Saturday, October 25, 2008
SNCF Can Bite Me
I’m ready to leave France. One week here and I’m alternately annoyed and enraged with France’s national railway system.
Joe and I have 21 day Eurail passes, good for unlimited travel within most European countries. These were not cheap. On heavy travel days (weekends and holidays) we’re encouraged to make reservations ahead of time on the most popular train routes. On the TGV (bullet train) routes, you can’t travel without a reservation. OK, no problem. I learned my lesson after Luxembourg: I’m making reservations.
When we arrived in Caen on Thursday, we solidified our travel plans for the next few days. I went to the train station in Caen to make reservations for Saturday travel on the TGV. Our goal was to make it to Southern France (Marseille) late Saturday afternoon/early Saturday evening. There are about 6 or 7 trains from Paris to Marseille every Saturday morning/early afternoon and there must be two seats in 1st class available, right? Wrong. Oh, there are plenty of seats available, all right, but only a limited number are open to Eurail pass users. Just like the airlines and frequent flier travel, you are limited in your travel options. Pisser. So now we’re not getting into Marseille until after 9 pm and if I don’t get any freaking bouillabaisse tonight, I’m going to be irked.
/end of rant
Update: No bouillabaisse. Pffffft.