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Eurostar launched a direct London-Amsterdam service—operating fully direct both to and from the Netherlands starting April 30. Tickets for the direct return journey go on sale today.

“The direct connection makes the train journey to London easier and faster. Checks in Brussels will no longer be necessary, saving travelers an hour of travel time. This way the train really becomes a fully-fledged alternative to the plane,” said Cora van Nieuwenhuizen, Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management in press materials.

The new connection—direct both ways—will offer hassle-free travel between these iconic European cities. Fares start at $46 each way for travel from Amsterdam starting on April 30 and from Rotterdam on May 18, 2020.

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.

“Our services from the UK to the Netherlands have proved very popular with over half a million travelers since launch,” added Mike Cooper, chief executive, Eurostar, in press materials. “Our fully direct service marks an exciting advance for high-speed rail and provides consumers with a comfortable, environmentally friendly alternative to the airlines on one of Europe’s busiest leisure and business routes.”

The inaugural service departed Amsterdam Centraal today at 7:48 a.m., marking the first direct departure a Eurostar train from the center of Amsterdam to the heart of London. The service will arrive just over four hours (4h 9m) later at St Pancras International.

Eurostar is heading to London and Amsterdam with direct service. (Photo courtesy of Eurostar.)

“We’re continuing to invest in modern, efficient transport links with the continent so our businesses and tourism industry can flourish,” said Grant Shapps, Secretary of State for Transport in the UK, in press materials. “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.”

Eurostar offers the most sustainable choice for short-haul European travel, with a journey between London and Amsterdam resulting in 80 percent less carbon per passenger than the equivalent flight. By choosing Eurostar, customers are also actively supporting the reforestation of woodland in Europe with a tree planted for every service that it operates across its routes.

“Brexit or not, London will be closer from 30th April. Eurostar will take travelers from the center of Amsterdam to the heart of London in four hours. The international services to Brussels and Paris are already a success, and from today we can now add London: the sustainable train is the future and brings Europeans together,” added Roger van Boxtel, Chief Executive, NS, in press materials.

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