Wednesday 28 September 2016

Ireland v France: How can I get to Sunday's game in Lyon?

Euro 2016 Travel Guide

Published 23/06/2016 | 10:50

Ireland and Italy fans in full voice in Lille's Stade Pierre, and soaking up the atmosphere around the town before the game. Photo: Mark Condren
Ireland and Italy fans in full voice in Lille's Stade Pierre, and soaking up the atmosphere around the town before the game. Photo: Mark Condren
Ireland's Robbie Brady greets his partner Kerrie Harris after the match.

Ireland have qualified for the knockout rounds of Euro 2016, and the scramble for travel is on. Here's your need-to-know.

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What's happening?

Ireland play France in Lyon at 2pm on Sunday, June 26.

For match ticket updates, read the latest from Independent.ie Sport here. The FAI are currently negotiating with UEFA, but no tickets are officially available.

LATEST: Ryanair has added 11 special flights from Dublin to Lyon. Details below.

Are packages available?

Club Travel (01 608-0030; clubtravel.ie) has a daytrip including flights, tax and transfers from €739pp.

Killester Travel (01 833-6935; killestertravel.com) is hoping to announce packages.

Stein Travel (01 517-5990; steintravel.ie) is announcing a day trip and a two-night package from Saturday to Monday shortly.

Abbey Travel (01 804-7102; abbeytravel.ie), the FAI's official travel partner, had a daytrip from €739pp. This has now SOLD OUT.

Marathon Sports Travel (01 475-5010; marathonsportstravel.ie) had a daytrip to Lyon from €669pp including taxes. This has now SOLD OUT.

NB: Packages do not include match tickets.

What about flights?

LATEST: Ryanair has announced 11 special flights from Dublin to Lyon throughout Saturday, Sunday and Monday, July 25, 26 and 27.

Prices start from €332 one-way, with hand luggage only.

Otherwise, fans are going to have to get very creative for Sunday.

Direct flights with Aer Lingus from Dublin to Lyon and Montpellier have sold out before the game. Here are alternative options for travel to Lyon:

Dublin to Geneva (Aer Lingus): Geneva is a two-hour drive or train ride from Lyon; flights from €418.99 one-way on Friday. Return flights cost similar prices.

Dublin to Paris (Ryanair, Aer Lingus, CityJet, Air France): Paris is just two hours from Lyon by TGV, with lots of direct flights from Ireland. All are expensive at the moment, with Ryanair from €256 on Sunday morning one of the weekend's cheapest options. CityJet has flights back from €200 on Monday.

Dublin to Basel (Ryanair): Flights on Saturday start from €319. Basel is a four-hour drive or train ride from Lyon, with train tickets from c. €82 on traincaptain.com.

Dublin to Nice (Ryanair & Aer Lingus): Over four hours by car or train from Lyon, prices on Saturday are coming in at around €323 each-way.

Dublin to Montpelier & Toulouse (Aer Lingus): These are sold out before the game. However, Aer Lingus has flights home from Lyon to Dublin from €458.99 on Monday and Tuesday, while its flights from Montpellier and Toulouse to Dublin cost €152.99 and €141.99 respectively.

Indirect flights: One or two-stop connections are available to Lyons through Birmingham, Madrid, Frankfurt, Zurich and Barcelona. Marseilles via Madrid with Iberia is coming in at €260 on Saturday, for example. See skyscanner.ie, kayak.ie or skiplagged.com for options.

Barcelona (6 hours) and Carcassone (4.5 hours) are other fly-drive/train options. Flights from Poitiers to Dublin on Monday are also available from around €62.

NB: For Irish soccer fans already in France, flight change fees start from around €40 online, but are subject to availability.

What about travelling by train?

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Eurostar (eurostar.com) operates direct and indirect trains from London to Lyon, with prices from £159.50/€207pp on Saturday, June 25, as we publish. Journey times are 4h 41m (direct) and 5hr 38m (indirect, with one change in Paris Gare Du Nord).

Trains are the best way to travel between major French cities, with a two-hour TGV trip from Paris to Lyon on Sunday morning (07.53am) priced from €54 on captaintrain.com. See Paris flights above.

The main rail website in France is voyages-sncf.com, but captaintrain.com is easier to use, and prices are exactly the same.

There's a great explainer on French rail travel on seat61.com here.

See You Boys In Green (ybig.ie) forums for more fans' tips.

What about travel by Ferry?

Stena Line (stenaline.ie/euro2016) has a direct sailing from Rosslare to Cherbourg from €433 one-way, based on a car with four passengers (excluding seats or cabins), departing 8.30pm Thursday. Alternatively, it has indirect sailings via Britain from €148 for a car plus driver.

Irish Ferries (irishferries.com) has sailings from Rosslare and Dublin Port.

Note that Cherbourg is a 7.5 hour drive from Lyon.

Any accommodation tips?

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Hotel prices in Lyon are likely to skyrocket around the crunch fixture date.

Euro 2016 fans should look to campsites, Airbnb (airbnb.ie), Irish-run website homestay.com, friends and relatives to save on accommodation costs.

Going to press, Airbnb.ie had rooms from around €33pp, while hotel rooms were available from around €110 per night. These will rise fast, however.

Hotel search sites like booking.com, hotels.com, trivago.ie and hotelscombined.ie are a good way to compare prices across a range of properties.

Camping options include Indigo (camping-indigo.com) on the outskirts of Lyon from €22 per night, and about 40 minutes out, Camping Le Nid Du Parc (lenidduparc.com) from €18pp.

NB: All prices subject to availability/change.

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