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Old August 25th, 2012, 12:33 PM   #541
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
Is there even a case for a Madrid-Geneva train? How long will it take?
Nobody except for rail fans and people who fear flying would travel from Madrid to Geneva when there are very cheap flights between the two cities, both of them hosting two important international airport. But as you already know the train advantage over the plane is the intermediate stops.

Anyway I'm waiting for this line to open to be able to do Genčve-Barcelona on a fast train like today's Genčve-Paris... no more plane for me!
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Old August 25th, 2012, 01:13 PM   #542
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Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
Paris-Madrid seems to be too far for a regular traffic even with a very fast train. Barcelona-Marseille and Barcelona-Lyon is a proper "train territory". Maybe Paris-Barcelona, but at ca 5 h (1,100 km) it would also be pushing it to the limits...
Barcelona-Paris in 5 h won't happen for a long time, when Barcelona - Figueras open it will take over 6 h to Paris.
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Old August 25th, 2012, 01:40 PM   #543
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Barcelona-Paris in 5 h won't happen for a long time, when Barcelona - Figueras open it will take over 6 h to Paris.
I know, 5 h is the best that route can hope for given the distance and current long term plans.

On the other hand Barcelona-Marseille is only 500 km and even with just a partial HSR it ought to be possible to cover it in 3 h (170 km/h average) or less. That's exactly the distance and time shared by most successful HSR lines.
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Old August 25th, 2012, 05:18 PM   #544
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I wonder if there is a market for London - Barcelona, even at ~7.5 hours? After all there are intercity services in the UK of this length.

The London - Barcelona air market was 1.7 million last year and pretty consistent across the year too.

Even assuming only 10% market share, that is roughly 500 people a day (in addition to possible cabotage). I expect most of this air market is concentrated around long weekends, so Friday and Sunday/Monday trains might be particularly viable.


A possible stopping pattern might be London - Paris CdG - Lyon - Montpellier - Barcelona, as those stops have reasonable air traffic too.

Last edited by 33Hz; August 25th, 2012 at 05:34 PM.
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Old August 25th, 2012, 05:35 PM   #545
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There is some limited market even for very long services. There are some advantages a train has besides travel time (no restrictions on baggage, for example), but it will be difficult to make money on them because business passengers are unlikely to use anything longer than ca 4h. Of course the point about intermediate stations is still valid.
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Old August 25th, 2012, 06:08 PM   #546
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Originally Posted by gincan View Post
Barcelona-Paris in 5 h won't happen for a long time, when Barcelona - Figueras open it will take over 6 h to Paris.
Even at 6 hours I think there will be a demand for Barcelona-Paris. I took the train many years ago from Barcelona to Madrid, a journey then of over 7 hours. Still plenty of passengers on the train, but many were getting on/off half way.
Incidentally Renfe now offer a service from Barcelona to Malaga - takes over 5 hours but high speed rail all the way.
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Old August 25th, 2012, 09:05 PM   #547
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vaud

Nobody except for rail fans and people who fear flying would travel from Madrid to Geneva when there are very cheap flights between the two cities, both of them hosting two important international airport. But as you already know the train advantage over the plane is the intermediate stops.

Anyway I'm waiting for this line to open to be able to do Genčve-Barcelona on a fast train like today's Genčve-Paris... no more plane for me!
There used to be a Geneve - Barcelona Talgo. It was replaced with a Geneve - Montpelier TGV that gave a cross platform connection to aTalgo in Montpelier.
And yes there is a market for such a service. Of course you won't get the business travel market with that, but as a train can serve multiple destinations that is not needed. A lot of people are not in a hurry anyway, and given how air travel is becoming progressively more disagreeable even day long long distance trains have a market.

A Geneve - Barcelona - Madrid train will see me on it.

What also might have some success are seasonal trains to points south of Barcelona. People take the TGV from Brussel to Nice, so why not Geneve - Alacant with stops al along the Costa...
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Old August 25th, 2012, 10:34 PM   #548
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Originally Posted by K_ View Post
What also might have some success are seasonal trains to points south of Barcelona. People take the TGV from Brussel to Nice, so why not Geneve - Alacant with stops al along the Costa...
Because it would take much longer...
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Old August 26th, 2012, 02:20 AM   #549
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Originally Posted by Patryk View Post
How many pairs of trains will be direct between Paris-Barcelona/Madrid and Geneva-Madrid?
Not many in the beginning.
It will be a progressive thing, not a big bang scenario.

You have to bear in mind that the gauge problem has kept people from travelling by train to (and from) Spain for many, many years. So only Paris-Barcelona, Paris-Madrid, and Geneva-Barcelona are previously existing routes, all the others are new.

There has never ever existed any direct Barcelona-Toulouse nor Barcelona-Marseille train for instance, despite the reasonably short distance (the former) and not very long distance (the latter) between them. Ever. So we start from scratch in many of these routes.

Right now there are two TGV Paris-Figueras every day.
One TGV Geneva-Figueras might be added or not before the opening of the Barcelona-Figueras HSL.

Later, it might be two TGV Paris-Barcelona, plus one TGV Paris-Madrid, and one TGV Geneva-Madrid.

Later an AVE Barcelona-Toulouse/Marseille, plus an AVE Madrid-Marseille, plus another TGV Paris-Barcelona, and a train (still uncertain if it´ll be an AVE or a TGV) Barcelona-Lyon.

And then more trains will be added when and where needed.

Further targeted services are Nice, Bordeaux, and Lille.

You can obviously think about seasonal holidays, of course, at these times occupation might get to very high numbers (I mean per train, not yet number of trains).

This HSL service will nevertheless not be working at full pelt till some issues in the French HS network can be sorted out, such as the saturation on the Paris-Lyon line, and at Lyon-Part Dieu station in particular, or the lack of a HSL between Nimes and Perpignan, where trains will have to keep on using the old classic line.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
Is there even a case for a Madrid-Geneva train?
By putting together a Barcelona-Geneva train and a Montpellier-Madrid train, you can use better the intermediate stations.

Quote:
How long will it take?
About 8 hours.
But very few people will use it for the whole route. Some will though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
Paris-Madrid seems to be too far for a regular traffic even with a very fast train.
Same as above: You put together a Paris-Barcelona train and a Montpellier-Madrid train and you have it.

There are trains that have a longer route than that in terms of travel time.
And more importantly, at each end of the line are two of Europe´s bigger cities (Paris and Madrid), and another big one (Barcelona) is right in the middle, so the intermediate stops are going to be used for something, don´t you think so?

Quote:
Barcelona-Marseille and Barcelona-Lyon is a proper "train territory".
Yes, and we expect much of these two routes, especially the first, and also Barcelona-Toulouse.

Quote:
Maybe Paris-Barcelona, but at ca 5 h (1,100 km) it would also be pushing it to the limits...
No way. There´s plenty of TGVs with such long, or longer routes:

-Brussels-Perpignan
-Paris-Munich
-Barcelona-Seville
-Barcelona-Malaga
-Brussels-Nice
-Paris-Nice
-Paris-Pau-Lourdes-Tarbes

Paris-Nice is very well used, even if it isn´t competitive vs the plane.

Last edited by 437.001; August 26th, 2012 at 03:05 AM.
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Old August 26th, 2012, 02:23 AM   #550
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K_ View Post
A Geneve - Barcelona - Madrid train will see me on it.
Well, enjoy the trip.

Quote:
What also might have some success are seasonal trains to points south of Barcelona. People take the TGV from Brussel to Nice, so why not Geneve - Alacant with stops al along the Costa...
Geneva-Alicante will not be feasible at all for a number of years due to gauge difference.
You´ll have to change trains at Barcelona-Sants if the timetable allows it.
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Old August 26th, 2012, 02:53 AM   #551
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
I know, 5 h is the best that route can hope for given the distance and current long term plans.
The targeted definitive travel time is 4h30min, that is, once the whole HSL completed from Paris to Barcelona, thus including the now-missing stretch between Perpignan and Nimes.

Quote:
On the other hand Barcelona-Marseille is only 500 km and even with just a partial HSR it ought to be possible to cover it in 3 h (170 km/h average) or less. That's exactly the distance and time shared by most successful HSR lines.
The initial travel time from Barcelona to Marseille will be 3h45min.
3 hours is feasible if the missing link is built.
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Old August 26th, 2012, 02:56 AM   #552
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Originally Posted by 33Hz View Post
I wonder if there is a market for London - Barcelona, even at ~7.5 hours? After all there are intercity services in the UK of this length.

The London - Barcelona air market was 1.7 million last year and pretty consistent across the year too.

Even assuming only 10% market share, that is roughly 500 people a day (in addition to possible cabotage). I expect most of this air market is concentrated around long weekends, so Friday and Sunday/Monday trains might be particularly viable.


A possible stopping pattern might be London - Paris CdG - Lyon - Montpellier - Barcelona, as those stops have reasonable air traffic too.
A London-Barcelona train per day would be feasible, but only if Eurostar (or a given company) had trains adapted for both the Spanish and British systems.

That said, it would be perfectly feasible as there is now a London-Avignon Eurostar on summer weekends.
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Old August 26th, 2012, 03:32 AM   #553
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London Avignon is still less than half London-Madrid.

Seriously, I doubt there is a case for such service. Barcelona and London are both major air hubs.
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Old August 26th, 2012, 09:17 AM   #554
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night trains should be tried, it would be ideal for tourists:
for a hotel room's price, you get accommodations for a night AND you can end one day in Paris and start the next in Madrid..
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Old August 26th, 2012, 12:07 PM   #555
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist

Because it would take much longer...
So what. Not everybody is in a hurry. And I know quite a few people who rather spend 8 hours in a train then 15 minutes being humiliated at an airport.
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Old August 26th, 2012, 12:11 PM   #556
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Originally Posted by 437.001

Well, enjoy the trip.

Geneva-Alicante will not be feasible at all for a number of years due to gauge difference.
You´ll have to change trains at Barcelona-Sants if the timetable allows it.
That is wat Renfe has gauge changing trains for.
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Old August 26th, 2012, 02:01 PM   #557
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Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
London Avignon is still less than half London-Madrid.
Where did YOU read London-Madrid? Because clearly, I didn´t write anything about such a service.

Quote:
Seriously, I doubt there is a case for such service. Barcelona and London are both major air hubs.
If there is room for a London-Avignon on summer weekends, there should be room for a daily London-Barcelona. I find it obvious given the size of both cities. It is more of a technical issue (equipment of trains) than anything else.
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Old August 26th, 2012, 02:07 PM   #558
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That is wat Renfe has gauge changing trains for.
Yes, but not Alstom´s!!
The Alvia 120 is CAF´s, and the Alvia 130, and the hybrid Alvia 730 are Talgo/Bombardier´s.

AVE 100 will be used for these services because they will be easily homologated in France, as they´re TGVs, and only need minor upgrade to travel in France. No other scenario has been thought about as it would be rather more expensive anyway, to both Spain and France.

And more importantly, there is no link between the HSL Barcelona-Madrid and the classic line in Barcelona. A branch line is being built in Tarragona that will link the Barcelona-Madrid HSL and the Barcelona-Valencia classic line, but they take these works veeeeeeery easy (they started 15 years ago!).

And there´s no gauge-change facility in Barcelona that could allow such thing to happen, nor is the construction of any of them planned.

And actually, a change at Barcelona-Sants is not a dangerous experience anyway.
Just change platforms and wait for a few minutes.

Last edited by 437.001; August 26th, 2012 at 02:15 PM.
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Old August 26th, 2012, 03:24 PM   #559
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Originally Posted by 437.001 View Post
A London-Barcelona train per day would be feasible, but only if Eurostar (or a given company) had trains adapted for both the Spanish and British systems.
The British end (HS1) is built to French standards, so nothing new is needed here [Channel Tunnel fire regulations aside]. What extra do they need for the Spanish HSL?
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Old August 26th, 2012, 04:57 PM   #560
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The British end (HS1) is built to French standards, so nothing new is needed here [Channel Tunnel fire regulations aside]. What extra do they need for the Spanish HSL?
ERTMS, and if possible, decent doors, as platforms in Spain are 68cm high.

In Figueras, when you enter the TGV, you have to be careful, because it´s downstairs.
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