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Summer 2023 in Greece with a quick Paris detour – optimum itinerary?

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  • jpapadou

    Planning on taking the fam to Greece for summer 2023. Looking forward to using my RBC Executuve Club Visa vouchers which have piled up over Covid…
    My daughter really wants to go to Paris for 4 days on the way to Athens from Vancouver via LHR. So, my question to the collective intellect of the forum is this:
    Should I book YVR-LHR-CDG and then CDG-LHR-ATH or YVR-LHR-ATH with a 4 day “layover” in London and then a LHR-CDG-LHR leg? I’m curious to get opinions of the best way to do it.

    I’ve been running some mock flight itineraries and it appears to be the same Avios and cost wise, but the logistics/strategy of booking (355 days in advance) and also collecting luggage becomes a factor, etc.

    Thanks in advance for the opinions.

    SamG

    Book to CDG via London (with a stopover in London – not clear if you want to do that? If you do then maybe terminate in London and take the Eurostar to Paris) Then book your own seperate flight to Athens. Coming back book ATH-LHR-YVR

    The real Swiss Tony

    Two things to bear in mind.

    UK airports – and indeed many across Europe – are going to be a nightmare this summer. Reports of people taking close on an hour to get through fast track security at LHRT3 today. You want to minimise the number of connections you make and the number of airports you use.

    Secondly, you want to avoid flying long haul starting in London as that hits the taxes hard.

    What I would suggest is as follows…

    Fly YVR-LHR. Stay in London
    Eurostar to Paris
    Get a non stop flight Paris to Athens. It’s c. 3hrs so less than half the time it would take to route back via London. I believe Aegean is good in Y – GBP 70 per person – and you’ll be in the same seat as BA Club Europe, just without the middle seat free. Eurostar back to London just to then fly on to Athens seems like folly. I mean if you must, C class PAR-ATH is £200 nonstop.
    Fly ATH-LHR-YVR, but make sure you allow sufficient time for the connection in London.

    I have no idea how RBC vouchers work, but also bear in mind that award availability over the summer is supposedly non-existent.

    The real Swiss Tony

    Edited to add, I see this is for next summer, so hopefully the craziness will have abated somewhat.

    In which case, I’d suggest YVR-LHR-CDG, then take the train to London, have time there, then LHR-ATH, then ATH-LHR-YVR

    Once you take out the hassle and cost of getting to and from the airports, it will be difficult to argue against Eurostar. And again, don’t finish with LHR-YVR, as you’re on the hook for around £200 in passenger duty if in J or F. That vanishes if you start outside the UK (or in places like Inverness….)

    John

    Do you want to visit London, or just Paris?

    Can you do an “open jaw” YVR-LHR-CDG // ATH-LHR-YVR?

    If you are in London for less than 24 hours (and both the inbound and outbound flights are on the same ticket) there is no APD to pay.

    Book Aegean or Air France or a low cost carrier direct from Paris to Athens. If you must transit because there are no suitable directs, don’t go through the UK but somewhere in central Europe. Going through the UK will double your travel time and you will also need to go through security again in the UK, whereas it wouldn’t be required if transiting aanother Schengen country

    jpapadou

    Thanks to you all for the advice! Very helpful!!!

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