Travellers whisk on new train from Munich to Paris
The first scheduled service on Sunday by France's TGV bullet trains from the German city of Munich to Paris whisked travellers there in two hours less than by old-fashioned express.
09 December 2007
Munich (dpa) - The first scheduled service on Sunday by France's TGV bullet trains from the German city of Munich to Paris whisked travellers there in two hours less than by old-fashioned express.
The crack train arrived 15 minutes late at 12.49 pm on its first run, French rail company SNCF said from Paris.
Leaving Munich once daily before dawn at 6.20 am, it has a scheduled running time of six and a quarter hours.
German partner Deutsche Bahn said the one-way fare was 129 euros.
Bahn said 500,000 people had so far used new high-speed services that began in summer between Germany and Paris in competition to air links.
French-built TGV trains operate between Paris and Stuttgart, with the newest extension travelling beyond Stuttgart to Munich, while a fleet of German-built ICE trains handles the run from Frankfurt to Paris.
The TGV guns up to 320 kilometres per hour between Paris and Baudrecourt, eastern France, but slows to a cruising speed of 250 kilometres per hour on the German tracks.
New services are introduced on the German railway system every six months when the timetables are renewed.
Bahn said the combined high-speed services to France had sold 55 per cent of seating capacity in their first six months.
"It's huge progress getting to Paris in just three hours 48 minutes," said Martin Schmidt, spokesman for an independent passengers' lobby, Pro Bahn, in Frankfurt. "It used to take more than five hours."