Eurostar won’t now have to suspend its service between Amsterdam and London next year, but passengers travelling back from the Dutch capital will have to change at Brussels.
There will continue to be a direct service from London to Amsterdam, but no direct return service for six months from next summer. This is because renovation work at Amsterdam Central Station means there is no space for checks on UK passport holders.
Eurostar had warned its Amsterdam-London service could be taken out of service for up to a year from June 2024 because of work to build a new terminal at Amsterdam Central Station.
There had been plans to build a temporary terminal in the Amstelpassage under the station, but that was dismissed because it meant fewer passengers would be able to travel and the new terminal would take longer to complete.
From June next year, passengers travelling between Amsterdam and London will have to change trains at Brussels, adding about 35 minutes to the total journey time.
The direct Amsterdam-London service currently takes 4 hours 15 minutes.
Dutch Railways (NS) told the Independent: “Unfortunately, we have had to conclude that despite all efforts, there will be a period in which there will be no direct train to London from Amsterdam.
“That period is expected to be six months (approximately June 2024–January 2025).
“That is very disappointing because we have worked hard in recent years to make the Eurostar to London an attractive alternative to the plane. It is a particularly difficult puzzle to solve. If there had been a simple solution, all parties would have seized it with both hands.
“Unfortunately, after various investigations, that simple solution appears not to exist.”