Planning a trip to Brest is like making one to hell ;-)


I am trying to find out what options I have for getting to Brest. It seems impossible.

In principle, I see two options since driving 14 hours is not on my wishlist:

  • take a TGV from Stuttgart to Brest, which sounds easy because Stuttgart is a TGV station with bi-hourly connections to Paris
  • Fly

I like travelling by train, and I once took a Thalys from Brussels to Paris which was a really pleasant journey. Unfortunately, it seems impossible to find connections and/or prices on the TGV websites.

If I visit Deutsche Bahn, they can tell me about the connections, but they don’t tell my a price, since it’s a journey to a foreign country. The TGV-Europe website is a complete unusable mess, not only in non-IE browsers. It’s full of errors and the best result I can get is an http 404 (The requested URL /de/zug-fahrkarte was not found on this server.).

I’m glad to speak a little french, so I tried using http://www.voyages-sncf.com which redirects me to the above-mentioned site as soon as I admit to live in Germany. So the 404 problem persists. If I pretend to live in France, this site won’t sell me a ticket. At least I know now not only about the connections, but also some possible prices. Which I’m not able to pay, since they won’t accept my credit card😉 And, of course, maybe there is some extra fee for buying tickets from Germany.

I don’t really like the idea of flying, espacially because I’ll have to change planes. Seems like Brest has no direct connection to any German Airport or anywhere near Stuttgart, so hopping into an ICE train and flying from Frankfurt or Zurichis not an option.Most of the flights are therefore 9 hours and longer and some of them take me to Lyon to change flights (I like Lyon, it’s beautiful, just about the opposite direction).

Oh my, maybe I’ll take another look in a few days…

Who’d have thought that  Brittany is so damn far away?

[Update] There also is TGV.com, but this also redirects to the above-mentioned site

4 thoughts on “Planning a trip to Brest is like making one to hell ;-)

  1. Loic,

    thank you for this information.
    I think my biggest concern was the frustration about the tgv-europe.com site which still doesn’t work. I know I can fly and I can take the TGV and I could find the connections but I cannot currently buy tickets online.

    I had found most of the flights you found, but the site you linked to drew my attention to some interesting detail: many of the flights via paris require you to get from CDG to ORY or vice versa to change flights.

    I guess that’s not a big issue. How long does a metro ride from one airport to the other take?

  2. Joachim,

    I do not understand the problem.
    Brest airport (code: BES) supports international flights (rayanair, …) and french connections (paris, lyon, …).
    Brest-Rennes-Roissy CDG-Lille can be done using TGV, with one connecting train (Rennes) but it’s just a 5 minutes stop with no need for a platform-to-platform move.

    We had a look for your trip. These is no issue in finding a fight (no direct connection from germany).

    Regards,

    Loic

    http://www.edreams.de

    For example:

    347,49 € Preisstruktur
    Preis pro Person H/R (Steuern enthalten)*
    1 Passagier
    HINFLUGFreitag 28 August 2009
    Stuttgart (Echter… 13:05 Brest (Guipavas) Frankreich 16:45 Air France Economy 1 Zwischenstopps
    RÜCKFLUGFreitag 4 September 2009
    Brest (Guipavas) 06:20 Stuttgart (Echter… Deutschland 14:05 Air France Economy 1 Zwischenstopps
    Brest (Guipavas) 06:30 Stuttgart (Echter… Deutschland 11:15 Air France Economy 1 Zwischenstopps
    Brest (Guipavas) 06:30 Stuttgart (Echter… Deutschland 14:05 Air France Economy 1 Zwischenstopps
    Brest (Guipavas) 09:15 Stuttgart (Echter… Deutschland 17:10 Air France Economy 1 Zwischenstopps
    Brest (Guipavas) 11:30 Stuttgart (Echter… Deutschland 17:10 Air France Economy 1 Zwischenstopps
    Brest (Guipavas) 11:30 Stuttgart (Echter… Deutschland 20:15 Air France Economy 1 Zwischenstopps
    Brest (Guipavas) 13:50 Stuttgart (Echter… Deutschland 20:15 Air France Economy 1 Zwischenstopps
    Brest (Guipavas) 14:10 Stuttgart (Echter… Deutschland 20:15 Air France Economy 1 Zwischenstopps

  3. Damien,

    thanks for trying. I guess that is from the french website, where I also found connections. That site won’t sell me the ticket to Germany, unfortunately. I guess they charge an extra fee for tickets sold outside france (which is alright with me).

    I’ve also seen that the prices are really not bad, and they even offer some cheap 1st class seats, sometimes cheaper than 2nd class, but without the ability top return the tickets – which I don’t plan to do anyways😉

    Today I re-checked on TGV-Europe and the 404 Error was gone. It offered me some connections, but when I wanted to purchase a ticket, it told me there’s no available train matching my search – which was its own search.

    Seems I’ll have to check at some travel agency and spend a handful of extra euros for the ticket purchase…

  4. Hi,

    it seems I managed to do it:

    Aller :

    12h54 STUTTGART HBF

    16h37 PARIS EST
    TGV 09574 Service Handicapé Voiture bar Transport de vélo payant Réservation dans le sens de la marche possible 1e classe Samedi 29 Août

    18h05 PARIS MONTPARNASSE 1 ET 2

    22h36 BREST
    TGV 08653 Service Handicapé Voiture bar 1e classe

    * 1e Passager (26 à 59 ans)
    * Assurance

    MINI : Billet non échangeable, non remboursable.
    * Voiture 12 – Place 41 Place isolée – Solo

    * 1e Passager (26 à 59 ans)
    * Assurance

    TGV Prem’s : Billet non échangeable, non remboursable.
    * Voiture 3 – Place 14 Place isolée – Duo vis à vis

    Retour :

    08h44 BREST

    13h25 PARIS MONTPARNASSE 1 ET 2
    TGV 08622 Service Handicapé Voiture bar 1e classe Samedi 05 Septembre

    15h24 PARIS EST

    19h03 STUTTGART HBF
    TGV 09575 Service Handicapé Voiture bar Transport de vélo payant 1e classe

    Price: 323.80 €

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