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tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

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Chicago, Illinois
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tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

we arrive sunday afternoon in paris.

We'd like to take the first train to Caen Wednesday morning ( 6:45 am )

So we don't have to wiat in line and get all nervous, can we buy tickets Monday or tuesdy while we walk around?

Do we have to be at St Lazare to buy the ticket?

San Diego
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1. Re: tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

Yes, you can. We bought tickets to go to Giverny a few days ahead of time at Gare du Nord, even though the train left from St. Lazare.

Chicago, Illinois
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2. Re: tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

So it has to be at one of the large train stations?

San Diego
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3. Re: tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

Yes, at the metro stations they only sell metro or RER tickets. You need to go to the Grande Lignes counter (or maybe from a machine - not sure as I wanted to talk to someone when I got the tickets.) At Gare du Nord, that counter was upstairs, while the metro ticket counter was downstairs. We used that station because we had come from London on the Eurostar.

Le Bugue, France
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4. Re: tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

It has to be one of the train stations, period. Or you can buy them at any SNCF boutique.

Paris, France
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5. Re: tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

You may purchase tickets on line, at any train station (not a métro station), or at any SNCF boutique.

Chicago, Illinois
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6. Re: tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

Whats SNCF?

I don't mind buying on-line if they'll work of once I get there?

Le Bugue, France
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7. Re: tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

SNCF is the French national railway. Of course they'll work once you get there. Just like Amtrak tickets work once you get to whatever station you're leaving from.

Chicago, Illinois
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8. Re: tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

in fact you would be wise to do so. We missed the train to Vernon when we wanted to go because it took me over an hour to get the ticket (locals can use machines but Americans can't with out obsolete credit cards and so the people in line are often doing complicated things. The line was a couple blocks long (unusual but not unheard of) We ended up going the next day. We were not on a tight schedule so it wasn't a problem but it would be a shame on your more rushed trip. These are local non reserved train tickets and can be used any time (so be sure to validate before you get on the train.)

janettravels44

www.janettravels.wordpress.com

Edited: 25 April 2014, 04:41
Paris
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9. Re: tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

Hey Mike S,

It is definitely wisest to buy these tickets in advance (and online to make it easier for you). Buying in advance will ensure that you have an assigned seat and that you are prepared :) If you buy at the station then hopefully you don't have to wait an hour in a ticket line (they can be suuuuper long). Also be aware that many ticket machines in France will not accept cards that don't have a chip, so if this is the case for you then it could be easier to buy online.

Edited: 25 April 2014, 15:35
Chicago, Illinois
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10. Re: tickets from paris / caen ahead of time

We have also bought tickets to Caen on line and if you do this 90 days in advance, it only costs 15 Euro. And these trains do have assigned seats -- definitely don't wait till the morning of the trip.