New direct train service to London launches in October

A new direct train service from Amsterdam and Rotterdam to London will launch on October 26, Dutch national rail operator NS and international high-speed rail service Eurostar announced on Monday. Tickets for this direct train will go on sale from September 1 through NS International.

The trip from Amsterdam to London will take 4 hours and 9 minutes, and from Rotterdam to London 3 hours and 29 minutes. Ticket prices start at 46 euros, and can be booked up to six months in advance.

“The direct high-speed train takes you quickly and without hassle from the center of Amsterdam and Rotterdam to the heart of London, making it a strong competitor to flying,” NS director Roger van Boxtel said. “Due to coronavirus, we had to wait longer for the start, but the number of international travelers will gradually increase again,” he said. “It is great news that we can therefore offer travelers between the Netherlands and the United Kingdom the choice of a sustainable train.”

Trains have provided a connection between the Netherlands and London for over a decade, but travelers had to stop for passport checks in Belgium. This stop will no longer be necessary on the direct service thanks to a new treaty signed by the Netherlands, France, Belgium and the United Kingdom to clear up legal questions, and set forth a plan for how each country is responsible for security along the international route.

The direct train was initially supposed to launch in December last year, but was delayed because the passport controls were not yet ready. The launch date was again delayed in April due to the coronavirus crisis.

“Early bookers have the best chance of getting discounted prices,” the NS said. Due to the coronavirus crisis, NS will give passengers extra flexibility with their ticket purchases. All tickets can be changed free of charge up to 14 days before departure. This will apply to all bookings through the end of the year, the NS said.