Can anyone familiar with Paris and its environs advise Peter Goble on the best way to retrieve Mme Goble who is arriving at Gare Du Nord at 1350 by Eurostar on Thursday next 04/06/2020?
"I intend to drive from Sourdeval (50150) to the outskirts of Paris in the early hours of that Thursday, and pick up a local train somewhere outside the périphérique to get to GdN in one hop, and make the return trip in mid-afternoon with my wife, picking up the car where I left it, so as to get home relatively unfrazzled.
I can’t drive into Paris, as I have a 2009 diesel car and no Crit’Air vignette, plus I’m not really up to unfamiliar big city driving at age 82. I can manage Caen and Rennes but Paris is major league stuff.
Any suggestions for a relatively hassle-free itinerary will be very gratefully received "
The problem is most trains from that side of France go to St Lazare or Montparnasse which means changing for the Gare du Nord- I was thinking maybe drive to eg Evreux and take a train from there to St Laz.
If you can drive to Pontoise or Cergy on the outskirts of Paris, there is a train straight to the Gare du Nord.
The ideal thing would be drive on Wednesday, stay the night somewhere, take the train to GdN on Thursday, pick up Berlina, take the train and drive back dans la foulée getting home on Thursday night, but I don’t know where you might stay overnight on Wednesday.
Absolutely, RER is fairly fast and I believe is now back to a normal’ish timetable so pretty regular trains. Even when I came through Paris during confinement there was a train every 30 mins (normally every 5-7 minutes).
This should give you the timetable and will take about an hour direct to Gare du Nord. You pop our several floors below the Eurostar platform, but well signposted even if a longish walk. People wait for each other at the end of the Eurostar platform.
The RER can feel a little scummy, especially some of the subterranean stations in Paris but it is fine. I normally don’t take any luggage but a while back travelled back to UK with a wheely bag - which I managed to forget on the RER platform at Gare de Lyon. Realising this at Gare du Nord I rushed back not expecting to ever see it again, But there it was with a woman explaining to a security man that she had seen me leave it, so she was sure I would be back and no need to take it away and blow it up or whatever they do with suspicious parcels.
Or could go to St Quentin en Yvelines and take RER C but would mean changing at St Michel. Or St Remy le Chevreuse and take RER B direct to Gare du Nord. Wonderful thing about Paris is that travel options are numerous!
When you get to the GdN all the signs for International Trains/ Eurostar will be encouraging you to go up a final escalator to the +1 mezzanine level where the Eurostar check in is. You don’t want to go there, but stay on level 0, the main concourse level, and keep walking along the front of the platforms. The Eurostar trains arrive next to platform 2. The taxi rank is up that end to, so if you decide to take a taxi they should drop you right next to the Eurostar platform (I’ve never taken a taxi in Paris, but I’ve seen the rush to the queue off the Eurostar train. You would need to prebook for return journey if you don’t want to risk waiting.)
She’s a retired nurse, Graham, and very germ-aware. She doesn’t trust the taxi-driver to have properly disinfected his cab between fares, it could be a death trap, so unfortunately I’ve had to declare it off limits.
Also, it looks from my on - line ticket trawl that the are only two trains in each direction Creil-Paris on 04 juillet and even some doubt about whether they will terminate at GdN…