HI everyone, this is Xiaoying, the USWIB Liaison at HEC Paris. I wanted to make this next post about traveling out of Paris to the rest of Europe. Paris is located conveniently in a location that grants access to most of Europe in a quick plane ride. Some popular destinations among me and the other students include Italy, Belgium, UK, Spain, the Netherlands, Portugal, and more.
Paris has three international airports, Orly, CDG, and BVA. Orly is the closest airport to HEC and the easiest to get to. CDG requires the least amount of transfers on the train, but is on the other side of Paris compared to HEC. BVA is not officially located in Paris and requires the most time and money (you have to take a train to a certain station, then pay 16 euros for a bus to the airport). However, it is the airport that I once found a 30 euro round trip tickets to Pisa, Italy, so I suppose I shouldn’t complain too much.
Buses are also an option. You can get to nearby places via bus in hours, like to Brussels. If you’re comfortable sleeping on moving vehicles, overnight buses are also a great choice (I took an overnight bus to Amsterdam, but unfortunately, I didn’t sleep a wink). Buses are usually more affordable, and you don’t have to adhere to the limitations on liquids as opposed to airplanes.
I surprising fact I found about traveling within the European Union (except UK) is that you don’t have to go through customs when you arrive at your destinations. On bus rides, there isn’t even a physical barrier at the border. Airport officials barely glance at your passport when you check in. It almost as if you’re taking a domestic flight. Traveling to London was the only time I had to go through customs or received an official stamp on my passport.
That is the extent of my travel advice for the time being. I know that travel is on the mind of every study abroad student so I was very thankful that traveling from Paris was reasonably easy and affordable. If anyone has more questions, I’m happy to discuss further if you reach out.
Finally, I’d like to thank USWIB and all other lovely NYU people who reached out to me and other students in France after the horrendous incident in Paris on November 13. I was not in Paris at the time, but I was appreciative of the love and care I received.