Previously, travelers in Brussels had to get off the train for passport and security checks, but these checks are already taking place at the central stations of Amsterdam and Rotterdam. This reduces the travel time from Amsterdam to approximately 4 hours and from Rotterdam to 3.5 hours.
With the faster connection from the Netherlands (in the opposite direction, the Eurostar has been running direct since 2018), the train should become a better alternative to the plane. A flight to London City remains the fastest, but the train is more comfortable and offers more space to work along the way.
Low frequency due to corona crisis
The launch comes at a bad time: due to the corona crisis and the associated travel restrictions, there is little demand for train journeys to London. That is why the frequency is limited to only one or two trips per day, and none at all on the weekend.
Even on that limited number of journeys, it will not be very busy for the time being: the United Kingdom asks travelers from the Netherlands to quarantine for 14 days after arrival, and the Netherlands asks travelers from the United Kingdom to quarantine for ten days.
Ultimately, the intention is to increase the number of daily rides to five to six per day. Each train can take 900 passengers, so the Eurostar offers the same capacity between the Netherlands and London as 25 to 30 Boeing 737s or Airbus A320s.
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