When it comes to traveling between London and Brussels, the Eurostar train service is the most popular and preferred mode of transport for many travelers. The Eurostar train service is fast, comfortable, eco-friendly, and offers several benefits compared to other modes of transportation. In this article, we will explore the benefits of the Eurostar train service, how to prepare for a journey between London and Brussels, and tips for a smooth journey. Additionally, we will highlight some popular Belgian destinations that can be reached via Eurostar.
Benefits of the Eurostar Train Service
The Eurostar train service has several advantages over other modes of transportation when it comes to traveling between London and Brussels. Here are some benefits of choosing Eurostar:
Speed and Convenience
The Eurostar train is a high-speed train that can reach speeds of up to 186 mph (300 kph). It takes only 2 hours and 1 minute to travel from London to Brussels, making it one of the fastest ways to get between the two cities. Additionally, the Eurostar runs from city center to city center, eliminating the need to travel to and from airports.
Comfort and Amenities Onboard
Eurostar trains offer a range of classes, from Standard to Business Premier, to suit different budgets and needs. All classes feature comfortable seating, ample legroom, and power outlets. Business Premier passengers also have access to lounges and complimentary meals and drinks. Additionally, Wi-Fi is available onboard, allowing passengers to stay connected throughout their journey.
Compared to flying or driving, taking the Eurostar is a more environmentally friendly option. The train emits up to 90% less CO2 than flying and up to 80% less CO2 than driving, according to Eurostar. Additionally, the Eurostar train service is committed to reducing its carbon footprint by using renewable energy sources, reducing waste, and recycling materials.
Preparing for the Journey
To make your journey between London and Brussels as smooth as possible, here are some tips to prepare for your Eurostar journey:
Booking a Eurostar Ticket
Eurostar trains are a reservation only service. Tickets can be booked online up to 180 days in advance, and the earlier you book, the cheaper the fare is likely to be. Eurostar offers several types of fares, including flexible, semi-flexible, and non-flexible options, depending on your needs.
Choosing the Right Class of Travel
Eurostar offers different classes of travel to suit different budgets and needs. Standard class offers comfortable seating and onboard refreshments. Premier Business class offers more spacious seating, complimentary meals and drinks, and lounge access. Additionally, Standard Premier class offers a balance of comfort and affordability, with more spacious seating and a light meal and drink included in the ticket price.
Passport and Visa Requirements
As with any international travel, it’s important to check passport and visa requirements before booking your Eurostar ticket. British citizens can travel to Brussels with just a valid passport, while non-EU citizens may need a visa. Additionally, it’s important to ensure that your passport is valid for the duration of your trip and that you have any necessary travel documents, such as travel insurance, ready before you depart.
Eurostar has similar luggage restrictions to airlines, with a maximum allowance of two pieces of luggage per passenger. There are also restrictions on the size and weight of each piece of luggage, so it’s important to check these before packing. Additionally, Eurostar offers a luggage transfer service, allowing passengers to send their luggage ahead to their destination and avoid carrying it onboard.
Traveling with the Eurostar from London to Brussels
- Arriving at St. Pancras International station: St. Pancras International is the departure station for Eurostar trains in London. The station is well-connected to the rest of the city, with multiple underground lines and bus routes serving the station.
- Boarding the Eurostar train: Eurostar trains have a dedicated check-in area and passengers are advised to arrive at least 45 minutes before departure. After checking in, passengers can proceed through security and onto the platform to board the train.
- Journey through the Channel Tunnel: The Channel Tunnel, also known as the “Chunnel,” is a 31-mile (50 km) long undersea rail tunnel that connects the United Kingdom and France. The Eurostar train travels through the tunnel at high speeds, taking around 20 minutes to complete the journey.
- Arriving at Brussels Midi station: Brussels Midi is the arrival station for Eurostar trains in Brussels. The station is located in the heart of the city and is well-connected to other parts of Brussels by public transportation.
Eurostar to Antwerp, Bruges and Ghent
Antwerp, Bruges, and Ghent are three of the most popular Belgian destinations that can be reached via Eurostar. If you are looking for a charming, medieval city with great food, art, and architecture, then Antwerp should be your destination. Bruges is a picturesque city, known for its canals, medieval architecture, and chocolate shops. Ghent is another historic city with beautiful buildings, cozy cafes, and a lively atmosphere.
The good news is that you can easily travel to these destinations from Brussels using the Belgian Rail services, and the ticket is included in your Eurostar ticket. The journey from Brussels to Antwerp takes around 45 minutes, while the journey to Bruges takes around 1 hour and 10 minutes. The journey to Ghent takes around 30 minutes.
FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions
In conclusion, the Eurostar train service offers a fast, convenient, and eco-friendly way to travel between London and Brussels. With its comfortable seating, range of classes, and onboard amenities, the Eurostar is a great choice for travelers of all budgets and needs. By following the tips outlined in this article, you can prepare for a smooth journey and enjoy all that Brussels has to offer.