Q & A – How To Find Your Train Information in France?

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Can you please advise on the best way to find out the situation with our upcoming rail travel. We are due to catch a train leaving Paris in a few days but there may be a labor dispute on the train system.

"How do I find out if my train will be operating? I thought I might visit the main train station a couple of days before to see if anyone can help.
Thank you!"
– Mark, USA

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We Answer – You Can Find Updated Schedules On Line

Dear Mark,
We're sorry that a rail strike may affect your travel in France. But going to a gare is probably not the best way to get updated information… and it's certainly not the easiest! Many travelers are going to be standing in long lines at the information booths there. Luckily, computers and mobile devices make it much simpler to find the latest schedules of train departures in France.

Gare de Lyon, photo by Mark Craft

How to find out about your train

Let's start with some links to SNCF, the company that operates the trains in France.

That last page has a link, "Get Traffic Updates", that we didn't find useful. But, the link we've included to searching for train status by train number seems to return useful information. Elsewhere on their site SCNF states that their updated info will be accurate. At least that's what we think they meant when they said (in December, 2019) —

Dès vendredi 13 décembre, la circulation des TGV et des Intercités visibles sur nos différents canaux d'information est garantie pour des voyages jusqu'au mercredi 18 décembre inclus.

However, they also state that they are unable to post until the afternoon of the previous day the next day's schedule info, and that info seems to be most readily available by using the train number link above.

The Mobile Source for Updated Train Information in France

Assistant SNCF

The SCNF mobile app, Assistant SNCF, has some useful information. It's also a place you can store your e-tickets. On the app, if you go to "Journeys" (on the bottom menu) , "Search for a journey", and then touch "Search by train number" you can find the same info as at the train number link above.

We hope this helps. Good luck, bon voyage, happy holidays,

Diane & Mark

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