Berlin by train soars in popularity with the Dutch, but London takes a dip


International train travel is becoming increasingly popular, with NS International reporting sales up 13% this summer. The most popular train destination was Berlin, where sales increased by 19%, the state-owned railway company said.

The increase is the third in a row and applies primarily to destinations no further away than 700 kilometres.

NS International director Heike Luiten says there are two reasons for the increase. New destinations, such as the Thalys high-speed service to Disneyland Paris, have had an impact, she said. In addition, people are more aware of the impact of travel on the environment.

The one destination out of favour was London, where sales fell 1%.

‘We expect this to pick up when we can start with passport and baggage checks in Amsterdam and Rotterdam can start,’ Luiten said. ‘We are getting a bit impatient for the Dutch government to conclude the relevant treaties with Belgium, France and Britain because we want to expand services even more.’

Travellers to London currently have to leave the train to go through immigration checks in Brussels.

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