In the world of French train travel, two titans reign supreme: inOui and Ouigo. But what sets these two apart? Even though both brands are operated by SNCF, France’s national railway, they differ greatly in price and availability. Plus, since both brands appear in the SNCF Connect app and website searches, it can cause some confusion. Fear not, dear traveler, for we have ventured into the depths of train-related knowledge to bring you the ultimate guide on the differences between these two glorious rail experiences.
Cost and Pricing: A Tale of Two Wallets
When it comes to pricing, Ouigo is the undisputed champion of affordability. With fares starting as low as €10, Ouigo offers a budget-friendly option for those looking to save some euros. On the other hand, inOui boasts a more premium experience, with prices generally higher than Ouigo. However, inOui’s flexible pricing means you can snag some sweet deals if you book early or travel during off-peak hours.
Ticketing and Booking: The Early Bird Gets the Train
Both inOui and Ouigo offer online booking through SNCF Connect and Omio-France, but their booking windows differ significantly. Ouigo’s tickets can be booked up to 9 months in advance, while inOui allows bookings up to 4 months ahead of time. So if you’re an eager beaver who loves planning months in advance, Ouigo might just be your perfect match.
Luggage Allowance: To Carry or Not to Carry
InOui’s generous luggage policy allows passengers to bring two suitcases and one carry-on item free of charge. Ouigo, being the budget-friendly option, offers a more limited luggage allowance. You can bring one carry-on item and one suitcase, but if your suitcase exceeds 36x27x60 cm, you’ll need to pay an extra fee. So pack wisely, dear traveler!
Comfort and Availability: Riding in Style
When it comes to comfort, inOui takes the cake. With spacious seating, power outlets, and Wi-Fi, inOui ensures a luxurious journey. Ouigo, while still comfortable, offers a more basic experience with less legroom and no power outlets or Wi-Fi. Additionally, inOui trains are more frequent and available than Ouigo, making it easier to find a suitable travel time.
The Verdict: Choose Your Train Adventure
For short journeys of two hours or less, we love scoring deals on Ouigo trains. But for anything longer, we think the value, comfort and convenience of inOui trains far outweigh the price savings of Ouigo. But that’s us.
Ultimately, though, the choice between inOui and Ouigo boils down to your personal preferences and budget. If you’re all about saving money and don’t mind a simpler travel experience, Ouigo is the way to go. But if you’re willing to splurge a bit for added comfort and convenience, inOui is your ticket to a luxurious train journey. Go ahead and search on SNCF Connect or Omio-France and decide for yourself. Whichever you choose, bon voyage!