Starting April 30, Eurostar will launch London – Amsterdam direct rail passenger service with tickets being on sale from 11 February.
The inaugural service took place on February 4, at Amsterdam Centraal station with the Minister of Infrastructure Cora Van Nieuwenhuizen and Ankie Broekers-Knol, the Secretary of State for Security and Justice in the Netherlands. After four hours, the train arrived at St Pancras International station where Grant Shapps, Secretary of State for Transport in the UK welcomed the new direct service.
“The direct connection makes the train journey to London easier and faster. Checks in Brussels will no longer be necessary, saving travellers an hour of travel time. This way the train really becomes a fully-fledged alternative to the plane,” Cora van Nieuwenhuizen said.
With competitive fares from just £35 (EUR 41) each way, tickets are available for travel from Amsterdam starting on 30th April and from Rotterdam on 18th May 2020.
“The days of passengers being forced to decamp from the train at Brussels to file through passport control will soon be over, as we look forward to direct, return, high-speed services to Amsterdam and beyond,” Shapps said.
There are currently three outbound services a day from the UK to the Netherlands. The direct inbound journey from Amsterdam to London will start with two services, with the aim of increasing to a third, and then a fourth.
In 2018, Eurostar launched a direct service from London to Rotterdam and Amsterdam, with a return journey connecting through Brussels where passport controls and security screening are carried out. This connecting journey was a temporary measure whilst the governments of the UK, France, Belgium and the Netherlands completed an agreement to enable passport checks to be conducted on departure in the Netherlands as in other key Eurostar destinations. The agreement is now in place to allow direct return journeys from Amsterdam from 30th April 2020 and Rotterdam from 18th May 2020.