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The Independent Travel
"Speeds of up to 200 miles per hour" - Eurostar advertisement in the American magazine 'Conde-Nast Traveler'

The ad looks enticing. Just call the toll-free number 1-800-EUROSTAR and find out all about cruising through France at 200 mph.

If you've been following the TGV story, you'll know that the French high- speed train can manage only 186mph on domestic routes. So how pleasing that trains between Paris and London can achieve significantly faster speeds - even if the British side of the line is still restricted to 100 mph.

Unfortunately, they can't. European Passenger Services, the British part of the operation, said that no such acceleration had taken place, and that the advertiser was being extravagant with the truth. Presumably American advertising rules are more relaxed about what constitutes accuracy. If you want to travel between Paris and London at 200 mph (and much more), take a plane.

"We speak your language perfectly," concludes the ad. Perhaps just a little too well.

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