as seats in this catagory often sell out. Make your Thalys reservations early in your trip to avoid this problem. You can specify that you accept “Standby Seating” – which gets you on train, but does not guarentee you a seat.
[/][/]

apyf
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Opps, my bad.  It’s been a while.  I am getting train trips mixed up.  I remember making the Thaly reservation in Paris at the train station.  Can Thaly’s be reserved at ANY train station in europe?  Or just stations that they go through… ah I don’t remember anymore.

oldlady
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Quote:
Can Thaly’s be reserved at ANY train station in europe?  Or just stations that they go through… ah I don’t remember anymore.
  I don’t know.  I think you can reserve at any major train station, but sometimes there are changes and glitches.  There was a short period of time a couple of years ago when you couldn’t reserve “foreign’ (didn’t either start or end in Germany) trains at German rail stations, but I don’t think that’s the case now.  If you can’t reserve at a regular window, there’s usually a travel agency inside the train station where you can reserve almost any train.  The travel agencies are usually open only regular business hours, not 24/7 like the ticket windows.