Eurostar is advising all passengers not to travel through Paris today due to severe disruption caused by continuing strikes by French customs officers.
The operator had hoped that the work-to-rule protest by customs officers protesting additional Brexit checks could be resolved, but talks between officers and government officials last night broke down.
Five trains have been cancelled already and others have been delayed by more than four hours, with further disruption anticipated.
Euro-non-starter: Gare du Nord in Paris (pictured) is affected by ongoing disruption resulting from a continuing French customs officer work-to-rule protest
Passengers are being advised to avoid using Eurostar if at all possible, and to be patient if their travel plans can’t be altered.
‘We are advising all our customers not to travel with us. If this is not possible, please be extremely patient. Our teams are doing their best to help where/when needed,’ said the manager of Eurostar at Paris Gare du Nord, Lawrence on Twitter.
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The cancellations to date are: the 10:06 from Paris Nord to London St Pancras, the 15:03 from Paris Nord to Ebbsfleet International and London St Pancras, the 20:07 from Paris Nord to Ashford International and London St Pancras, the 21:03 from Paris Nord to Ebbsfleet International and London St Pancras and the 19:01 from London St Pancras to Paris Nord. More could follow.
Passengers can change their tickets to a future date, at no additional charge, or request a full refund.
The operator was apparently caught off guard by the continued disruption.
Eurostar staff had been optimistic that yesterday’s talks would resolve the dispute.
‘I do not have detailed information but I was informed that talks were apparently constructive. Hence my deception this morning when I’m greeted by customs still on strike,’ tweeted Lawrence.
Breakdown in talks: Passengers are being advised to avoid travelling through Paris by Eurostar as five trains are delayed, others are cancelled and crowds amass at stations
This image shows queues at London St Pancras International on Sunday night caused by striking customs officials on the other side of the Channel
On Sunday night Gavin Esler, the broadcaster and Kent University Chancellor, tweeted a video of hundreds of passengers standing in line at St Pancras International station.
He wrote: ‘Eurostar tonight – queue out of the door – anyone thinking of going on holiday after March 29 [and assuming the Brexit “sunlit uplands” continue] might find the same.
‘But hey, we can spend hours waiting for our flights, trains and ferries looking at our new blue passports.’
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