a VirtualTourist member
I'll be travelling by train from Bruxelles to Saarbrucken and from Saarbrucken to Paris and I want to know whether there is access for wheelchairs in order to get into the train station and the train itself. Bear in mind it is a power wheelchair, for what everything must be free-steps.
I need to know if those train stations are wheelchair friendly and also if every train which does that journey or just some of them in specific times of the day are. In case not all of them have access, please let me know.
Moreover, i would be glad if you could let me know if inside the train, every class is accesible, and if once there i have to request any special attention or instead the accesses are visible to the naked eye.
Thank you, Gabriela
Well, I can tell you that with a powered wheelchair not all trains will be accessible, and on those trains that are, not all parts of the train will be accessible. Building trains in such a way that a wheelchair can circulate freely through the whole train is just not practical.
I would suggest you contact the railways to help you. The can give you assistance. You will have to tell them how big and heavy your wheelchair is.
The Saarbrücken - Paris part is easiest, as there you have direct trains. You can call the German Railways' service hotline at +49 180 5 99 66 33 and they will make sure someone helps you on the train in Saarbrücken, and of it in Paris. See also:
From Brussel to Saarbrücken is a bit more complicated. The normal route is train to Luxemburg, and bus from there. But your wheelchair will be a problem. However you could go via Paris. Brussel - Paris is 1h25m, and Paris - Saarbrücken is 1h50m. You need to transfer from Paris Nord to Paris Est. Best call the Belgian railways for that at: +32 70 79 79 79. They will normally be able to organize assistance for your trip starting in Brussel.