France-London transport fares spike ahead of Queen Elizabeth’s funeral

Eurostar ticket prices have risen by more than 20%. SNCF and airline bookings are also up – despite an air traffic control strike planned for Friday

A photo of the screens at Piccadilly Circus in London lit up with a tribute to the late Queen Elizabeth II after her passing on September 8, 2022
London is preparing for the funeral of the late Queen Elizabeth II after her passing on September 8, 2022, with prices for transport to the English capital rising considerably
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The price of travel between France and London has risen by more than 20% for some passengers ahead of the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II, which is set to take place on Monday, September 19.

Train tickets have been particularly affected, as has the cost of hotels in the English capital.

One single Paris-London Eurostar train ticket on Saturday, September 17, or Sunday, September 18, is currently showing at €240. This is at least 20% higher than the usual cost of a last-minute seat.

A single journey from London to Paris the day after the funeral, on Tuesday, September 20, is showing at €224.

Eurostar said the price rise was due to a slight increase in demand due to the late monarch’s funeral.

The day after the announcement that Queen Elizabeth II had passed, the company tweeted a photo of the late monarch and her late husband the Duke of Edinburgh visiting the launch of the first-ever Eurostar train in May 1994.

French train company SNCF is reporting similar rises. Sales for journeys towards London from France have more than doubled in the days since the Queen’s death.

Flixbus, the main coach service provider between the countries, has also reported a 17% rise in bookings towards the UK between today (September 14) and Monday.

Demand for airline tickets has not risen quite as much, although prices for flights towards the UK have slightly increased in price.

The increased demand comes after French aviation authority la Direction générale de l'Aviation civile (DGAC) asked airlines to ground 50% of their scheduled flights on Friday, September 16, following a strike notice from an air traffic controller union.

The Syndicat national des contrôleurs du trafic aérien (SNCTA), which has been calling for pay rises for the last few months, in view of France’s high inflation rate.

It is also asking for a recruitment drive, as one third of current air traffic controllers are expected to retire between 2029 and 2035.

Read more: Strike action to ground one in every two flights in France on Friday

Hotel rooms in London have also spiked in price, with rates soaring by as much as three or four times for nights around the funeral date.

The price of souvenirs and trinkets related to Elizabeth II have also risen considerably due to heightened demand.

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