Quandaries

Here’s the quandary I’ve been tossing about in my head. We are planning to go to Paris from Manchester next spring. There are two ways of getting there and each has advantages and disadvantages. Cost wise and time wise, I don’t think they will be all that far part and both have some messing around and schlepping a big suitcase. We’re planning to do this on the second of the two weeks that I will be overseas and I will be leaving from London to come home at the end, that’s why I’ll have my full size suitcase. I am not capable of living for two weeks out of a rolling carry on size bag. It just won’t happen.

Method 1: Fly from Manchester to Paris, (early arrival at the airport). Go through customs and wait for baggage. Get to the RER train and into Paris, Gare du Nord (there should be elevators from the train to the concourse, right? Or escalators at least?) Taxi to the hotel because lugging a heavy case up stairs from the underground/Metro isn’t going to happen either.

Method 2: Take the train from Manchester to London Euston. Taxi to St. Pancras (I know it’s not too far but we’ll have that luggage to contend with which also leaves out trying to get underground tickets, dragging around on that and up into the train station. Taxi it is.) Get the Eurostart to Paris Gare du Nord and a taxi to the hotel.

Getting to London to Paris  will definitely be on the Eurostar.

The second way sounds like less messing but with both ways, there’s two legs of the journey, either plane to train or train to train, both ending in the same place. Time wise, probably the train to train will take longer, with each train journey a bit over 2 hours plus the time in between that you need to check in to the Eurostar terminal. Cost wise, hard to say. You can get fairly cheap advance tickets for the Manchester to London journey if you’re on top of things and the Eurostar can be fairly cheap too, with advance tickets.

Sometimes you can get good prices on the one way flights. But you have to be at the airport over an hour early, and then wait for your bags at the other end, hoping they arrive. Still, that way will probably take a little less time overall but then, the last time we flew to Paris, we were stuck waiting on the Manchester runway for over an hour and a half with a delay. Planes and trains both get cancelled but I think planes have more chance of delays. Can’t really use that as an excuse though.

Comfort wise, flying is cramped and crowded. The train in second class still has seats with not a lot of leg room but it’s perhaps a bit more comfortable. First class is nice if you can afford it! Perhaps lots of advance booking might get the Eurostar first class in an affordable range, not so sure about the British trains. I know I have signed up in the past for email notice for the cheap seats in second class when they are released but I can’t recall if they do the same for the first class seats.  I’m still kind of leaning to the train except that it will make the journey longer.

I get myself all in a tizzy over little details like this, long before I even need to think about it! My partner will just say he’s fine with whatever I decide.

The next tizzy will be choosing a hotel! That’s something for a whole other blog post!

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5 thoughts on “Quandaries

  1. Kelly Marney says:

    Heh, I vote for trains, but we schlepped our HUGE bags from the 4th floor of a tiny b&b (no elevator) on Argyle street, to the tube at Kings Cross, on the tube to Paddington Station and then on the train to Heathrow. Biggest issue was the stairs in Kings Cross station. But we did it!! :) And we weren’t the only ones doing that. We are also certifiably insane, I might not hesitate to say…

  2. CanadianTravelBugs says:

    I did the train and it was good -lots of countryside to see and more leg room. Besides a train is easier to move around if you need to get up and stretch. Can you take a smaller bag with wheels? (little larger than carry on size). If you only have 1 bag and a purse it is do-able. We take the speed train to the airport all the time with carry on, purse and 1 bag in Shanghai without issue. We only do taxi if we have extra from a long flight home when our bags are filled with goodies you can only get in Canada.

    • Tvor says:

      The train is good though it would be two trains, see, and the idea was to do it at the end of my holiday so i could fly home direct from London so i would have to bring the big case with me. If we were going back to Manchester after, for another week, i would just take the smaller bag with me to Paris.

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