TGV in brief98431
TGV, the ’Train à Grande Vitesse’ is the fastest way to travel to more than 1400 destinations in Europe. With record-breaking speeds of up to 320 km/h, whether your destination is on the other side of France or beyond the borders you’ll reach it in just a few hours, and with magnificent views of the French countryside

The electric, high-speed TGV, operated by SNCF, transports over 130 million passengers to their destinations every year.

The total number since the service began in 1981 is expected to reach 2 billion in 2010, second only to Japan’s Shinkansen train. France is, quite rightly, very proud of its bullet train service!
 

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The TGV network
Within France TGV trains connect 150 major cities and towns. 

Popular journeys
Paris – Reims (45m)
Paris – Nantes (2h 01m)
Paris – Strasbourg (2h 20m)
Paris – Avignon (2h 40m)
Lille – Lyon (2h 55m)
Paris – Bordeaux (3h)
Paris CDG – Marseille (3h 34m)


TGV trains also connect France with Belgium, Switzerland and Germany where you can continue your journey with other European high-speed services and rail networks.

Popular journeys
Paris CDG – Brussels (1h 14m)
Avignon – Geneva (2h 53m)
Paris – Stuttgart (3h 40m)
 

Our tip
» Be sure to check the departures before and after your ideal time, the less popular the train time, the cheaper it will be.


Before you board
The stations

» Many of the TGV stations are architecturally outstanding; if you have time go outside and take a look at the exteriors. The Gare du Nord, Milano Centrale and Amsterdam Centraal are just a few of the network highlights.


Check-in & boarding
» All TGV train journeys must be reserved beforehand, most tickets are available up to 60 days previously, or they can be reserved in the station before you board.
» Make sure to validate your ticket using the yellow stamp machines, or composteurs, on the platforms before you board the train.
» There are usually two steps up to the carriage so make sure you can lift your luggage, or find a friendly passenger to help.
 

Highlights

Travel in style aboard TGV trains 
» Fashion king Christian Lacroix designed the interiors of the newest TGV trains, so expect to be impressed.

Suddenly you see! 
» On some routes, the double-decker TGV Duplex trains offer an even better view of the passing countryside whilst at high speed.

Aboard TGV trains, comfort is not a legend 
» With the TGV, only the train goes at high speed: you travel in peace and quiet with your family and benefit from the comfort of large seats and all of the services onboard. Upgrade to First class!

 

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