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Eurostar

Brisbane, Australia
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39 posts
4 reviews
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Eurostar

Help!!! We will be travelling to Paris from London in June. We considered just the Eurostar. However, I am claustrophobic. I wondered just how tight the space is within the train. My family would like the tunnel experience, however I am not sure how I will handle the trip. Would love to hear from any fellow claustrophobics about their experience if they did use the Eurostar. I would not like to deny my family the experience.

Portland, Oregon
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for Air Travel
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1. Re: Eurostar

Unless you're flying first or business class to the UK, you'll be in a far more claustrophobic environment on the plane than on the Eurostar, and for much longer.

The tunnel is about 20 miles and the train travels through it at 90mph, so that bit will last about 15 minutes. Other than that, it's a train, with most seats in the economy coaches a little more comfortable and roomy than economy on a plane, and without the pesky rules about seatbelts, electronic devices and liquids in you carry ons.

Vancouver, Canada
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for London
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55,344 posts
15 reviews
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2. Re: Eurostar

Eurostar carriages aren't massively spacious, but they're bigger than London Underground cars. There are seats for all; the aisles are wide enough so that pax can walk back and forth to the buffet car without having to squeeze against the seats on either side.

The tunnel experience is a bit underwhelming. There may or may not be an announcement made before things go dark; the time under La Manche is about 20 minutes. Scenery is pleasant but not spectacular.

It's a decent enough two and a quarter hour journey start to finish. The great advantage of Eurostar is that one can travel from city centre to centre, no schlep to the airport then to the city at one's destination, very handy.

French immigration takes place at St Pancras, usually quick and uneventful. Security is similar to that at airports, but the war against hand cream is not in effect: liquids are allowed in one's hand baggage, but open cups of tea or coffee shouldn't be taken through the checkpoint.

Brisbane, Australia
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39 posts
4 reviews
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3. Re: Eurostar

Thank you. Both responses have been very helpful. Should be able to handle the 20 minutes.

UK
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49,561 posts
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4. Re: Eurostar

If you can handle the flight for 20 or so hours, Eurostar is at least as spacious, is only 2 hours, and is better lit when going through the tunnel than your plane interior will be in night periods for much longer times than, as you say, the 20 minutes under the fish.

Edited: 3:42 am, February 24, 2013
Brisbane, Australia
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39 posts
4 reviews
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5. Re: Eurostar

Thank you. I do handle the plane travel. I have used a tunnel under a river in Bisbane. Don't enjoy it, but tolerate it when I have to. I am just glad that my family can enjoy the experience. All respondants have been most reassuring.

Edited: 3:59 am, February 24, 2013
London, United...
Destination Expert
for Berlin
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5,752 posts
81 reviews
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6. Re: Eurostar

If your train happens to be in the evening you might not even notice that you've gone underground. That's happened to me, the only way I knew I was in the tunnel was because the safety doors between the carriages had closed.

Note that there is a second tunnel between Stratford International and St Pancras but that's about 6-7 minutes.

Edited: 6:06 am, February 24, 2013
Michigan
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1,262 posts
186 reviews
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7. Re: Eurostar

We purchased Eurostar tickets to Paris from St Pancras - didn't realize the tunnel was going to take that long! wow

London
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8. Re: Eurostar

Devanai N - my daughter is claustrophobic and has used the Eurostar on more than one occasion without any panic attack. It's really not too bad. I would suggest that when you book and select your seats you choose" table" seats. You can get up and walk down the carriages to the buffet area and so dont have to feel couped up.

Enjoy.

Brisbane, Australia
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39 posts
4 reviews
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9. Re: Eurostar

Thank you. It seems that I would be able to cope with the travel. Thank you for the suggestion of the table seat. You have all been most helpful. Will let fellow claustrophobic travelers know how I fared.

Northern California
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16 posts
2 reviews
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10. Re: Eurostar

I plan on traveling from London to Paris on july 15 and return on the 22nd. When I looked at the pricing on the web site, it differs when booked from the United States site (or tab) than from the UK site. It is $300 less on the UK site. Any explanation why? Any reason why I can't book on the UK site?

Thanks

Edited: 7:36 pm, March 27, 2013