Train and Coach
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Train Travel Winter 2024
New for Winter 2023/24 is the Eurostar Snow Train service via Lille from £99 one-way Standard Class or £149 Standard Premier Class (no Business Class option) and includes bags and skis and check-in and security and seat reservation and tax etc etc!
- Tickets are on sale from 31 August for travel between 16 December 2023 and 4 February 2024.
- The new service involves a Eurostar train between London and Lille; then a second, newly-branded, Eurostar Snow train run by Thalys between Lille and the ski resorts at Chambéry, Albertville, Moûtiers, Aime-La Plagne and Bourg-Saint-Maurice.
- Trains depart Saturday morning and return Sunday morning allowing 7 days on the slopes (so not really helpful for the traditional Sat to Sat or Sun to Sun holiday bookings – hotels in Moûtiers for the Saturday night will be popular!).
Some Tour Ops will also be running packages using these services but train only tickets are available from 10:00 on Thursday 31 August 2023.
Confirmed Eurostar Snow Train Timetable for Winter 2023/2024
OUT: (8hr 29min travel time)
- London St Pancras dep: Sat 09:01
- Lille arr: 11:27 (48min to change platform)
- Lille dep: 12:15
- Moûtiers arr: 17:30
RETURN: (8hr 5min travel time)
- Moûtiers dep: Sun 08:52
- Lille arr: 14:30 (1hr to change platform)
- Lille dep: 15:35
- London St Pancras arr: 15:57
The Eurostar website currently has a few errors (it says to get a coach from Bourg St Maurice for La Tania instead of Moûtiers!). Also note the limited dates with the service running only until 4 February 2023 and then the options are via Paris using the SNCF service to Moûtiers.
Examples of the alternative Eurostar / SNCF service:
SATURDAY OUT: (8hr 18min travel time)
- London St Pancras dep: Sat 06:31
- Paris Gare du Nord arr: 09:48 (1hr 44min to change station)
- Paris Gare de Lyon dep: 11:32
- Moûtiers arr: 15:49
SATURDAY RETURN: (9hr 1min travel time)
- Moûtiers dep: Sat 10:31
- Paris Gare de Lyon arr: 14:54 (2hr 18min to change station)
- Paris Gare du Nord dep: 17:12
- London St Pancras arr: 18:32
SUNDAY RETURN: (8hr 40min travel time)
- Moûtiers dep: Sun 09:50
- Paris Gare de Lyon arr: 14:11 (2hr 1min to change station)
- Paris Gare du Nord dep: 16:12
- London St Pancras arr: 17:30
The original Snow Train has not run since 2010 and now the options are the Eurostar direct service to Paris (if only they used the same station) for an SNCF service to Moûtiers. But see above for new 2024 service via Lille.
The original Snow Train was the infamous overnight party train with an all night bar and disco carriage arriving in to Moûtiers early on Saturday morning with very tired & hungover passengers...
There have been various news articles about other operators running high speed trains across Europe with a London - Geneva direct service as one of the proposals and services direct to Lyon were started in 2017 however this was dropped after a couple of seasons and a change in Paris is now required (including a change of station from Gare du Nord to Gare De Lyon).
Eurostar original Ski Train No Longer Running - See above for service via Lille
Eurostar had a direct service from London to Moûtiers with overnight or daytime travel options. Advantages include 8 days skiing on a weeks holiday, no airport hassles, you can bring plenty of ski gear (at no charge), Moûtiers is only 16km / 20 minutes drive from La Tania and you can feel good about your Carbon Footprint.... No full sleeping facilities though and still took between 7 and 9 hours.
Train v Plane
They both have their (often very opinionated) fans and the benefits of the train are above. However, it is only a 75 minute flight time from London to Geneva (as opposed to between 7 and 9 hours on the train) and airports are situated near Motorways with plenty of parking...
Use meet and greet parking, priority bag drop, on-line check-in, express security, speedy boarding, VIP lounge access, private transfers or hire car and it's not really much hassle flying! Minimum check-in times are actually less on easyJet (30-40 mins) than for the Eurostar Ski Trains (45-60 mins). There are a lot more options too, for example easyJet have up to 60 flights per day to Geneva from the UK (as well as to Lyon & Grenoble).
FROM 2016 ALL EUROSTAR NIGHT SKI TRAINS BECAME ALCOHOL FREE. NOTHING FOR SALE ON BOARD (& NO FREE BOOZE IN STANDARD PREMIER CLASS EITHER). YOU WERE BANNED FROM BRINGING ANY ALCOHOL ON TO THE TRAIN EVEN IF YOU WERE NOT GOING TO DRINK IT. #gamechanger
Original Eurostar Direct London to Moûtiers - OLD Timetable from Winter 2020
Friday EVENING departure from London:
Departs London St. Pancras 19:45 (Ashford 20:28) - Arrives Moûtiers 05:32 Saturday
Duration 8 hours 47 minutes
Saturday EVENING departure from Moûtiers:
Departs Moûtiers 22:54 - Arrives London St. Pancras 07:16 Sunday (Ashford 06:33)
Duration 9 hours 22 minutes
Saturday DAY trains:
Departs London St. Pancras 09:45 (Ashford 10:28) - Arrives Moûtiers 18:27
Duration 7 hours 42 minutes
Departs Moûtiers 10:14 - Arrives London St. Pancras 16:13 (Ashford 15:37)
Duration 6 hours 59 minutes
Adults from £57 each-way but half term etc starts at £180 each-way. Free carriage of skis, boots and boards plus generous luggage allowances.
Other Rail Options
Further options with Eurostar and the French rail network via Paris can be sorted out with
Paris to Moûtiers from around £100 return but some further discounts are available. Book on-line for an additional saving and free first class delivery of tickets.
NOTE: There is another Moûtiers in the West of France - the one you want is Moûtiers les Salins. Also, beware of trains stopping at a station en route and de-coupling half the carriages, leaving them behind! (to be fair this happens in the UK too - we remember being left in Northampton once!)
Comfortable sleeper coaches offering up to 8 days skiing with free ski carriage, no transfers and a direct service to La Tania with or without accommodation included used to be available pre-pandemic - not so many options now but some prices can be very competitive when factoring in there may be no transfers, airport parking, baggage charges etc.
Snow Express run coaches to the Alps from London (and Folkestone). They operate to many different resorts and will switch coaches at Moûtiers for La Tania. Prices generally start at £193 return (bags, skis, booking fees and resort drop off all included).
Snow Express Winter 2024 Timetable:
Departs Friday London Victoria at 18:00 (Folkestone 20:20)
Arrives Saturday in to La Tania at 14:10 (arrives Moûtiers 12:45)
Departs Saturday from La Tania 16:55 (departs Moûtiers 19:10)
Arrives Sunday London Victoria 12:30 (Folkestone 10:30)
Ski Méribel who operated for over 20 years offering scheduled return sleeper coach services from London Victoria to Méribel and La Tania are no longer operating.
Ski Weekends no longer have coach options available. They did have a loyal following for their regular Thursday night departures from London Victoria returning on Monday morning but costs have seen the cheap flight operators win out for now.
Eurolines were bought by Flixbux in May 2029 and now form Europe's largest coach network.
Flixbus run services from all over the UK via London to Paris and then onwards to Annecy or Geneva
Example: Dep London 11:00, Dep Paris 23:15, Arr Annecy 06:35+1 day for around £200 return