Direct Eurostar to the Alps is dead. Long live the change at Lilles service!

12th July 2023

Tags: Eurostar & Ski Train Holidays 2024/2025 France

Direct Eurostar to the Alps is dead

The direct Eurostar service to the Alps has come to an end, but a new and exciting change awaits travellers at Lille!

Travel Ski, the provider of direct Eurostar ski packages, was unsuccessful in persuading Eurostar to continue the direct service between London and the Alps.

Eurostar has faced significant criticism in the media for discontinuing this route. Prior to the pandemic, Eurostar trains operated on 13 different routes, but currently, they are only running four.

While the rest of the travel industry is recovering from the impact of Covid, Eurostar seems content with diminished operations.

The reasons behind Eurostar’s decision to cancel this popular service remain unclear. Company Des Alpes, the ultimate owner of Travel Ski, guaranteed every seat sale, so Eurostar likely had profitable contracts in place.

This decision may be linked to Eurostar’s merger with the Italian train company Thalys. Starting from October 2023, trains from both companies will be branded as Eurostar.

The St Pancras terminal may no longer be suitable as an international train station due to post-Brexit paperwork checks. Despite assurances from Jacob Reece Mogg and the ERG think tanks, these additional border checks are causing congestion. Space is limited at St Pancras, making it difficult to accommodate the checks.

Travel Ski has devised a plan B, which they aim to launch within a month. The new route involves departing on a Saturday morning via Eurostar to Lille. Upon arrival at Lille, passengers will conveniently change trains on the opposite platform before continuing the journey on a high-speed service to Moutiers and Borg St Maurice.

The return journey from the Alps will depart on the following Sunday morning, again with a change at Lille, before arriving in London on Sunday late afternoon or early evening.

Ski Line believes that the new route will operate, but there may be a more limited choice of accommodations, particularly during peak weeks