Eurostar, the first high-speed rail service between the UK and mainland Europe has been working on an exciting phase in its development as it plans to expand its service further into the continent. Your next Easter city break to Amsterdam could see your arrive by high-speed rail in a trip taking up to four hours. With two trains a day, passengers will also be able to stop en route in Antwerp, Rotterdam and Amsterdam’s Schiphol station. Last month, the rail operator introduced its new e320 train on the London-Brussels route. The arrival of these new trains in part of a £1 billion programme investment for Eurostar’s fleet, stations and service which has seen the procurement of 17 new trains and refurbishing its original ones. Train tickets to Amsterdam from London will be a “range of competitive and affordable prices” compared to other forms of transport said a spokesman for the operator.
“We see a lot of interest and potential for the high-speed connection between these top destinations – London for visitors from the Netherlands and Amsterdam and Rotterdam as the new hotspots for the British traveller.”
With over three million leisure and business passengers travelling by air between London and Amsterdam, this is one of Europe’s most important routes. The introduction of a fast, comfortable point-to-point Eurostar service will greatly enhance the links between the UK and the Netherlands, revolutionising travel between these key financial and tourist hubs.
17 of the new trains have been engineered especially for Eurostar by Siemens. Built to a bespoke specification, they're compatible with the entire European high speed rail network, offering greater potential for further travel across Europe. New seats will have a deeper recline allowing you to stretch out and gently slide back without encroaching on the space of the traveller behind you. The recline is deeper in Business Premier and Standard Premier seats. Extra storage and a slim-line table will give space to spread out and work. Re-designed and re-engineered lighting for the trains giving more control over lighting, saving energy and letting daylight do the work while we’re above ground.
There will be free Wi-Fi delivered using a 3G mobile network throughout the train, It will have multiple networks in each country, with no roaming charges for the traveller. Travellers can connect wherever there’s a signal each train will have an antennae on the roof to boost the signal. With the Wi-Fi portal travellers can access the portal on their own device and it’s all hosted on board, so you won’t need a live internet connection.
Nicolas Petrovic, Chief Executive of Eurostar, said: “The introduction of the e320 on the Brussels route marks an important milestone and step change in the travel experience for our customers.” Demand for high-speed rail over plane is on the increase, which makes this service an exciting and essential development for Eurostar. It’s now in the final stages of planning for the new direct Netherlands service.
“Today is a very special day for NS and all the partners, because the start of services with the new train to Brussels literally brings the 'Amsterdam Route' closer,” according to Marjon Kaper, Managing Director NS International. “We see a lot of interest and potential for the high-speed connection between these top destinations – London for visitors from the Netherlands and Amsterdam and Rotterdam as the new hotspots for the British traveller.”
Direct Eurostar trains between London and Rotterdam are also said to be in the final stages of preparation and will follow after the London-Amsterdam link.
Petrovic said “With over 3 million passengers travelling by air between London and Amsterdam, this new route is key to our growth plans.”
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