Saturday, July 20, 2013

Crossing the English Channel

There has been a fair amount of correspondance in the "Guardian" and on cycling forums recently about the decision by Eurostar to reduce the size of the biggest packet allowed as carry-on luggage to a maximum of 85cm. It was formerly 120cm. This makes crossing the Channel with a bike on Eurostar more difficult and more expensive especially for non-Londoners. Check the AtoB website ( for details. One way round this is to take a ferry or use the bike shuttle operated by Eurotunnel Le Shuttle who run the vehicle carrying trains under the Channel. If you wish to travel to Paris and then farther by train there is a snag though with both options. SNCF (French Railways) are upgrading many of their long distance trains to TGV standard. Not all TGVs take accompanied bikes. The last bike-carrying TGV leaves Calais Frethun station by the entrance to the Channel Tunnel at 12:32, so if one wants to travel on to Paris take an early ship to Calais. The Eurotunnel option drops one too late in Calais. The DFDS service to Dunkirk is a better bet. The voyage needs to be followed by a 20km ride from the port to Dunkirk station. There is good service of bike carrying trains to Paris from there. The AtoB website reviews all the possibilities of crossing over and under the Channel. We try to keep it as up-to-date as possible.

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