Written by the Bimblers, August 26, 2022
Paris is one of the world’s favourite destinations for tourists.
As I mentioned in Wheelchair Accessible Places to Visit in Paris, it’s on my bucket list.
As you probably know, you can get to Paris by bus, flight, or train from London.
Flying used to be the quickest way to get to Paris. But, considering the accessibility hassles at airports, travelling by train is a sensible alternative.
And, on the whole, the reports I’ve seen of people travelling by Eurostar in a wheelchair all seem positive.
Also, many of you have reported that travel by train is more comfortable because you can stay in your wheelchair.
So, in this post, I want to take a closer look at the accessibility of London to Paris trains.
But, before we do that, let’s take a quick look at why Paris is so popular.
Why is Paris a Popular Destination for People with Access Needs?
Over the years, Paris has become one of the most popular travel destinations among disabled bloggers.
Here are two reasons that Paris is so popular:
#1 – Famous Landmarks
The world’s best-known landmarks are in Paris, including Eiffel Tower, Louvre Museum, Notre Dame Cathedral, and Arc De Triomphe.
You can read the first-hand experience of visiting some of these landmarks in Wheelchair Accessible Paris.
#2 – The Food Scene
It would be impossible to visit Paris and not sample the food.
Paris is a food mecca; from intimate cafes to world-renowned restaurants, Paris has them in abundance.
According to the luxury magazine Forbes, here are the Top 20 Restaurants in Paris
And Vogue recommends these iconic cafes in Paris.
I cannot review access in these eateries, so if you plan on visiting, do your homework before you go.
Travelling on Eurostar from London to Paris
When we visit Paris, we’ll almost certainly be travelling on Eurostar because London to Paris takes a little over 2 hours.
I’d look for deals on Omio. Tickets are easy to book through Omio because they are a transport hub and experts in train travel across Europe and beyond. To maximise your discount, use a disabled person’s rail card.
Eurostar rules recommend that people needing special assistance book a standard premier or business premier ticket.
Once you’ve booked your ticket, arrange special assistance with Eurostar. Do this at least 48 hours before you travel.
Eurostar has a helpful special assistance and accessibility guide, which you can read here.
Accessibility at Train Stations
St Pancras station in London and Paris Gare du Nord in Paris is accessible, with special assist teams ready to assist you when you arrive.
Ensure you arrive 75 minutes before departure to clear customs and report to the special assistance meeting point.
Assistance to Board Eurostar
Pre-book a ramp to help you board your train.
I have seen images of one of the ramps used at Eurostar, which is not a ramp. It’s a platform that lifts you in your chair up to the train; pretty cool!
Accessibility on Board Eurostar
Depending on the assistance you’ve booked, you’ll be guided to your wheelchair space or seat.
There are accessible toilets on board the train.
Standard premier passengers receive light refreshments during the journey.
Assistance to Alight Eurostar
When it’s time to descend, the assistance team will meet you at the train and provide a ramp or lift to help you off the train.
You’ll then be guided through the station as quickly as possible so you can go on to enjoy Paris.
One day soon, we’ll visit Paris.
If you’re planning on visiting Paris, I hope this quick guide is useful.
It’s not meant to be extensive. Travelling with a disability requires much more planning, but you should be able to find all of the information you need via the links in this post.
Eurostar Train – Pixabay
Arch de Triomph – Unsplash
Paris Cafe – Unsplash