There is a saying “By plane, By train, By boat, By bus… It doesn’t matter as long as I can still travel!”
If you have little cash, free time and are not in a huge rush it is worth considering travelling from London to Paris by Bus. It is arguably the cheapest option at the moment. Eurolines (Part of National express), iDBUS and Megabus are the three major bus lines travelling between the two capitals and to other key cities like Amsterdam, Brussels etc. Prices start from as low as £14 one way to Paris and some bus lines have free wifi on board.
I recently explored the Eurolines bus service from London to Paris. The bus trips are usually overnight with duration of about 10 hours.
What to expect
– You are usually expected to arrive at the national express coach station in Victoria about 1hr before, your Visa will be checked at the station before you proceed to your bus. I arrived less than an hour before my take off time, worried I had missed my bus but there was a long queue of people on my coach waiting for their visas to be checked at the counter as well.
– Your luggage will be collected before you enter the bus (2 medium sized baggage are free). The seats are unassigned so you can seat anywhere you like. The seats recline, there is a USB port for charging your phone above your seat and a toilet is available on the bus.
– A few hours into your journey, you will be stopped at the border control at Dover and asked to disembark the bus and then your visa will be checked border control. Some people on my bus were turned back.
– Then you will arrive at the ferry that takes you from Dover to Calais. Once your bus boards the ferry, you will all need to disembark the bus and go up the ferry deck for about 1hr 45 minutes. You can buy food and drinks on the deck and also do some shopping; but most people were sleeping all around. Our journey took about an hour longer due to the reported migrant crisis.
– When you arrive at Calais, you get back on the bus, it drives off the ferry and you continue your journey to Paris till you arrive at Gallieni Metro station.
– If you thought you could sleep all through the bus ride for the whole 10 hours then you’ll be disappointed.
I would recommend going with the coach if you have free time and you are not in a hurry as it is probably the cheapest way to get from London to Paris and it was considerably comfortable. It’s better for at the very least a 3 day trip but even better longer trip to make the 10 hour journey worthwhile and allow you relax as well.
What’s your preference?
How do you travel between London and Paris? Share your tips with us in the comments section!
Paris Gallieni Metro station is at the same location as the coach station.