Are the prices of Norman trains increasing with the new obligation to reserve?

SNCF travelers will have to change their habits. The Normandy Region and SNCF Normandy have decided to make reservations between Paris and Cherbourg, Caen, Le Havre, Granville or Deauville compulsory from July 1, 2022. User associations are sounding the alarm.

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We know that going on vacation is often a source of stress. Those who planned to reach Normandy by rail will have to be even more motivated than usual.

Since Easter, already, the disturbances have multiplied on the lines between Paris and our region: works will greatly increase the usual travel times this summer, up to an additional hour.

or even the elimination of 20 Norman trains per day since March 2022.

Ce 1is July, another piece of news arrives at the station: reservations are compulsory on all Krono+ lines in Normandy: Paris-Caen-Cherbourg, Paris-Deauville, Paris-Granville, Paris-Le Havre or even Paris-Cherbourg, without forgetting Paris-Dieppe the weekend. Without this reservation, no occasional traveler will be able to board these trains.

The Region and the SNCF advance the “comfort” argument to justify this measure. “This decision follows a strong demand from travelers to be able to take advantage of a seat on each of their journeys, providing more comfort and serenity to the trip, while guaranteeing a better distribution of travelers on all the trains offered. Normandy thus becomes the 1st region of France to implement work this device on regional trains.”

The SNCF specifies in passing that this reservation will be free. “There will be no price increase on these Krono and Krono+ trains from 1is July. In addition, travelers on these lines have access to low prices if they anticipate their purchase or benefit from regular promotional sales.

Only subscribers benefit from flexibility, with 3 options offered :

  • Dedicated cars on 23 trains per day.
  • The possibility of reserving a seat on board up to 42 days in advance.
  • Flexibility by allowing them to board any train, without reservation, but without guarantee of a seat.

No change, however, for inter-regional trains such as Rouen-Le Havre; booking remains optional for everyone.

These arguments obviously did not convince everyone. User associations have already reacted, even before the implementation of these measures, with a very clear message on social networks: “degraded conditions of access to trains, disguised price increases and contempt for subscribers, a whole program!”

The UDUPC (users of Paris Cherbourg) and the ADURN (users of Rouen Le Havre Paris) affirm that these compulsory reservations will have “a strong impact” on the flexibility of travel. “Previously, with Tempo tickets (open day tickets without reservation), even if the train is full, a traveler could still buy a “reasonable” ticket and get on the train. There was no guarantee of a seat, but in the event of an emergency or simply at the last minute, a traveler could hope to arrive at their destination.This will no longer be the case for the Krono+ lines.

In an emergency or simply at the last minute, a traveler could hope to arrive at their destination. This will no longer be the case for Krono+ lines.


These associations denounce in passing a disguised increase in prices. “The implementation of this compulsory reservation implies the end of the sale of Tempo tickets for journeys to and from Paris. These Tempo tickets, without a designated reservation, were sold at a lower price than Krono+ tickets with reservation when you Take it late. Indeed, the Normandy region applies the principle of “yield management” for the sale of these Krono+ tickets. The earlier you go, the more likely you are to get a lower price. when you buy a ticket at the last moment, the price explodes and becomes higher than the full price of a Tempo ticket. Not all users can plan their journeys 3 months in advance.

When you buy a ticket at the last moment, the price explodes and becomes higher than the full price of a Tempo ticket. Not all users can plan their journeys 3 months in advance.

And even these associations of users have not managed to find out much about the percentage of low-cost tickets sold. “Despite our request, the Normandy region and SNCF did not respond to us. We suspect that the share of tickets at low prices versus the share of tickets whose price changes over time is minimal! This new provision is, in our view, an increase disguised prices against which we rise up again!”

The deputy of Seine-Maritime, Hubert Wulfranc, sent a letter to Hervé MorinPresident of the Region to protest against this “degradation of the public rail passenger transport service” talking about “additional step towards the privatization of the public rail service by charging a sensibly acquired right, that of having a seat”.

The communist deputy takes the opportunity to recall the latest changes that have already taken place on the Normandy lines. “Each setback in the public rail service is now presented by the President of the Region as an opportunity for travelers to seize. Thus, the elimination of 20% of regional trains would make it possible to “rationalize” the offer, the elimination of stopover agents and controllers would improve passenger safety as well as the fight against fraud, the closure of physical reception areas would make it possible to develop digital reservations and, recently, the end of the possibility of buying a ticket with a non-reserved seat would improve the quality of the service provided…”

Perhaps it’s the opportunity they chose when the extra cost of petrol and diesel reached 40% which led them to tax Normandy train travelers a little more knowing that they will not have than the only choice to suffer.

Defense collective southern axes Normandy

Same alarm signal on the side of the collective defense axes south of Normandy, which recalls the current economic and ecological context. In this period when the purchasing power of the French suffers significant losses with the galloping inflation which affects in particular energy, housing and food, Mr Morin is giving a layer. After the closures of ticket offices and the cancellation of trains, with the creation of differentiated fares at a time when everything should be done to encourage citizens to take the train to deal with the climate emergency, the response of the President of the region Mr Morin by the voice of the director of the SNCF is to promise us a service which must normally be provided and guaranteed. What progress!

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