Channel Tunnel

Operators

Ways to travel Using The Channel Tunnel

Thereís nothing quite like a romantic weekend away to Europe, or even exposing the kids to a bit of continental culture. If you are considering a trip to the continent, be it Lille, Paris, Brussels, or further a field, the Channel Tunnel might be the right option for you.

More choice for crossing the Channel

It was initially thought that the advent of the Channel Tunnel would surpass the need for ferries from Dover to Calais, but it has not been the case. Both prove to be popular among different kinds of travellers looking for different types of holidays. You have a few options to choose from if youíre considering a Channel Tunnel crossing. Freight trains run directly from Folkestone in Kent straight through to Calais. If you are a fan of driving holidays, or driving yourself to the European city of your choice for a weekend break, this might appeal to you. You literally drive yourself onto a train, much like you would with a ferry. At the time of writing, Eurotunnel prices start from £39 per car for a single trip. You can travel with up to nine passengers in your car, there is direct motorway access from each end of the tunnel, and trains run up to three times in an hour. Hop on, and in only 35 minutes, you can be in France, ready to drive on to wherever your heart desires.

Channel Tunnel without the car

Eurostar trains are the other option. If you donít drive, or driving whilst on holiday sounds like your worst nightmare, you might be better off going by passenger train. The main high-speed line runs from London Kings Cross, St Pancras to many destinations once you reach the continent; Lille, Paris, Brussels, and onwards to Bruges, the choice is yours. This way, you can just pack your bags and travel from city to city in a much more relaxed atmosphere, with out the hassle of traffic or expensive fuel costs. Eurostar trains are surprisingly fast. Trains from London to Paris take only 2 hours 15 minutes, and trains from London to Brussels are just 1 hour 50 minutes. A lot of travel agencies offer packages, which will include your Eurostar ticket plus hotel accommodation for the duration of your stay. At the time of writing, a return Eurostar ticket can go for as little as £55. Just a quick reminder: donít forget your passport!

A lot of people are put off by the idea of the Channel Tunnel due to phobias. Fear of the dark and claustrophobia can prevent people from going anywhere near an underwater passageway. However, the journey is fast and comfortable, a lot of people donít even notice their fears once they are settled on a plush train, or having a picnic in their car. The underground section of the tunnel lasts only 35 minutes. Furthermore, the great benefit of travelling using the Channel Tunnel rather than the usual Dover-to-Calais ferries is an obvious one: you know you wonít be suffering from any kind of seasickness!

If you do choose to travel using the Channel Tunnel, be it by Eurostar or your own car on a Eurotunnel car train, try to think of it not only as a fast way of getting to your destination, but also as a feat of engineering so massive that its history spans over 200 years. It is a humbling thought as the dark underwater passageway envelops you: a dim historical subway with a bright and successful future at the end of the tunnel.

Channel Tunnel Operators

Eurostar | Eurotunnel