Eurostar tickets between London and Amsterdam go on sale

Tickets for the new Eurostar service between London and Amsterdam have gone on sale.

Direct high speed trains running from London St Pancras to the Dutch capital will start in early April, with journey times of three hours and 41 minutes.

Eurostar hopes the new city centre to city centre route will be a major competitor to one of Europe’s busiest international air routes with around four million passengers a year.

Tickets start at £35 one way with the first service leaving St Pancras on April 4.

Eurostar CEO Nicolas Petrovic, right, and Roger van Boxtel, CEO of Dutch train company NS, shake hands (EPA)

However return journeys will involve a change of trains in Brussels as the Dutch authorities have not yet completed arrangements for passport checks at Amsterdam station.

This will increase the return journey time to up to four hours 49 minutes.

Eurostar described this as a “temporary measure” while the governments in the UK and the Netherlands complete an agreement to allow checks to be carried out on departure in Amsterdam.

Workers on a Eurostar bound for Amsterdam at St Pancras station (REUTERS)

This is expected to be in place by the end of next year.

Eurostar ran a promotional train on Tuesday to mark the start of ticket sales.

The operator’s chief executive, Nicolas Petrovic, said: “Today’s inaugural service heralds an exciting new chapter in the expansion of high speed rail, strengthening the trading and tourism links between the UK and mainland Europe.

First Elizabeth line trains run from Paddington

“With just six weeks to go until the start of service we are looking forward to providing customers with a fast, comfortable connection from London to Amsterdam and transforming travel between these important capital cities.”

Mark Smith, founder of rail website The Man In Seat 61, said the direct trains will be “airline-competitive”.

He added: “Eurostar has already captured 70 per cent of the London-Paris market, and this new service is a game-changer for London-Amsterdam.

“It’s taken a while to implement, but the wait will be worth it.” 

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