Eurostar is the high-speed rail
service directly linking the UK to France and Belgium via the
Channel Tunnel. It started operating in 1994, providing city
centre to city centre services.
The fastest London-Paris Eurostar
journey time is 2 hours 35 minutes, London-Brussels 2 hours
15 minutes and London-Lille just 1 hour 40 minutes.
Eurostar runs up to 16 services to
Paris and nine to Brussels daily. In addition, up to nine
trains stop at Lille in northern France, and up to four
services stop at Calais Frethun en route. Also, up to 14
trains call daily at the terminal at Ashford International,
which serves as the principal passenger gateway from Kent.
There are direct daily services from
Waterloo and Ashford to the gates of Disneyland® Resort Paris
and, during the winter holiday season, Eurostar operates two
services every week from Waterloo and Ashford to Moutiers and
Bourg St Maurice in the French Alps. Eurostar also runs a
direct service to Avignon in Provence on Saturdays during the
In addition, Eurostar offers
connecting tickets to over 100 destinations across France,
Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands. For example, Lyon can
be reached in five hours from London and Marseille in seven
hours. Brussels Midi is the gateway for the Netherlands and
Germany with easy connections to Amsterdam (about six hours
from London) and Cologne (about five hours).
All Eurostar tickets to / from
Brussels are valid for travel to / from any Belgian station
at no extra cost.
In 2007 the second section of the
new UK high-speed rail line will open. St Pancras
International will become Eurostar’s new London home and
create a high-speed link to the Continent from the heart of
The completion of the UK high-speed
line will further reduce journey times and open up
international rail services to anyone living north of London.
Fastest London-Paris journey time
will be 2 hours 15 minutes, London-Brussels 1 hour 53 minutes
and London-Lille 1 hour 20 minutes.
Eurostar's ticket prices vary to
meet all budgets. Leisure travellers enjoy the cheapest fares
- with permanent lead-in short break fares from £59 return.
Since starting operations in
November 1994, Eurostar has more than doubled the total
number of passengers travelling (by air or rail) between
London and Paris/Brussels. In ten years Eurostar has carried
over 60 million passengers.
In September 2003, Eurostar began
carrying guide dogs on its services from London Waterloo to
Paris and Brussels. In April 2005, Eurostar began carrying
other assistance dogs.
To establish the Eurostar service,
it was necessary to overcome significant rail network
differences between the UK, France and Belgium. European rail
networks primarily focus on domestic services, employing
different technologies, for example, in power supply and
signalling, as well as in commercial areas such as ticket
distribution systems. Eurostar has successfully overcome all
these obstacles, operating safely and efficiently across the