Carcassonne - Montpellier Train Advice
Replies: 14 - Last Post: Sep 5, 2012 1:44 PM Last Post By: uberteeb
Sep 3, 2012 1:17 PM
Carcassonne - Montpellier Train AdviceBonjour,
I'm flying to Carcassonne from Glasgow (Prestwick) on Sunday 16 Sept and returning Thurs 20 Sept. I am going to Montpellier, can I buy train tickets at Carcassonne station to Montpellier on the day of arrival or should I buy them in advance?
I have read Seat 61 website. The TGV Europe site doesn't show the train that suits me best, leaving Carcassonne at 12.56 because this is a direct 'Ten' train (possibly 'Ter', the font on the website isn't clear). I can however book this through RailEurope website in £. Is this the best way to do it? Also, if I miss this train what happens. The terms on the RailEurope site for this ticket says exchangeable up to departure, but if I'm not actualy at the station before departure, flight delay for example, what happens then?
Sep 3, 2012 1:18 PM
1Also, a Google search says shuttle bus is 5 Euro each from airport to Carcasonne and taxi is around 12 Euro, would that be the price to the train staion in Carcasonne and how long would that journey take by taxi and bus.
I ask because it is not an official website I got the information from.
Sep 3, 2012 3:49 PM
2You will be able to buy tickets at the station. You can either buy them at the window or you can buy them in the automatic machines. The TER is a slower, regional train making many stops and you do not need a seat reservation. I was just looking up the route you preferred, and the one that leaves at 12.56 requires you to change in Narbonne to a TGV (which a seat reservation is necessary). Since this is the case, I would buy tickets ahead of time because the TGV ticket price can go up or sell out the longer you wait. If your credit card has a "chip" on it, you should be able to use it in the machines to access your tickets using the code they email to you after you purchase them.
Sep 3, 2012 10:03 PM
The 'Navette" goes directly to the Gare, so no problem. Short distance, parts of the drive quite scenic.
If you have a few extra euros, I'd suggest a taxi as there's nothing scenic about the Carca airport and the Gare is right next to the Canl du Midi. Once you have your train ticket and know the schedule if you have time, you can walk across the bridge and get a quick sandwich/meal. Can't recommend the cafe in the station, maybe it's improved.
Do remember the space/weight limitations.....(airline). A friend flew from Belgium. He always packs light and still had to end up wearing most of his clothing to bring what he wanted.
Hope you have a good visit!
Sep 3, 2012 11:20 PM
Sep 4, 2012 2:26 AM
5Thank you for replies, my French goes no further than basic speach which is probably wrong half the time, I am therefore not able to use the sncf site as it is only in French. The English TGV Europe site as recommended by seat61.com doesn't show the regional TER train which is the one I need because of my flight times.
Therefore I think my only options are buy from raileurope or buy at station. Since one part of journey is TGV and needs reservations should I just buy form raileurope?
I know that it is a site that prays on stupid tourists with added fees but as a first time visitor to France I probably fall under stupid tourist and it doesn't seem very much more expensive? If the price is the same I am happy to buy at train station, if I give details to ticket office for my return Montpellier - Carcassonne on 20th Sept can they sell me the ticket on 16th Sept?
But what if I buy in advance ticket from raileurope and then my flight is delayed and I arrive at station after my train has departed? Do you have to buy a new full price ticket like in UK?
Edited by: uberteeb
Sep 4, 2012 2:35 AM
6I just put your dates in here; It's a short trip -- it's probably not worth buying the tickets in advance and worrying about missing the train (yes, you would have to buy new tickets).
And yes, they will be able to sell you the return for the 20th at the station on the 16th.
Sep 4, 2012 5:35 AM
7Thank you once again, last question I promise, will the price for the tickets be the same at the station compared to if I buy them now online? In the UK buying tickets on the day even for short trips of 1.5 - 2 hours is often much more expensive compared to advance fare bought online.
It is unclear to me from the raileurope and tgveurope websites if the price available today online is the same as buying on the day or if it is a cheaper 'advance' fare only available online.
Also my French is poor, basic phrases only, if the person at Carcassonne does not speak some English I may struggle to ask for the specific train, time and date I want to return from Montpellier.
Sep 4, 2012 5:53 AM
8Given that the prices posted online today are about 25€, I don't think there will be much difference if you buy at the station on the day you arrive. It might be a few euros at most, so it really depends on whether you would rather pay a few euros and not have to worry about missing your train.
Carcassonne being one of the biggest tourist destinations in France (as well as a hub for Ryanair), I'm sure the person at the wicket will be able to speak some English. If in doubt, write down the hour of the train, the destination and the date and show it.
To give you peace of mind -- I just typed in for a ticket leaving tomorrow at 12:56 and the price is 24€10. So even cheaper!
Edited by: bjd to see the cost if buying a ticket immediately
Sep 4, 2012 10:46 AM
Sep 4, 2012 2:05 PM
Sep 4, 2012 2:46 PM
11To avois starting new topc for 1 simple question, are Tram Lines 3 and 4 in operation? I would quite like to go the beach on one day, we have no hire car and are staying in Antigone. Does tram 3 go all the way to Perols etang de lor and is this by the beach and a nice place to go with cafes and so on?
Sep 4, 2012 9:36 PM
In French, but a map...use arrows top left to expand, move around
Here's an article on beaches in the Languedoc, they don't think much of the Camon or Palavas, but they're reviewing some much better beaches also, so these suffer by comparison.
Back to a French site. from the menu at bottom select 'Arret-de-tram' and it will show you where the trams stops in relationship to other areas.
Line 3 service info
Overall info on Montpellier transport. Sorry, can't find an English section..but good for
If you can access Line 1, you might consider the suggestions at this link and take Line 1 to a bus which will take you to La Grande Motte which seems much better recommended.
You might enjoy reading a blog from an American writer (music & food) who has been living in Montpellier for some years. He's explored some of the off beat places and I enjoy reading about the everyday life (and info on the local markets and goings on:
Hope others have more personal experience with the beaches and have specific recommendations. Good luck!
Sep 4, 2012 11:10 PM
13Yes the tram lines 3 and 4 are in operation as of april this year. The line 3 takes you to l'etang d'or, but it isn't going to be good for swimming and beach side cafes. As soon as you get to the end of the line, you will see a orange bus 131 for 1,50eur and you can take that to Palavas-les-flots for the beachy seaside town with cafes etc. These buses are pretty much timed with the arrival of the tram and you will only be on it for about 15 minutes. There are also other buses that leave from there also going to Carnon beach. Here is the site for the buses
Sep 5, 2012 1:44 PM
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