Trains to and from Lille Airport (LIL)
Lille is amongst the most important airports in France, and is found just outside of the city of Lille. Lille is the capital city of the Nord-Pas de Calais region of the country, and also the principle city of the Lille Métropole, while its airport is the twelfth busiest in France in terms of passenger traffic and the fourth busiest in terms of cargo movements. The airport is also known as the Lille-Lesquin Airport, due to its location in Lesquin, and is allocated the official IATA code of LIL. Although bus services are available, train services are only found in the city, at the two main railway stations. The airport has no train station on its grounds. However, the buses take passengers to the railway stations throughout the day, seven days a week.
The airport is well positioned just 7km, or 4 miles from Lille city centre, and is located in amongst a dense road network, with the A1 to Paris, the A27 and A22 leading into the country of Belgium, and the A25 heading towards the northern coast, and cities such as Dunkirk. The airport handles over a million passengers per year, and consists of three terminals, one for freight operations, another for private and business aviation and the third for passenger arrivals and departures, on scheduled domestic and international flights. Although there is no Lille Airport train station, local buses take passengers into the city, and to the two railway stations in Lille. The bus stop at the airport is found just across from the arrival hall.
The Lille Airport buses to the railway stations are available Monday to Friday, approximately every hour, from 05:30 to 22:15. The duration of the journey is approximately twenty minutes, and the buses are the most cost effective way to reach the Lille train stations. The buses drop passengers at the main entrance of the Euralille shopping centre. Euralille is one of the largest business districts in France. For passengers arriving at one of the two Lille train stations, buses provide transport to the airport as well, from the Euralille shopping centre. In this direction, buses travel approximately every hour, from 05:00 to 22:00, Monday to Friday. The bus stop is marked as the ‘Liaison Aéroport’. Over weekends, the bus is scheduled to arrive at the airport for each departure flight.
The Lille Train Stations
In Lille, there is a large variety of public transport options available to residents and visitors, by the underground metro train services, buses and the tramway lines. In total, there are about 68 urban bus routes which cover the metropolis, 8 of which travel into the country of Belgium, two tramway lines which provide a link to Tourcoing and to Roubaix, and two automated underground train (metro) lines which cover a distance of 45km. There are thirty-five stations on the tramway lines, and sixty on the metro lines.
The main railway station of Lille is known as the Lille-Flandres Station, and it is a terminus for SNCFIntercity and regional trains. It was opened in 1842, and was built by Léonce Reynaud and Sydney Dunnett. Its construction began in 1869, but was only completed by 1892. To the original design, a large clock and extra storey was added, as well as the Hôtel des Voyageurs and the rooftop. Lille-Flandres is on the Paris-Lille railway line, and many types of trains are available to a variety of destinations. Paris is an hour from Lille on the high-speed TGV trains, and London is an hour and twenty minutes from the city on Eurostar trains. Brussels is a quick thirty-eight minutes on the Thalys trains. There are about thirty trains per day to Paris. Trains also travel to the surrounding areas of Lille, and to other towns in Northern France.
Lille-Europe is the second major railway station in the city, and it is primarily used for high-speed Eurostar and TGV services. Some regional trains are also available. This station is much newer than the Lille-Flandres Station, as it was built in 1993, for through trains from Belgium, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. The station is used for connections for travellers from the United Kingdom, for popular destinations not served directly by Eurostar. They include Disneyland Paris, Charles de Gaulle Airport, Valence and Lyon. Further connections are then available to Avignon, Marseille, Montpellier and Perpignan, as well as many other cities. The two railway stations of Lille are just 500m apart by foot, and it is therefore very convenient to change between the stations. Buses stop in between the two stations. Further details regarding train services in France are available online, at http://www.sncf.fr. Eurostar’s website is found at http://www.eurostar.com.
Although no airport train station, passengers of the airport can easily connect to the railway services of the country, and travel by the popular TGV services, or on the regional trains to nearer destinations. The airport information desk can provide further details as well.