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Old Apr 17, 11, 5:39 pm   #16
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Jacoubowsky View Post
From what you're saying, we'd be better off staying at an airport hotel? Are there hotels more-or-less directly connected to the airport? The original plan had been to stay at the Ibis Midi which is directly across from the train station, which I figured would be a relatively-safe situation.
Personally, I do think it is a relatively safe situation, and did not mean to discourage you from staying downtown near the train station. Au contraire, that's exactly where I'd stay in your shoes. Rather, I just wanted to pass on a word of caution, to exercise the same vigilance you would in any other city, precisely because the area does otherwise look quite nice on the outside, and is in range of quite a number of nice hotels. Also, in my own case, I found the caution helpful, because the picturesque quaintness of the downtown area had lulled me into thinking of it as a small village, as opposed to a major metropolitan area.
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Old Apr 17, 11, 7:43 pm   #17
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZenFlyer View Post
Personally, I do think it is a relatively safe situation, and did not mean to discourage you from staying downtown near the train station. Au contraire, that's exactly where I'd stay in your shoes. Rather, I just wanted to pass on a word of caution, to exercise the same vigilance you would in any other city, precisely because the area does otherwise look quite nice on the outside, and is in range of quite a number of nice hotels. Also, in my own case, I found the caution helpful, because the picturesque quaintness of the downtown area had lulled me into thinking of it as a small village, as opposed to a major metropolitan area.
Thanks for the context; sounds perfect. I'm not easily intimidated anyway. We'll likely stay at the Ibis since it's so close to the train station and reasonably-priced (I've had pretty decent luck with Ibis & Accor hotels in general; when I'm following the Tour de France, I have no issue staying in the cookie-cutter eTaps, so obviously my needs are moderate at best).
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Originally Posted by Palal View Post
I would recommend to take the train from Paris, stay at a hotel near one of the train stations and then take the early-morning train to the Airport. The area around Midi is a bit dirty (maybe a bit more than the average amount of dirt in the city), but nothing too bad. I've stayed at the Ibis near the train station and it was perfectly fine. Be sure you get your tickets to the airport the day before so that you don't have to wait in line in the morning.

If you were to go with the flight+flight, the transfer is a pain. A lot of walking (much more than any of the combined transfers between train-hotel or train-train train-plane) and lots of escalators and/or stairs. If you can't thru-check luggage, then this will be a problem, because luggage can take up to an hour to show up and priority tags are not always enforced.

Security in the international terminal can take 15-20 mins if the lines are long. The lounge has some breakfast baked goodies and good coffee so you can save some time on that.
Fortunately I'm flying directly out of BRU, no connecting flight issues. And I'm going to feel more comfortable being 15-20 minutes away from the airport than 2 hours. Thanks for the advice. Ibis here I come!
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Originally Posted by BigBossman View Post
There is a nice Hotel across the street from baggage claim or check-in area (i can't remember which). I am not sure the name, but I was put up there overnight after an IRROP. You have to walk maybe 50 yards.

I transfer through Brussels and it is a nightmare going through security between 8-11am or so. The priority line works faster, but 1Ks cant even use it, only C/F pax can. Expect at least 45 -75 minutes during the morning rush.

If you are transferring in Brussels and arrive at B gates and need to go to B/T gates, then it is best to use the new security check point underground in the middle of the B arrival terminal. (The normal security check point is on the B departures level).

Make sure to buy lots of Neuhaus chocolate! It is by far the best I have ever had and is a good price at the duty free!
Thanks for the warning about the long security lines at that time of day. One more reason to not have to get up super-early and take the train from Paris. Thanks also for the "warning" about the chocolate. How did you know? Is there a practical limit to how much you can take with you? Someone else mentioned that overhead space on the BRU-ORD flight can go quickly. I'm going to have to plan on leaving a lot of empty space in my overhead bag now!
Quote:
Originally Posted by tom911 View Post
I stayed at the Sheraton at the airport last week when my AA flight went mechanical. Similar to the Sheraton at FRA, you just walk outside and it's right there. Not cheap, though, as I checked for my stay and the lowest published rate was 209 euros.

I stayed across from Gare du Nord at the Hilton on an award stay my last night in the city. Before that I stayed at the adjoining Crowne Plaza on a 70 euro weekend rate. There's also a Sheraton behind both of these. If your stay is on a weekend you might look at any of these for cheap rates. You're just 2 short blocks to the train station and as little as 12 mins travel time to the airport.
More great info. Unless I could pick up a deal on the Sheraton via Priceline (and no guarantee that's what it would be), I think I'm best off going for a hotel right at the Midi station. Thanks!

Last edited by Mike Jacoubowsky; Apr 17, 11 at 7:52 pm Reason: merge replies
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Old Apr 25, 13, 1:25 pm   #18
  
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Fast Pass question at BRU, and 9:51 OK for 12 noon flight?

Resurrecting an old yet relevant (again) thread-

Coming back from the Tour de France on Monday, July 22nd, leaving from BRU. United 951 at 12 noon. I'll be in (paid) coach, my son on an award ticket in either C or F, don't recall which. Either way he gets a fast pass through security. Is that fast pass good only for him or can I tag along as well? I suspect the strict answer is no but it might generally be fine, but unless it's a definite yes, I won't try.

And then need to figure out how early to get to the airport. Would arriving at the airport at 9:51am for a Noon flight work? I generally try to get to the airport 2.5 hours ahead for international flights, but would much rather take the 8:01 train than either the 6:25 or 7:25.

Last time (2010) we took a late train out from Paris on Sunday night and stayed at the Ibis across from the main station. Worked great; some had suggested it was a questionable area but we had no issues. This time that doesn't work; we need to leave Paris Monday morning.
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Old Apr 25, 13, 3:28 pm   #19
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Jacoubowsky View Post
Resurrecting an old yet relevant (again) thread-

Coming back from the Tour de France on Monday, July 22nd, leaving from BRU. United 951 at 12 noon. I'll be in (paid) coach, my son on an award ticket in either C or F, don't recall which. Either way he gets a fast pass through security. Is that fast pass good only for him or can I tag along as well? I suspect the strict answer is no but it might generally be fine, but unless it's a definite yes, I won't try.

And then need to figure out how early to get to the airport. Would arriving at the airport at 9:51am for a Noon flight work? I generally try to get to the airport 2.5 hours ahead for international flights, but would much rather take the 8:01 train than either the 6:25 or 7:25.

Last time (2010) we took a late train out from Paris on Sunday night and stayed at the Ibis across from the main station. Worked great; some had suggested it was a questionable area but we had no issues. This time that doesn't work; we need to leave Paris Monday morning.
The fastpass lane has had a gate and bar code reader for you BP, but nobody watches it, so don't see why you couldn't slip through with your son if his BP is read correctly. note: I haven't been through BRU in almost 9 months, so things could change.
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