Photo credit (banner): Géronimo Potier / SNCF

Frequently asked questions

Here you’ll find answers to the most common questions from SNCF customers across all communications channels. Topics include train service in France and beyond, booking and buying tickets, discount cards and passes, TGVmax and on-board services.

Want to know about Covid safety precautions, symptom-free declarations and special terms for exchanges and refunds?

Get all the answers here

 

Trains in France & beyond

Our interactive map has links to the TER site for every region in France. Use the link below to get all the information you need—traffic, upcoming departures, fares and more.

Learn more about TER

Use the link below to get live traffic updates for the Transilien and RER commuter lines in the Paris region. You can also plan your journey from door to door.

Learn more about Transilien

Learn about Navigo price and service levels, get your pass and manage it from your online account.

Learn more about Navigo passes

 

Plan your journey, browse the list of destinations and learn more about our fares, our services and our dedicated offers for business travellers.

Learn more about TGV INOUI

 

Explore our low-cost, high-speed rail offer and book your ticket.

Learn more about OUIGO

Get answers to all your OUIGO questions—luggage, booking tickets, group travel, pets, options, fares and more.

Go to the OUIGO FAQ page

 

Plan your journey, browse the list of destinations and learn more about our fares, our services, our leisure travel options and our dedicated offers for business travellers.

Learn more about Intercités

 

Plan your journey, learn the requirements for post-Brexit travel to the UK, explore our business travel offer, and discover new things to do during your stay in London.

Learn more about Eurostar

Plan your journey to Belgium, Germany or the Netherlands, explore Thalys destinations, and book your tickets.

Learn more about Thalys

Izy offers great deals on train travel between Paris and Brussels. Use the link below to plan your journey, and check timetables and service frequency.

Learn more about Izy

Our high-speed TGVs can take you to Brussels, Germany, Luxembourg, Italy and Spain.

Learn more about TGV travel outside France

 

Booking & buying

The passenger name on an e-ticket cannot be changed. Your e-ticket is non-transferable: it is issued in your name, and you must present identification when your ticket is checked. As a result, your e-ticket may not be used by anyone else.

No. Metro tickets can only be purchased at sales points in select stations.

Learn more

 

Trains become unavailable for booking when they are full. In this case, check the timetables for other options, or contact your travel agent to receive an alert if a seat opens up on the train you want.

To pay with a holiday voucher, you must visit an SNCF ticket window, an SNCF sales office or a travel agent.

Important: you cannot receive change when you pay with a voucher.

Go back to your travel agent’s website and enter the information you used for the original booking. You can also contact their order-tracking service.

If you bought your ticket through an SNCF sales channel, please visit an SNCF agent or sales office, or call 3635 from inside France (cost of a local call). From outside France, dial +33 1 84 94 36 35.

To buy a ticket for a pet after you’ve bought one for yourself, visit an SNCF ticket window or self-service machine. You can also contact our telephone support service 7 days a week, and provide your travel dates. Dial 3635 (no surcharge) in France, or +33 1 84 94 36 35 from outside France. Once connected, say “Billets”. For service in English, wait for the prompt “For this service in English, press #85”, and follow the instructions.

When you fill in the second passenger’s profile, tick the “Travel companion Carte Avantage” box.

The rate for tickets is 10%.

VAT on transport is not deductible.

If the train is full, you can book a ticket but you are not guaranteed a seat.

Reservations are required for TGV trains, and all passengers must have a ticket.

 

Avantage Famille is the only card that offers a 15% discount on our Junior & Cie service. That’s the only difference.

 

E-tickets are linked to your Voyageur card when you book. To add them afterwards, please call the Voyageur programme and speak with a telephone representative.

To print a receipt, please go back to the place where you bought your ticket—a station, an SNCF sales office, an authorized travel agent (brick-and-mortar or on line), or an app.

Your travel agent may be able to help you select the coach and seat you want. The booking system will try to place you as close as possible to your companion.

You can also speak with a telephone representative any day of the week. From inside France, dial 3635 (no surcharge). From outside France, call +33 1 84 94 36 35.

If you have the Assistant SNCF app, you can store your card on your smartphone or other device. Simply download the app, enter your card number and follow the instructions.

Learn more about the Assistant SNCF app

Learn more about digitizing your cards

Visit an SNCF sales office or call customer service. From inside France, dial 3635 between 07.00 and 22.00 (no surcharge). From outside France, call +33 1 84 94 36 35.

 

Next time you’re searching for a train, look at the very first page. In the Passengers section, click on Complete my profile, and you’ll see a number of options, such as age range, Season ticket and Loyalty card. Scroll down to the box marked “Promo code or voucher” and paste the code from your e-voucher into the box. When you begin your search, a small box will pop up to confirm that the amount will be deducted from your final payment.

SNCF passes & cards

Collect your card from the points of sale in an SNCF station, or download the SNCF app to store it electronically on your smartphone. 

When you buy your pass, you’ll immediately receive an email containing your card number. You can also collect your physical card immediately after purchase.

If you travel regularly

Avantage Jeune Card (ages 12-27): enjoy benefits on every journey with TGV INOUI and Intercités. You’ll save 30% on travel in France and other European countries, including Prem’s trains, and you’ll receive exclusive last-minute offers.

Avantage Senior Card (ages 60 and up): enjoy benefits on every journey with TGV INOUI and Intercités. You’ll save 30% on travel in France and other European countries, plus a 60% discount for up to 3 accompanying children. And you’ll receive exclusive last-minute offers.

Avantage Week-end Card (ages 27-59): enjoy benefits on every journey with TGV INOUI and Intercités. You’ll save 30% on travel in France and other European countries, including Prem’s trains, and you’ll receive exclusive last-minute offers.

Avantage Famille Card (ages 27-59): enjoy benefits on every journey with TGV INOUI and Intercités. You’ll save 30% on travel in France and other European countries, plus a 60% discount for up to 3 accompanying children. And you’ll receive exclusive last-minute offers.

Familles Nombreuses Card: If you’re a TGV INOUI, TER, INTERCITÉS or Transilien traveller with at least three children under 18, you can save up to 75% on tickets with the Familles Nombreuses card. Everyone in the family gets 30%-75% off our regular Loisir fare for TGV INOUI, TER and Intercités trains, plus 50% off tickets for the Transilien network in the Paris region. You can travel in 1st and 2nd class, and the processing fee for the whole family is just €19. This easy-to-use card gives you more freedom and is valid for 3 years.

Do you travel often?

Liberté card (for all frequent travellers): get guaranteed discounts all year long, and 100% flexible tickets. If you travel on business or make more than 4 return journeys a year, this is the card for you. You pay a single low fare, and you’ll save in both 1st and 2nd class. And with the Liberté card, tickets are 100% flexible.

TGVmax pass (ages 16-27): If you travel at least twice a year and your plans are flexible, TGVmax is for you. You can travel on TGV INOUI and Intercités trains with required booking as often as you like in off-peak periods. You can make up to 6 bookings in one go, tickets are free, and your pass is stored electronically on your smartphone.

SNCF Forfait pass: Do you take a train every day? Choose a Forfait pass—valid for a week, a month or a year. Tickets cost €1.50 or less, and you can book in advance.

Learn more about our cards and passes

SNCF Connect

Go to: https://moncompte.sncf.com/prehome

To log in, you’ll need a unique email address and your SNCF Connect user ID or rewards card number.

TGVmax

Before you contact customer service, check out our FAQs. The answer to your question is will almost certainly be there. If you have a specific question that is not covered by the FAQs page, you can send a request from the link below:

Contact customer service

You can also get in touch by telephone. Call +33 (0)9 80 98 01 76 between 09.00 and 19.00 any day of the week. From inside France, there’s no surcharge, and you pay the cost of a local call.

 

Log in to the OUI.sncf website.

When the page opens, go to the white TGVmax banner at the top of the page, and click on the grey “Mon espace MAX” button. A new page will open under the title, “Log in with your credentials”. Fill in your email address and the password for your TGVmax account, then click the “Log in” button.

Voilà! You’re connected to your TGVmax account.

If you’re using the mobile app, you can log out of your OUI.sncf account and enter all your information (TGVmax pass number, birthdate, etc.) or go directly to the OUI.sncf website.

The TGVmax pass is available only to travellers ages 16-27.

When you sign up for TGVmax, you commit to holding your pass for at least 3 months: you may not cancel it during this introductory period. With TGVmax, you can reserve free tickets for TGV and Intercités trains with required booking to any destination in France, starting 30 days before departure. During peak traffic periods, some trains are not open to TGVmax pass holders.

See available trains

With a TGVmax pass, you travel 2nd class, and booking opens 30 days before departure. More seats are added throughout the month, up to the day before departure. If you book a journey and do not cancel, you must take it. We will send SMS reminders two days and one day before departure: you must confirm or cancel your journey from your TGVmax account. If you do not respond by 17.00 on the day before departure, your journey will be cancelled.

You may have up to 6 TGVmax bookings at a time. Your account keeps a running tally, and as you make each journey, a new booking opens up. You are limited to one departure per city per day, and you must choose an exact departure time. You may not board any train without a ticket specifically for that train, and if you are late or change your mind, you must cancel your ticket before the train departs.

Once on board, you must present an original identity document.

Your TGVmax pass is issued in your name: it is personal and cannot be transferred to anyone else.

Please read the terms of sale for your TGVmax pass carefully to understand the cancellation process.

Download our General Terms & Conditions of Sale

Under these General Terms & Conditions, either the Payer or the Pass Holder (if different from the Payer) may cancel the Pass after three (3) months, counting from the sign-up date. To cancel, contact TGVmax customer service:

  • log in to the Pass Holder’s account, click on the “Contact us” link and choose the Cancellation (Résiliation) option in the contact form
  • go to the TGVmax area on an on-line vendor site or in the mobile app of an authorized distributor to which the Payer has access, and choose the Other (Autres) option

To cancel your card, you must file your request at least seven (7) days before the last day of the month.

Tickets

TER tickets are valid for 1 day, but the exact term of validity depends on the sales channel and the region of purchase. Follow the link below and choose your region to get all the information you need.

Learn more about TER tickets by region

Intercités tickets are valid for 7 days.

Learn more about Intercités tickets

 

There are two ways to print your e-ticket: from the email that you will receive after purchase, or from a self-service machine. 

 

Stations

TGV INOUI serves over 200 cities in France and other European countries. Use the link below to learn more and download our map of destinations.

Explore stations served by TGV INOUI

You can buy tickets at the operator’s points of sale.

Aboard your train

No seating plans are available at this time.

If you choose TGV INOUI, your 2nd-class coach will have power points. Our current TGV fleet contains trains from different generations, and only the most recent (or most recently refurbished) 2nd-class coaches have power outlets.

In the station: activate the WiFi function on your device and select the “SNCF gare-gratuit” network. Once your Internet browser has opened, you are automatically directed to the access portal. You can log on to the WiFi network from an email link or through Facebook Connect.

Aboard your train: There is no WiFi service in TER or OUIGO trainsets, but it is available aboard some Intercités and most TGVs. WiFi is included with our TGV INOUI service. To find out whether your train has WiFi access, check the information on your journey when you book.

OUIGO seating plans are not released.

There is no law preventing a minor from travelling alone, but when underage children travel unaccompanied, their parents continue to be responsible for them at all times. As a parent, it is up to you to decide whether your child is capable of travelling alone, given the inevitable uncertainties of rail travel, such as missed connections and incidents during the journey.

If there is an incident, for example, the conductor is required to place the child in the care of the authorities. Similarly, if the train arrives after the station has closed and you have not given SNCF advance authorization to organize lodging, we may have to contact the police.

When a child travels alone, there is always an element of risk. That’s why we offer Junior & Cie. With this SNCF service, you can place your child in the care of trained, experienced monitors. Junior & Cie is a paid option and is not required, but it provides a safe journey for your child—and peace of mind for you.

The biggest difference is that 1st-class coaches are quieter and have roomier seats. You also have the option of choosing a single seat that is separate from the other passengers. 

Aboard your TGV INOUI

When you choose TGV INOUI, there’s no limit on weight or number of bags, provided you're able to carry them yourself. We make luggage trolleys available near stations and platforms to assist you. Please be sure to tag your belongings in advance, and remember that your bags are your responsibility.

For the safety of all, please ensure that your luggage doesn’t block the movement of the other passengers and crew aboard your train. When you board, you’ll find a variety of storage areas, at the entrance to your compartment and inside each coach.

Bikes, skis and aquatic boards—such as surf-, wake- and paddle boards—are welcome aboard TGV INOUI trains, but they must be stored in a carrying case and stowed in the dedicated areas on your train. For bikes, case dimensions may not exceed 120 x 90 cm.

Learn more about luggage aboard your TGV INOUI train

Aboard your OUIGO train

The price of your ticket includes one of two luggage options:

  • 2 pieces of hand luggage up to 36 cm high x 27 cm wide x 15 cm deep
  • 1 piece of hand luggage (up to 36 cm high x 27 cm wide x 15 cm deep) and 1 carryon bag (up to 55 cm high x 35 cm wide x 25 cm deep)

These bags must be stowed beneath your seat. Pushchairs are also included in the price of your ticket, up to a limit of 2 pushchairs per booking and per journey.

Want to board with extra luggage or an unusually large item such as a bike, a kick scooter, skis or a musical instrument? Choose the Luggage (Bagage) option, and you can bring it along for just €5 per journey.

Important: if your item weighs more than 30 kg or measures more than 2 metres long, it will not be allowed on board.

Learn more about travelling with luggage on OUIGO

 

Aboard your Thalys train

Your Thalys ticket includes 1 piece of hand luggage and up to 2 bags that do not exceed 75 cm long x 53 cm wide x 70 cm high. There’s no limit on weight, but you must be able to carry your own luggage and stow it yourself in the dedicated areas aboard your Thalys train.

Learn more about travelling with luggage on Thalys

 

Aboard your Eurostar train

The price of your ticket includes 2 medium-sized pieces of luggage (up to 85 cm on the longest side) and 1 small piece of hand luggage. In Business Premier class, you can bring up to 3 pieces of luggage at no extra charge.

Prams and pushchairs are also welcome aboard. And you can bring your bike or musical instrument: it counts as one of your 2 pieces of medium-sized luggage, provided it travels in a carrying case that doesn’t exceed 85 cm in length. If your item is longer, you’ll need to use EuroDespatch, Eurostar’s registered luggage service. Be sure to choose this option when you buy your ticket.

Learn more about travelling with luggage on Eurostar

 

Delays

If you booked your journey end-to-end in a single record, the connection time you need is built in.

If your first train is late, the train manager will come through your coach to identify connecting passengers and organize the rest of your journey. 

If you missed your connection and would like to receive a refund for your tickets, please request your refund on line.

Request your refund

 

Customer service

The number for the Collection Centre is +33 (0)4 26 21 16 00.

There is no surcharge for your call, and the Centre is open from 09.00 to 18.00.

Phishing

Phishing is a form of online fraud. Scammers try to trick you into giving them personal data by posing as a legitimate contact. The aim is to steal your identity, your money and/or your data. They may target personal data such as the number, expiration date and security code of your credit card, the user ID and password for your email or online bank account, your social security number and more.

Fake email and SMS messages that seem to come from SNCF can be very deceptive, because they use our logos and colours. But there are tell-tale signs that give them away. Phishing messages usually have little to no personalization, because they’re generally sent to many people at once. They often contain spelling and grammatical mistakes, which you can spot by looking closely at the content. Lastly, scammers will usually try to tempt you with an extremely attractive offer, so be vigilant when an email promises a special offer or gift, contains an alert or claims to be urgent.