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Eurostar trains prepare for Amsterdam departures

Amsterdam Centraal StationEurostar has confirmed the addition of London to Amsterdam train services to timetables. The first service on the new cross-channel route will depart on the 4 April 2018.

When introduced, direct trains will run twice a day in the London to Amsterdam direction. Outbound trains from London St Pancras will leave at 08:31 and 17:31. In the reverse direction from Amsterdam, services will require passengers to switch trains and go through customs checkpoints in Brussels.

Explaining the lack of direct trains for the return journey, a Eurostar statement said the UK and Netherlands governments had no agreement in place which would allow passengers to clear passport control in Amsterdam. The statement did not specify the exact date the direct return trains would be introduced but did say there was a likelihood it would be by the end of next year.

Journey times for direct London to Amsterdam trains will be 3 hours, 41 minutes. Eurostar says adding the through services to Amsterdam will require tweaking timetables. The outcome of this is that passengers for Brussels will arrive 17 minutes earlier than at present.

Travel industry watchers say Eurostar won’t be able to compete directly with airlines on the London to Amsterdam route as they are only offering two departures a day. In comparison, there are about 70 flights between the two cities.

The experts say once the hiccough with having to change in Brussels has been sorted out, the train will probably draw business travellers with enhanced comfort and space plus wireless internet. Another plus is early-bird fares of just £35 for a single ticket.



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