by Malin, posted 03 March 2014 | Add comment
Have you always wanted to visit Switzerland but have never really found the time? Well, this year there is a perfect opportunity to hop across the border and spend a day in Geneva. TGV Lyria has a great new day trip offer. The cheap train tickets from Paris to Geneva cost €49 in 2nd class seats. For those who prefer a bit of luxury, 1st class return tickets cost only €99. This offer will be valid until the end of the year, so if you aren’t planning on being in Paris for another few months, you can always buy your train tickets 90 days in advance and visit later a bit later on.
So, how does it work?
If you aren’t one of us already, join the Capitaine Train community by signing up. Then, all you have to do is search for your tickets using our book and search engine. A few trains are available each day for the special day-trip price of €24.50 for a one-way ticket in 2nd class and €49.50 for a one-way ticket in 1st class. Though remember, a day trip means you also have to return on the same day. Our personal advice to you would be to book your outbound train from Paris early in the morning and your return train from Geneva later at night. This way you will get the most of what the city has to offer. Additionally, if you are travelling on the TGV Duplex, then we most certainly recommend reserving a seat on the upper deck. There are some spectacular views on this journey, and the 1st class Club Duo (face-to-face) seat is perfect for two passengers.
Taking a train to Geneva
Your train will arrive in Geneva’s Cornavin station. There are up to 9 trains a day, running direct service from Geneva to Paris with a journey time of 3 hours. You can also take a direct train from Nice to Geneva in just 6 hours. Though unfortunately this route is not included in the discount day-trip fares. For those looking to travel to warmer pastures, Geneva is also the starting point for the night train service to Barcelona, which takes just about nine and a half hours.
I’ve arrived! Where to go?
Once you have arrived in Geneva, it is extremely easy to jump on a tram or a bus from the train station. Gare Cornavin is exceptionally well designed, not in terms of architecture but in terms of practicality instead. The city tram and bus routes converge at a terminal located directly outside the front doors of the station, making transition from train to public transit extremely easy. You will find an underground passage in the station’s basement-level shopping concourse, which connects to the south side of the busy main street, so you can avoid crossing busy roads. The passage also connects to a lovely, open-air pedestrian-only shopping street, leading down to the lake.
What to do in Geneva?
Not only is Geneva the home to a huge range of international, namely diplomatic, institutions but it also houses CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research. So if international relations and NGO’s are your thing, then Geneva is your city. You can take a tour of the Palace of Nations (the former United Nations headquarters). Just across the road, you will find the International Red Cross headquarters and its respective museum. You can also organise a tour of CERN, if you fancy yourself a bit of a science geek. The team at Capitaine Train would love get a glimpse of the LHC, so if you get a chance, we’d always like to see photos.
Of course, Geneva does have plenty more to offer. It is a city known for its beautiful lake, Lac Léman, which is surrounded by Alps. At the lake, you’ll find Geneva’s most famous landmark, the Jet d’Eau. It is definitely worth a visit. Though, if you dislike getting wet, then you should probably know that the surrounding half-kilometre is soaked with water. However, the more adventurous might want to try the pathway leading right up to the Jet d’Eau; prepare to get enjoyably wet!
Not to miss, is admiring the city’s historic architecture, especially the Cathédrale Saint-Pierre in the old town (in French: vieille ville).
Lastly, if you feel like stretching your legs before boarding your train back to Paris, have a look at this website for more information about the many parks in Geneva.
If you have any queries about these day trip fares (or about anything in general) you can of course get in touch with our support team. We will be glad to help!
After a long waiting period, Capitaine Train can now finally sell train tickets from France to Spain (or from Spain to France) for dates later than March 30th. Our team was able to give out a big sigh of relief today, the tickets had just become available from SNCF.
Well, the story goes like this: We had spent many weeks keeping our customers up to date on the ticket release hoping that everything would go seamlessly … Unfortunately it didn’t. Renfe (the Spanish rail carrier) and SNCF work in cooperation for this joint train line. As the trains are extremely popular, especially the Paris to Barcelona train, additional trains were being added. This meant that the fare release for tickets departing after March 30th would be indefinitely delayed. A few weeks ago, everyone heard rumours that finally (!) the tickets would be on sale on the 15th of February. We anxiously communicated to our customers that hopefully the 15th would be the date to buy tickets. Of course Murphy’s Law came into play and things didn’t go as planned. Right before the train tickets were due to become available, we found out that only Renfe would be releasing them. SNCF were due to release the tickets on the 25th of February instead.
But where are the train tickets?
As we don’t have access to Renfe’s reservation system, we were unable to sell the tickets. This was really hard for us. Not from a business point of view but because of our customers. We had all invested a lot of time telling everyone exactly what was going on and that we would be the first ones to let them know when they can buy their tickets. So it felt like we had made a promise that had to be delayed to deliver. Many customers were anxious to get their hands on the Paris to Barcelona tickets in April, so time was of the essence. It was a sad day in the office of Capitaine Train.
Loyalty can go a long way
We had to make sure that our customers knew why we couldn’t sell these tickets at that point in time, and instead would be available 10 days later. We didn’t want anyone to be confused or missing out on these tickets (even if they were being purchased elsewhere). Capitaine Train then realised just how many loyal and appreciative customers we truly have. Plenty of customers came back to us and said that they were happy to wait an extra few days because they only wanted to buy with us. They had received fantastic customer support, knew the prices would be the lowest available and wanted to be able to select their seats. It was an awesome experience being able to see just how dedicated our users are to us. For that we want to say a big, big THANK YOU!
Can I now buy train tickets?
by Malin, posted 31 January 2014 | Add comment
From London to Provence in just 6 hours
You can now hop on a train from London St Pancras or Ashford International and find yourself in the south of France within 6 hours. Eurostar has just launched a direct train service for this upcoming summer. It will run once a week from London St Pancras or Ashford International, directly to Avignon, France. The weekly service will depart every Saturday, which will give you just enough time for at least one week of wine, cheese and sightseeing in this historic centre of southern France.
Head south to the sunshine
The outbound trains departing London St Pancras and Ashford International will commence on 28 June 2014 and run until 6 September 2014. Return trains will begin on 5 July 2014 until 13 September 2014.
Outbound trip – London St Pancras to Avignon Centre
|London St Pancras||Depart 07:17|
|Ashford International||Depart 07:55|
|Avignon Centre||Arrive 13:53|
Travel time: 5h36
Return trip – Avignon Centre to London St Pancras
|Avignon Centre||Depart 16:39|
|Ashford International||Arrive 21:05|
|London St Pancras||Arrive 21:42|
Travel time: 06h03
Wake up and smell the lavender
There is no doubt that these convenient direct tickets will sell out extremely fast. Who wouldn’t want to travel over 1,100 km in under 6 hours to see the lavender fields? You can start booking your tickets 6 months in advance. The sales are are already open for outward tickets and return tickets, so book these tickets now.
Need a holiday ASAP?
Of course, those who don’t want to wait five more months to visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site can book their tickets today. All Eurostar trains from London St Pancras or Ashford International to Avignon will have a connection at Paris or Lille. These trains depart up to 7 days a week and you can book them right here!
2013 was a great year for Capitaine Train. More users, train stations, carriers and of course, more love!
Thank you to everyone for this fantastic year. If 2014 continues in the same fashion, we’ll be happier than ever.
If we played Risk rather than selling train tickets, then Europe would be named the Capitaine Train Kingdom instead. The complete list of all the countries and stations we serve can be found here.
We are sure there are plenty of others, but we have counted our favourite tweets (they’re mostly in French). So if you would like to inform the English speaking world about Capitaine Train, follow us and tweet a declaration of love @CptTrainEN.
Mario Kart Wii Races
Yes, that is a bit over 10 races per day (working days). If you don’t believe us, you should know that we have just unlocked Toadette (only the true gamers will understand).
Available train stations
And we’re still counting. This year there should be plenty more stations to come. Here is some more information on the most recently added stations.
Times we helped our customers
According to our stats, regardless of the time of day, we replied to our customers within 31 min and 13s.
Discount and loyalty cards added
This is a little more than one card per 4 passengers. If you haven’t added your cards yet, you should really do so. It’s never too late.
Users as of 31/12/13
Our train loving community keeps on growing! So keep on rockin’ in a free world.
If we were to line up all of our tickets, back to back, there would be nothing to see. Why? Because we mostly sell E-tickets!
Giving you the convenience of pre-booking and putting your tickets on hold is easy. So easy that it’s completely automated.
That’s about 1.6 passengers per person. Hopefully that doesn’t mean you’re travelling with only half a person …
1 314 127
That’s more than a third of the total amount of Google searches made globally … in 1998.
Created in 2009, Thalys TheCard is a free loyalty card which allows you to accumulate Miles. It offers many benefits for the occasional or frequent user of Thalys trains. As most travellers are still fairly unaware of it, we thought writing a small blog post about TheCard might be fairly useful.
The complete list of the TheCard benefits can be found on the website of the Thalys loyalty program. These are our favourite benefits:
- Info SMS
- Waiting lounges
- Partner offers and discounts
Thalys now offers you ‘Ticketless’ paperless tickets, which are essentially E-tickets. This means no more queuing at the station or dealing with lost tickets. The best way to benefit from Capitaine Train is to use your Thalys TheCard. Once you have booked and paid for your Thalys ticket, it is automatically stored on your TheCard. So you no longer have to print anything; it’s all organised for you. Simply present your Thalys TheCard on board and voilà! It will save you time and earn you Miles.
It is especially useful to have a TheCard if you need to purchase a ticket which must be picked up at a French SNCF station, and you happen to reside outside of France. For this reason, we always prefer our users to use a Thalys TheCard when booking outside of France.
Thalys TheCard now offers you plenty of flexibility with your tickets. Booked too early or too late? No worries! The Semi Flex and Flex fares will solve all of your problems:
- Semi Flex: You can take a train directly after or before the one initially booked on the same day.
- Flex: You can take any train departing on the same day for the same route.
For every euro spent, you’ll earn Miles. After you have completed ten trips in one year, you will start receiving twice as many Miles per trip. These Miles can be exchanged against Eurostar and Thalys tickets. Unfortunately you cannot yet exchange your Miles on our website. For this you will have to visit the Thalys website. You can also use the Miles to buy gifts from the Thalys online shop.
|Level||Trips per year||Conversion||Validity|
|Silver||1 – 9||€1 = 1 Mile||2 Years|
|Gold||10 – 27||€1 = 2 Miles||2 Years|
|Platinum||28 – 99||€1 = 2 Miles||2 Years|
|Platinum+||100+||€1 = 2 Miles||Unlimited|
4. Info SMS
You’ll receive a short message one hour prior to departure, with your seat number and traffic information in case there are any disruptions. It’s super convenient!
5. Waiting Lounges
Arrived early at the station? Your Thalys TheCard gives you access to the Thalys lounge. You can find a lounge at the following stations:
- Thalys Lounge Brussels Midi
- Thalys Store&More at Cologne Station
- Salon Grand Voyageur at Paris-Nord
6. Partner offers and discounts
Take advantage of exclusive discounts and rates with these partners and organisations:
- Accor and Design Hotels
- Business lounges
- Taxis and Europcar car hire
- Museums, Relay libraries, museums, exhibitions, concert and ski hire all over Europe
How to get a Thalys TheCard
TheCard is completely free and can be used for personal or business travel. To receive or use TheCard simply:
Since we first started, we have always known that our greatest strength lies in the word of mouth. When we are asked why Capitaine Train is the best way to buy train tickets, we often respond that it’s best to just let our customers speak for themselves.
Today we have launched our Ambassador program to reward your enthusiasm and loyalty. By inviting your family and friends you can save up to €90 on your next ticket. A big thank you to: Cédric, Paul and Pierre for their work on this feature.
How does it work?
- You begin by liking Capitaine Train; to the extent that you want to tell all of your friends about us.
- You invite them by email, tweet or even pigeon post. All that matters is that they use your custom link.
- Your friends then register with us and receive a €3 discount as a welcome gift to use with their first ticket purchase.
- Once they have made their first trip, you'll receive points that can be converted into Capitaine Train vouchers.
- You are incredible! People will start recognising you in public.
But, I've already invited all my friends …
If you have been a fan since the very beginning, you’re probably thinking to yourself: "I have invited absolutely everyone in my family, my distant cousins, my boss and pretty much most of my fellow primates and I didn’t even get a lousy t-shirt!"
To all of you, we'd firstly like to say THANK YOU! Honestly. We also want to offer you an appreciation point on your Ambassador account to reward your loyalty. We’ve also decided to give an extra point to the 250 people who have made the most referrals in the past.
It’s now your turn.
We’re counting on you to spread the word about Capitaine Train. We could spend our time trying to convince people, however nothing beats the trusted advice of a friend or a loved one.
Get started! Become a Capitaine Train Ambassador.
The first TGV from Paris to Barcelona will depart on the 15th of December! It was officially announced yesterday by François Hollande and Mariano Rajoy (if like us, you also have difficulties pronouncing "Rajoy", take a look here).
Now it may not seem like a big deal at first, but this is a pretty big event for the rail industry in Europe. This has been a project for over 20 years, involving the construction of many new train stations and high-speed rail tracks.
The two largest high-speed rail operators in Europe, SNCF and Renfe, are now truly connected. A total of 17 cities will be served by four main connections:
- Paris - Barcelona (6.25 hours)
- Lyon - Barcelona (4.53 hours)
- Toulouse - Barcelona (3.02 hours)
- Marseille - Barcelona - Madrid (4.17 and 7.03 hours)
Parisians will gain an additional 20 minutes on the current route (this is the time it used take to change trains in Figueres). It is also a major step forward for Toulousains and Marseillais. As for those Lyon, this is now the second connection available as there is already an existing connection with iDBUS which takes 8.5 hours for a one-way journey and for only €9.
Also, it is possible to travel on these French and Spanish routes without crossing the border. For instance you may take a Renfe train from Paris to Nimes.
As of December 3rd, you can purchase tickets for up to three months in advance. The fares are identical on both sides of the border, as the prices are determined by the joint venture of Renfe-SNCF:
- Paris - Barcelona starting from €59
- Lyon - Barcelona starting from €49
- Toulouse - Barcelona starting from €39
- Marseille - Madrid starting from €89
And finally, the journey from Paris to Barcelona will be aboard a TGV Duplex whilst on all other routes you will travel on the AVE S-100, the Spanish luxury train (quick hidden camera tour).
by Carl, posted 18 November 2013 | Add comment
Thanks to our partnership with Deutsche Bahn and their excellent Europe-wide offers, we can now announce that we have added over 1300 new train stations to Capitaine Train.
Deutsche Bahn, being one of the largest transport carriers in the world, covers nearly all European countries. This gives our customers more options and possibilities to book their train trips within Europe.
We now have an even greater coverage of countries, and we have been able to add even more stations to our network. In total, we have added 1300 additional stations in 12 different countries.
New train stations
- Austria: 132
- Belgium: 433
- Czech Republic: 14
- Denmark: 203
- Hungary: 23
- Italy: 18
- Luxembourg: 5
- Netherlands: 223
- Poland: 21
- Sweden: 29
- Switzerland: 214
- Slovenia: 9
More reduction cards
In addition to adding new stations and destinations, we have also integrated the reduction cards for Switzerland (Half-fare), Austria (VORTEILScard) and the Netherlands (Voordeelurenabonnement).
You can now add these cards to your passenger profile and benefit from even cheaper train tickets when booking from or to these countries.
Today we are thrilled to announce that Capitaine Train has launched its first app! You can find it on the App Store.
You can now book all of your train tickets using our easy, fast and efficient application. Wherever you are, wherever you want to go. From the palm of your hand. In seconds.
You can sign in up and start adding all of your personal details in less than a minute.
Mobile and desktop. It’s all in sync.
If you already have an account, simply login in with your existing user credentials and voila! You’re ready to go. You can search for a trip, then save it in your cart via the app and finish the payment later on your desktop computer (or vice versa). Whether it’s adding new passengers, editing discount cards or updating your information; it’s all in sync between the app and our website.
Booking a journey is a breeze. Just pick your departure and destination, search, book and pay.
We have also integrated a help menu with direct access to our support team, so you can get in touch with us without ever leaving the app.
We hope to have made your life a bit easier with our app. Allowing our customers to save time when booking their tickets is always a number one priority. So we wanted to present you an app that reflects the same amount of care we put into our website.
Last but not least, please let us know about any errors, issues or suggestions you may have, so you can help us make the the best train ticket booking app available.
P.S. To all the Android users out there; we are currently developing an Android version of our application. We take the time necessary to create the best experience possible for each platform. We don’t believe in average or low-quality services so please be patient with us. We certainly haven’t forgotten about you!
iDBUS for the budget conscious
You can now save yourself a lot of money by using iDBUS. It’s ideal for backpackers, students or anyone who loves travelling throughout Europe by bus.
We are proud to be able to offer a cheaper alternative for those who don’t want to spend a lot of money on train travel. iDBUS serves the following destinations: Aix-en-Provence, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Brussels, Genoa, Lille, London, Lyon, Marseille, Milan, Nice, Paris and Turin.
If you’re now thinking of cheap or hippy-like busses from the 70’s, think again. iDBUS has an ultramodern fleet that offers very comfortable long haul journeys.
The buses are state of the art, with plenty of leg room and seating space; an 8 hour trip will seem like a breeze. Plus, you can enjoy plenty of freely available onboard amenities. This includes free WiFi during your entire trip and electrical powerpoint sockets at your seat. You’ll never have to worry about being out of touch or whether your smartphone, tablet or laptop are charged before your journey.
The best thing about iDBUS are the clearly fixed low prices; they don’t depend on when you book but rather when you want travel. So if you choose a smart date, you can travel from Lyon to Barcelona for just €19. You can also find excellent promotions such as Lille to Amsterdam for only €9! You can’t even visit the top of the Eiffel Tower for those prices.
What is unique about iDBUS tickets?
iDBUS has fairly specific ticket conditions, so it’s always good to be aware of these before booking:
- iDBUS tickets are not refundable.
- iDBUS tickets are exchangeable up to 12 hours prior to departure (€5 charge per passenger online or €10 per passenger by phone).
- iDBUS tickets are only exchangable against another iDBUS ticket.
- iDBUS tickets must be printed on A4 paper.
- SNCF reductions and discounts do not apply to iDBUS tickets.
- Your free wifi is always available regardless of the country you are in.
Book your tickets with us now!