[Train Review] Eurostar London to Paris – Business Premier

My virgin Eurostar experience!

Their website says it all – it’s like pointy end of the train, with fast track immigration, lounge access, and 3-course meal with champagne on board. Why not.

Cost – Euro$373 = SGD$544 for a seat in their Business Premier cabin. GAH. At the time of booking, the Standard and Standard Premier were selling for at least half the price but hey, having a fast track gate, flexibility to cancel or amend, and an atas meal onboard – how can I miss this?

Check in experience – My train was departing at 12:31 and I was advised to head to check in about 1130am to be safe. But I wanted to check out the Business Premier Lounge so I skipped out at 11am after checking out of St Pancras. There was no line, and no actual check in as per se – you show and scan your e-ticket and then pretty much waved through everything including security. You also clear customs for both UK and France here so it feels pretty seamless to me.

Business Premier Lounge

Start your journey in style, relaxing with tasty treats, a wide selection of drinks and a range of magazines and newspapers in our exclusive Business Premier lounges. The Paris and London lounges have their own cocktail bars, where you can sip on something shaken or stirred by our expert mixologist before departure. Just don’t forget there’s a train to catch…

From official site

First, the logistics: your eligibility is checked by showing your e-ticket and you can stow yourself anywhere in this split level lounge. There will also be boarding calls made about 20mins prior, as well as display boards showing which gate to head to.

The first level is a smattering of table seats, high bar + chairs, reading materials, toilet, as well as the F&B which is replicated on each level. Understandably, this is also the more crowded of the floor due to its convenience for departure.

The upper floor is a lot quieter, nicer seats.

Food & Beverage wise, there is a handful of chips/nuts, breakfast remanent, and a smoothie bar which I assumed offers cocktails during later timings. Of course there is also have wines and a rather nice rose and sparkling on offer.

Boarding – the announcements were made exactly 20mins prior to boarding and soon I was on my way. There is no differentiated priority boarding so everyone was mashed up into a crowd which slowly meandered its way into the elevators to the tracks.

Seat – Coach 16 was literally at the pointy end and I realized I had only managed to take one uninspiring photo of the coach so here goes anyway.

Seat 42 was also a little uninspiring – and I realized that I had mistaken the image of a straight bar in the seat map for a privacy divider instead of the shared table it is. So upon boarding, I was shocked to know that I would be staring at a stranger’s face for the next 2hours+.

Anyways, the seat looks like a decent ride for the journey, with a nestled USB charging port on the right side of the armrest. The (shared) table also ended up to be sufficient for 2pax dining – though it was very awkward for strangers.

Food & Beverage -The Eurostar Business Premier’s page says this:

“From hearty breakfasts to indulgent three-course course meals for lunch and dinner, our Business Premier menus have been designed with Michelin-starred chef Raymond Blanc OBE. We’ll serve drinks throughout your journey and there’s a wide range of choices – from tea, coffee and soft drinks to beer and champagne. What better way to get set for the day ahead or just unwind on the home straight?”.

I was sold on ‘champagne’.

From official site

Meal service started with a trolley service offering drinks and snacks – and champagne it is for me of course.

The tray of offerings was then presented, with the choice of main slotted in after that. I had the cod and it was okay. The rest of whatever the rest is was also just passable to be honest.

Lavatories – they were decently sized and very clean so no issue on that surprisingly.

Service – minimal interactions so not much of an impression but the crew did go around asking if any refills of drinks are needed, alongside coffee and tea after the meal.

In Summary,

After checking off this experience, I actually do not feel paying for a Business Premier was worth it. It was nice and all but Standard Premier will do for the next time at half the price.

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