Eurostar direct ski services to The French Alps go on sale on 16 July for 2008-2009 winter season

3 Jul 2008

--First direct day service launches on 20 December 2008--First direct night train departs on 26 December 2008--Return fares start from just £179
Eurostar, the high speed train passenger train linking UK with the continent, will open ticket sales for its direct ski services from St Pancras International and Ashford International to the French Alps on Wednesday 16 July 2008. Return fares start from £179. Bookings can either be made online at www.eurostar.com or by calling 08705 186 186.
Eurostar's highly popular ski direct trains offer easy access to a variety of top ski destinations in the French Alps such as Courchevel, La Plagne, Tignes, Méribel, Les Arcs and allow advanced skiers, families or beginners to select a resort tailored to their needs.
Eurostar provides two direct services a week to Bourg St Maurice, both calling en route at Moûtiers and Aime-La-Plagne. The overnight service, leaving London St Pancras International, allows travellers an extra two days on the slopes. It is the ideal option for travellers living in towns and cities beyond London, who can buy through fares and use domestic trains to reach St Pancras International to connect with Eurostar high-speed trains, giving them the opportunity to be in the office until Friday lunchtime and still enjoy the slopes first thing on the Saturday morning. The day train provides a scenic option: travellers will enjoy being whisked through the changing French countryside until the magnificent panoramic scenery of the Alps unfolds.
For added convenience, an extra item of luggage - such as a pair of skis or a snowboard- on top of the normal luggage allowance can be taken on board the train at no extra cost. Eurostar stations are also located just a short bus ride from the resorts, avoiding the long transfer experienced when travelling by air and taking skiers straight to the slopes.
Taking Eurostar to the French Alps is not only a more enjoyable and relaxing way to travel, but it also is more environmentally friendly as all Eurostar journeys are now carbon neutral. Detailed independent research commissioned by Eurostar has shown that a passenger travelling on a return Eurostar journey from London to the French Alps generates 24 kilograms of CO2. In comparison a passenger on a typical London Heathrow-Geneva return flight generates 191 kilograms of CO2, while a typical round trip between Gatwick and Geneva generates 169 kilograms of CO2 per passenger.
Eurostar's Director of Communications Simon Montague commented: "These services are very popular year on year as our travellers greatly value the seamless travel and their arrival in the stations located high in the French Alps, close to their resorts. We are delighted that even more people from the UK regions will be able to benefit from these new through fares and discover a spectacular way to travel for their ski holidays, which allows them to significantly reduce the environmental impact of their journey and to reach their resorts refreshed and ready for the slopes."Return fares start from £179 in Standard Class. Travellers can indulge themselves on their way to and from the slopes by travelling Leisure Select class, enjoying roomier accommodation and meals and drinks served at their seat from just £269 return. Tickets are available from www.eurostar.com or by calling 08705 186 186. ***ENDS*** Notes to Editors: 1. Eurostar is the high-speed train service linking St Pancras International, Ebbsfleet International, Ashford International, Paris, Brussels, Lille, Calais, Disneyland Resort Paris, Avignon and the French Alps. 2. Eurostar now has through fares deals with First Great Western, National Express East Anglia, First Capital Connect, Virgin Trains, National Express East Coast, East Midlands Trains, London Midland, Chiltern Railways and Hull Trains. 3. Ebbsfleet International in north Kent is close to junction 2 of the M25 and Bluewater shopping centre, and lies at the heart of a catchment of 10 million people. It offers seven trains a day to Paris and five a day to Brussels, with ample parking and taxi and Avis car hire facilities. Eurostar travellers can also connect with the station for free on Southeastern train services and Fastrack buses. 4. Ashford International in Kent provides three services a day to Paris, a daily service to Disneyland Resort Paris and seasonal weekly services to the French Alps and Avignon. The station provides ample parking and connects with domestic rail services. 5. Independent research has shown that a Eurostar journey between London and Paris generates one-tenth of the carbon dioxide produced by an equivalent flight. Under its Tread Lightly initiative, Eurostar has set a target of further reducing its CO2 emissions by 25% per traveller journey by 2012. Eurostar is the world’s first train operator to make all journeys carbon neutral. 6. Eurostar and Friends of the Earth are working together in the UK on Eurostar’s Tread Lightly initiative and The Big Ask, Friends of the Earth’s climate campaign. To find out more about Friends of the Earth or The Big Ask please click here www.friendsoftheearth.co.uk 7. Eurostar is a founder member of Railteam, a partnership between Europe’s leading high-speed train operators that is developing simpler ways to book and travel on the fast-expanding, European high-speed rail network. 8. Eurostar and Eurotunnel are entirely separate companies. Eurostar operates high-speed passenger trains, while Eurotunnel operates a vehicle shuttle service and the Channel tunnel itself. Eurostar is Eurotunnel’s biggest customer. 9. To book through fares via Eurostar, or to find out more information, go to www.eurostar.com or call 08705 186 186. For more information:Eurostar Press Office+44 (0) 20 7843 5500press.office@eurostar.co.ukFor images please go to www.eurostarimagery.co.uk and register