Day Trip to Paris

travel edit

UK is set to leave the EU and we probably won’t have the luxury of travelling anywhere in Europe by just buying a train/plane ticket. I wanted to take advantage this luxury before the self-destruction starts and decided to take the day off and take a train to Paris.

Preparations

As this is a daily trip I didn’t plan too much about it. Here’s all I did:

  • Buy a return ticket from Eurostar (from London St. Pancras to Paris Gare Du Nord and back). This set me back £88 which is not too bad for international travel.
  • I only packed my iPad Pro and a couple powerbanks. The idea is to balance functionality with weight.
  • As proven in Norway and Sweden trips, roaming works well with GiffGaff. There’s no additional charge and I was able to use my phone just as I could in London.
  • No need to buy Euros as planned to use card for all the transactions. Might cost some extra bank charges but at least eliminates the hassle of buying cash and selling it back.
  • Found a blog post called Paris in a Day and planning to visit the places mentioned in that post. Let’s see how many of them I’ll manage to actually see:

    • Notre Dame
    • The Louvre
    • Champs-Élysées
    • Arc de Triomphe
    • Eiffel Tower
    • Seine River Cruise
    • Tour Montparnasse

The Trip

  • I arrived at St. Pancras International about 1 hour earlier. I didn’t know there were security checks and passport controls but apparently there are checks carried out by the French police so I’m glad I didn’t treat it as a commuter train and tried to board at the last minute.
  • 15 minutes after departure more passengers boarded at Ebbsfleet.
  • A message on the screen said we were travelling at 295 km/h

  • On return journey, it also stopped at Ashford International station.

Paris

It was a nice sunny day and I walked around all day. Spent most of the time going to The Eiffel Tower and a 2-hour hop on/off bus tour. Here’s some pictures from the trip:

Lessons Learned

  • I didn’t buy any Euros for this trip assuming I could pay for everything by card. It didn’t quite work out that way. They don’t accept card in public toilets which may be a very important issue depending on your liquid consumption! Also in a convenience store minimum amount to use card was €6 so had to make some unnecessary purchases just to meet the minimum.
  • In a daily trip time is of essence so there’s a feeling of rushing everything. For example I skipped going up The Eiffel Tower becasue the queue was too long.

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