Types of Trains in France
RER – stands for Réseau Express Régional. It's a Paris-only city train connecting the city with the suburbs and merging with the metro line. There 5 lines with around 257 stations (33 within Paris) as is a faster way, comparing to metro for navigating around the city. There’s even a station right next to the Eifel tower. Tickets can be bought at each station at the ticket machine selling transport tickets at the metro or railway station. The fare is same to the metro when you’re travelling within the city and rises once you’re away in the suburbs.
TGV trains run between major French cities, connecting all parts of the country in one huge network, TGV trains run to some destinations abroad too, so you can hop a train from Paris to Amsterdam and get there in just 3 hours!
The system’s so well-crafted that you can get to any place by train and you have numerous options to choose from in what concerns price and travel time.
Any 3rd party providers (like RailEurope.com) will give you a price at least 15% higher and you won’t be able to use any discount cards.
Yet the difficulty here is that SNCF site doesn’t allow you to buy tickets via Internet directly (you’re asked to make a phone call) unless you’re in the country. But this thing can be easily by-passed.
How to buy TGV tickets online from any location
- Voila. Now choose your departure city and destination, correct age group (discounts for youth!) and your preferable time to catch the train. In case you need one way ticket, leave Retour tab empty.
- Browse through the list of trains available at that day with a breakdown in prices and time of travel. Don’t be afraid to miss your connection time. Twenty minutes would be more than enough!
Even if you forgot (drowned, lost, ate) your paper copy, you can name the booking number or hand out your passport and the ticket inspector, so he could just find you in customer base.