Trip Planning 2022: Information, advice and questions!

Craig

TS Administrator
The likelihood is they won't even ask for it, even the gov.uk website states you may be asked to complete one. But, since they cost nothing they're worth running through just to be on the safe side!
 

coastinginlife

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
For information we recently visited Europa-Park flying into Basel Airport and we didn't fill out the passenger locator forms as it states it's not required if your final destination isn't France. Hope this helps.
 

Rob

TS Team
Favourite Ride
Steel Vengeance
I completed nothing for my recent trip to France.

Sent from my SM-G991B using Tapatalk
Likewise. My understanding is that now we are on France’s green list, locator forms etc. are not required.

Admittedly we went via Eurotunnel but it felt no different to pre-Covid travel apart from the toilets being shut on the trains and being made to wear masks if you got out of your car on the train. No additional checks at all!
 

Burbs

TS Team
Favourite Ride
Untamed - Walibi Holland
The toilets still being shut is bonkers. Especially if you have a delay, like we did for nearly 2 hours last year whilst being stuck on the train, and having to have an argument with staff to open up the loos.
 

Rob

TS Team
Favourite Ride
Steel Vengeance
I can only assume it is so they don't have to clean them, as it is completely illogical!
 

evilcod

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Pirates of the Caribbean - Paris
Likewise. My understanding is that now we are on France’s green list, locator forms etc. are not required.

Admittedly we went via Eurotunnel but it felt no different to pre-Covid travel apart from the toilets being shut on the trains and being made to wear masks if you got out of your car on the train. No additional checks at all!
Worth noting that in the last few days France have dropped their laws relating to masks on public transport which presumably will carry across to Eurostar and EuroTunnel trains soon.
 

Matt N

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Mako (SeaWorld Orlando)
I wasn't sure if this warranted its own thread or not, but I was intrigued to know; for those who fly to Europa Park from Britain, what is your preferred air route?

I was only interested to know because on our recent trip, we flew from London Stansted to Baden-Baden with Ryanair. My mum said that these were the only direct flights available from the UK. However, I keep hearing people talking about flying into other airports in the surrounding area, and I'd be interested to know how you guys get to these from Britain. Do you change at a different airport midway through your journey? Do you use direct flights that I simply wasn't aware of? Or do you simply use the same route as we did on our recent visit?

Baden-Baden to Europa was an absolute doddle according to my dad (45 minutes or so along a straight motorway, and we were there!), but Stansted is quite a way from where I'm based (around 3 hours by car), so I was curious to know whether there's anything nearer to me that gets to Europa with equal convenience, just for future reference. Or if anywhere else other than Stansted flew near to Europa.

For some idea, Bristol, Cardiff and Birmingham airports are all reasonably close to me (within 2 hours' drive), and London Heathrow isn't overly far either (the nearest of the London airports by some distance, with a drive time of only a touch over 2 hours from my area).
 

AstroDan

TS Team
Favourite Ride
Steel Vengeance, Cedar Point
Basel airport is also accessible to Europa-Park - although Baden-Baden is probably the easiest and certainly the cheapest in terms of connections.

There was formerly a Ryanair service to Strasbourg but this has been discontinued. Stuttgart is also an option, although takes longer (but prices are cheap).

Eurostar is also an option, changing in Paris - although this is probably more for your seasoned traveller.

Read the first post in this topic for a fuller picture, although some info is out of date.
 

venny

TS Member
Basel’s our go to. Car hire from the French side is always easy and the drive is pretty short and simple. We had to go via Frankfurt last year and the size of the airport, the distance and congestion on the roads made us appreciate Basel for its simplicity. That said, Frankfurt is doable and generally has a better section of flights available.
 

Poisson

TS Member
Favourite Ride
The Giant Squid
We did Frankfurt for the Holiday Park trip on the return leg. It's a 2.5 hour blast down the autobahn to EP, faster if you get a decent hire car (140 KMh limited Juke was a bit slow)
 

Jonathan

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Helix <3
I've flown into Basel, Strasbourg, and Stuttgart for trips to/from EP. All have been fine. Also done one or two car trips, though my favourite way to travel by far is the train - which I guess won't surprise anybody. :p Part of the reasoning for this may be sentimentality, owing to the fact my first trip to EP was by Eurostar & TGV, along with the local trains from Strasbourg to Ringsheim via Offenburg. Fully recommend taking the train at some point if you fancy it.
 

Craig

TS Administrator
If I'm flying, it tends to be whatever is the best value for me in terms of overall cost and convenience in relation to what I'm going to do on the trip. Over the years I've done all of the below at one point or another:
  • Basel - Good if you want to fly from somewhere other than London as there's flights from Bristol, Manchester and Edinburgh too. You can comfortably get from Basel to Ringsheim in just shy of two hours on public transport. Car hire is a possibility, however prices have sky rocketed since Covid, so along with fuel it might only be sensible if you're travelling in a group.
  • Baden Baden - Good for location in relation to the park and the flights are the some of the cheapest you can get. Downside is that you're limited to Stansted and aside from Fridays there's only one flight per day. The flight times can also be a bit of a pain depending on which day you travel.
  • Stuttgart - Flights are from Heathrow via Eurowings and BA, car parking can be very expensive at Heathrow though. Car hire is available, public transport can be a bit of a faff and take 2.5-3 hours though.
  • Frankfurt - Sometimes overlooked due to distance from the park, but it's the absolute best for flight options with around 70 flights a day heading over from the UK at different times throughout the day and probably my preferred airport. The number of flights means prices can often be pretty decent. Public transport is a long stretch at about 2.5 hours, but can be done on as little as two trains. Car hire pre Covid used to be absolutely dirt cheap at Frankfurt, so was a great option if you were in a group doing other parks, or things like Hassenhorn Rodelbahn. As Venny said, beware of traffic heading from Frankfurt to Rust though, if you get caught in queues off the back of an accident/roadworks it can sometimes be an absolute nightmare!
So consider your flight time/prices, car hire (and fuel!), transport to the airport, car parking, what else you're aiming to do and finally how quickly you want to get there then make a decision from that.

Eurostar is a really fun option if you can get a good price. It's something I'm doing for my trip in August thanks to some £39 tickets, and although I wouldn't perhaps do it for my first trip, it's not as difficult as you think.

As an aside, now that we're back to travelling to EP on the regular, we're working on re-doing the Europa-Park guide in the coming weeks, so we'll be able to cover a lot of this in more detail :)
 
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Craig

TS Administrator
Yup the €9 is an absolute bargain, the bahn.de website and app has been updated to suggest these fares when you're trip planning and you can pre purchase it now ready for your trip, and the ticket just sits in your app - just make sure you choose the correct month for your trip!

As @IDB mentioned, intercity services are excluded, so although it's cheap it can considerably lengthen your journey from some of the airports that's been mentioned (Frankfurt for example would be over double the time on non ICE services!). However for things like Baden Baden airport where you're taking local transport anyway, you can save with the monthly pass even though the standard tickets are pretty cheap in the first place at about €7 each way.

If you want to easily see what trains are valid and get an idea of journey times, you can narrow your search to exclude Intercity trains:

In the DB Navigator phone app

Just under the date and departure time in the search box, tap where it says 2nd Class. Tap options an then means of transport. Tap the switch for "Regional Transport Only" and click Done.

On Bahn.de

Click the further options button, then click types of transport. Select the tickbox for "only local transport" and continue your search.

If you're planning to travel from Strasbourg, don't forget this isn't a direct replacement for the Europass 24h as it only covers travel within Germany. However @AstroDan and I were discussing the other day, and he reminded me the Strasbourg tram (line D) now goes to Kehl. So a possibility is to pay €1.70 for a single trip in the CTS app to Kehl and then switch to the train and utilise your €9 ticket for the remainder of your transport in Germany, including your bus to EP.

Considering buying 2 x Europass 24h family to get you there and back from EP would cost you €29 for two people, using this monthly pass and paying for the tram to/from Kehl would cost €24.80 in total for two. A small saving, but if you're throwing in visiting a city, then you've also saved yourself a travel card or two as well as it'll also cover the buses U Bahn, trams and S Bahn in major cities.
 

Ellie G

TS Member
Hi, planning to visit EP early April 2023 but wondering when they will announce the 2023 season dates and when we can book, anyone know when this usually is please? Thanks
 

Rob

TS Team
Favourite Ride
Steel Vengeance
I think we are quite a way off them announcing 2023 season dates. I see that Easter next year is around the weekend of 8/9 April, so I would expect the park to open from 1st April at the very latest, with perhaps the 25th March being more likely. Are you planning on staying in the Resort hotels? I think bookings for 2022 opened up sometime in November 2021, I am unsure if this is typical of when bookings open or whether it was later than usual due to Covid.
 

Ellie G

TS Member
I think we are quite a way off them announcing 2023 season dates. I see that Easter next year is around the weekend of 8/9 April, so I would expect the park to open from 1st April at the very latest, with perhaps the 25th March being more likely. Are you planning on staying in the Resort hotels? I think bookings for 2022 opened up sometime in November 2021, I am unsure if this is typical of when bookings open or whether it was later than usual due to Covid.
Thanks Rob that's good to know. Just wondering whether to book flights (also too early) or hotel / park first. Our (Leeds, rather than rest of England) school Easter hols start the week before any of Germany/France / Switzerland so a small part of me was worrying the park wouldn't actually be open that first week in April but I can see this year it opened end of March so hopefully we'll be ok going then.

Haven't decided where to stay yet, lots more research to do! I just know my kids are finally tall enough for all the rides so it's time to enjoy it all fully and I can't wait!!!
 

Rob

TS Team
Favourite Ride
Steel Vengeance
I'm pretty certain the park will be open the first week of April, so you should be fine.

It's definitely worth checking out some of the guest houses in Rust if you're not going to be staying on Resort. Booking.com is the best place to look, and there are so many lovely ones in the town.
 
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