News from East Midlands Trains

06.05.2008

East Midlands Trains and Eurostar link up to offer through tickets to the continent from Loughborough

East Midlands Trains and Eurostar, the international high-speed train operator, are delighted to announce that they have extended the number of stations with through fares available to the continent.

Loughborough now joins the list of East Midlands Trains stations that provide through fares to Paris, Brussels, Disneyland ® Resort Paris and 100 other continental destinations. These stations already include Sheffield, Derby, Kettering, Nottingham, Leicester, Chesterfield, Wellingborough and Market Harborough.

The number of Eurostar journeys by travellers from the UK regions outside London increased by an average 45% in the first quarter of 2008. The number of Eurostar journeys by people living in Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire more than doubled.

Travellers from Loughborough can now buy tickets to Paris, Brussels (and any station in Belgium) and Disneyland ® Resort Paris from just £77 return. Fastest journey times from Loughborough to Paris and Brussels are 4hrs 40 minutes (including Eurostar’s 30 minute check-in).

Passengers can book through fares at www.eurostar.com and www.eastmidlandstrains.co.uk and via Eurostar’s Contact Centre. Unlike many air fares, through rail fares have no booking fees or taxes. Customers travelling with East Midlands Trains arrive in London directly at St Pancras International station, avoiding any need for a London Underground transfer to connect with Eurostar.

Rail travel to the continent is often quicker and more convenient than going by air. Travellers avoid the cost and time of getting to and from out-of-town airports because trains go city-centre to city-centre. And with Eurostar, check-in is just 30 minutes (10 minutes for Business Premier travellers), with no waiting for baggage reclaim because travellers keep their luggage with them during their journey. Through fares also offer travellers a guarantee that they will be put on the next available train if there is a late-running service in either direction.

David Horne, Commercial Director of East Midlands Trains, said: “Since Eurostar moved to share our St Pancras station in London we have had a great deal of interest in rail travel to the continent from passengers on our route. We’re delighted that travellers from Loughborough can now buy through fares to the continent. The through fares offer has already been very popular from the stations that have been available since November last year.”

Simon Montague, Director of Communications for Eurostar, said: “With Eurostar’s move to St Pancras International and with through fares at prices as good as or better than those offered by regional airlines, millions more UK residents have much greater choice in they way they travel to the continent.

“The increasing numbers of UK travellers choosing to travel to mainland Europe by rail shows that a clear shift is occurring, with more and more people regarding the train as a better option.”

More information and bookings for through fares from Loughborough are available by visiting eastmidlandstrains.co.uk, www.eurostar.com or by calling Eurostar on 08705 186 186. Travellers can also book through tickets to over 75 destinations across France; any station in Belgium; Dutch destinations including Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Schiphol and The Hague; and Aachen and Cologne in Germany.

Through fares are available 84 days in advance, in line with East Midlands Trains’ booking horizon