When the folks at Eurostar begin to unwrap the gifts they received for their train’s 20th birthday this Nov. 14, the biggest package will contain the new e320 train that promises to revolutionize the still revolutionary practice of riding from Paris to London by rail. They’re unveiling that gift at London’s St. Pancras station today.
In 1994, Eurostar was established as a partnership between three railway companies: SNCF, SNCB and LCR (London and Continental Railways). On Sept. 1, Eurostar became a single, unified corporate entity owned by three shareholders: SNCF, SNCB and LCR. Twenty years after its launch, the Eurostar dominates market share against the airlines for London/Paris traffic and the new train should only accelerate that trend.
The e320 train (see video below) will enter commercial service with ten e320 trains at the end of 2015 and now Eurostar has decided to order a further seven more e320s. With the original order of e320s now in the final stage of completion, this increases the number of new trains to 17 in total.
The e320 trains will entirely broaden Eurostar’s horizons because they are ‘inter-operable’ with the ability to operate across diverse European signaling systems, opening up the potential for a whole range of new direct services between the UK and European city center destinations. Beyond its core routes connecting London to Paris, Brussels and Lille, Eurostar also connects to the French Alps, Swiss Alps and Geneva. In May begins a new year-round direct service to Provence, stopping at Lyon, Avignon and Marseille, followed at the end of 2016 by the launch of a direct route to Amsterdam with stops in Antwerp, Rotterdam and Schiphol along the way.
“With just one year to go until our new e320 train comes into service, passengers will see a complete transformation of our service,” said Nicolas Petrovic, chief executive of Eurostar. “The combination of bold design, chic interiors and Wi-Fi connectivity will raise the bar, providing an unprecedented level of style and comfort for our customers.”
It’s an improvement that may help Eurostar compete against the possibility of a second rail company using the Chunnel. Plans to put another rail line in the Chunnel. The Channel Tunnel issued a ‘Certificate B’ operating license to Deutsche Bahn (DB), the German rail line. DB has for year’s coveted the notion of high-speed service between Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Köln and London.
The e320s can carry 900 passengers, percent. Furthermore the train can reach speeds of 200 mph. The look will beautiful as well with external livery and interiors designed by Pininfarina, an Italian design house, known for car designs. Energy efficiency and enhanced passenger experience are the goals. The Eurostar fleet will feature free Wi-Fi throughout and a broader range of information and entertainment options including live news feeds and weather reports as well as a collection of destination guides. The e320s will also feature more space per seat with each seat equipped with power points and a USB socket as well as a newly designed bar buffet, ergonomically designed reclining seats and increased luggage areas.
To mark its two decades of service, over the next two weeks, Eurostar will be staging celebratory activities on-board its trains and in its stations. This includes surprise golden tickets, giveaways and special events for customers as well as a dedicated birthday promotion running between Nov. 13 and 24 offering return trips in Standard for £59/€69 and in Standard Premier for £149/€179 – for travel between Jan 5 and Feb. 12.
Last year, Eurostar more than doubled its profits, earning £52 million. Currently, the British government is hoping to sell its 40 percent share of the train, as part of its economic austerity plan.
Read more travel news at www.travelpulse.com
Breaking news from The Train Chartering Company provides insight into some of its range of rail applications.
In one week, Train Chartering delivered quality train events for:
- A large group;
- The hosted VIP party;
- A TV advert shoot;
- The hire of a private train.
Large group: A significant player in the finance sector needed comfortable and reliable transport for 300 employees for its annual out-of-office convention at a business hotel. Train Chartering identified and delivered the optimum travel solution, which included some management of coach transfers. On-time managed journeys both ways added tangible value to the smooth-running of their event.
Hosted VIP party: A venue in rural England has developed a strategy for seeking investment to develop its niche offering. Integral to its planning is the repeat use of Train Chartering’s quality project management and VIP guidance. This includes welcoming reception facilities prior to departure, the securing of private First Class carriages on intercity train services and the provision of tailored on-board catering during the escorted journey. In this focus week, Train Chartering once again operated a successful journey with measurable impact on increased funding for our long-standing client.
TV advert shoot: Finding train- or rail-based film locations on the mainline railway is a challenge for many location managers and media agencies. Train Chartering has many years’ experience in this area for a range of applications, from feature movies and TV dramas to ads and photoshoots. Most recently, the client required a modern commuter train at a platform of a normal station for an 8-hour TV ad shoot. This could have been a challenging brief on the busy British rail network without Train Chartering’s expertise, which delivered everything the director required.
Hire of a private train: Although group travel on scheduled train services often fulfils customer requirements, there are occasions when a client requires the profile and privacy of a special train charter; profile for itself with its guests (private trains always impress) and a degree of privacy in restricting public access. Our passengers on their hired train had a seamless and enjoyable journey, which was appreciated by the corporate organiser.
Simon Pielow of Train Chartering says, “We chose to highlight this period for the diversity of solutions we delivered, but there are not enough days in the week to illustrate all the applications of quality rail travel.”
About The Train Chartering Company Ltd (Train Chartering):
Contact: Simon Pielow, www.trainchartering.com, infoATtrainchatering.com, +44 (0)1249 890 176
CHARTER TRAINS & GROUP RAIL TRAVEL SINCE 1998. REAL EXPERIENCE FOR THE BENEFIT OF OUR CLIENTS: Train Chartering, now in its 17th year, has provided private train charters and carriage hires to an extraordinary range of clients. Extensive experience allows the company to select the best trains available along with a suite of onboard services, handling every detail from complex scheduling to food, entertainment and train branding. Train Chartering is a member of ABTA.
GROUPS OF 10 TO 700+: Private carriages and escorted group travel provide a rail travel solution for any reasonable budget, from groups of 10 to over 700 per train.
LUXURY & VIP TRAIN TRAVEL: Train Chartering handles unique, individual and private luxury train journeys for clients; from individual seats to entire rail cars, carriages and trains. Its business, the Luxury Train Club, now has over 7,500 members and is ABTA-registered.
PASSENGER TRANSPORT CHARTER BY AIR, LAND AND WATER: Train Chartering offers transfers, ground handling & on-board services.
CATERING: Train Chartering facilitates catering as well as the branding and theming of the train or carriage for a memorable and unique event for every charter.
BRANDING: Brand individual carriages or an entire train, such as the Soundwave Express. Most branding is on a smaller scale, such as window signs or embroidered headrest covers.
PROFESSIONALISM & EXPERIENCE: The extent and professionalism of the company’s project and guest management services is unique in the rail industry and rare in the passenger charter sector; caring for every aspect of the event, from first contact through to ground handling in stations and transfers to the post-trip event.
Next ANZAC Day, The Ghan will embark on its fifth annual ANZAC Tribute journey (April 23-26) commemorating the role of our servicemen and women in all major conflicts.
Marking the centenary of ANZAC, the special four-day journey from Darwin to Adelaide will take guests to Alice Springs to experience an unforgettable and poignant day of commemoration at ANZAC Hill.
The ANZAC Tribute journey will feature:
- Included dining, beverages and touring for all Gold and Platinum Service guests
- Nitmiluk Gorge cruise and a live concert under the stars in Katherine
- Spectacular Outback dinner at the MacDonnell Ranges
- Dawn Service at ANZAC Hill in Alice Springs followed by gunfire breakfast
To be part of the 2015 journey, book through www.greatsouthernrail.com.au or call 1800 725 993 to speak to a member of the friendly Great Southern Rail team.
The Ghan is a proud supporter of the Returned & Services League of Australia. For every ticket sold on the ANZAC Tribute Journey, $100 is donated to RSL Australia in support of returned and service personnel.
Fares per person one way
Platinum Service: $4849 (adult/pension)
Gold Twin Service: $3599 (adult), $2799 (pension)
Gold Single Service: $3239 (adult), $2519 (pension)
Rail Europe has come up with a pretty nice Christmas gift for that traveler on your list. Rail Europe’s “Cyber Week” specials are discounting two of the company’s most popular passes if booked between Dec. 1 and Dec. 5. During that period, travelers can get $75 off of a Swiss Pass and $100 off of a Eurail Global Pass when they book online.
The Eurail Global Pass entitles travelers to 15 days of unlimited travel on the national rail networks of Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland (includes Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland), Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey.
You must use coupon code EURAILCYBER14 to get $100 off Eurail Global Passes. Prices start at $484 for a Eurail Global Pass and if you’re traveling by March 31, book the Eurail Global Pass Off Peak Promotion for 20 percent off. You can book the Eurail Global Pass at http://www.raileurope.com/rail-tickets-passes/eurail-global-pass/index.html
The Swiss Pass provides extensive travel throughout the Swiss Travel System, including trains, buses and boats. It also includes free entry at more than 470 museums. Use coupon code SWISSCYBER14 to get $75 off Swiss Passes. Prices start at $276 for a Swiss Pass.
Read more travel news at www.travelpulse.com
You can book the Swiss Pass at http://www.raileurope.com/rail-tickets-passes/swiss-pass/index.html
Read the Jetsetters Magazine feature about Ride The High Country with Swiss Pass.
Starting December 14, 2014, Thello will offer journeys between the Southeast of France and Italy with a new journey from Milan to Marseille.
Milan has the reputation of being the most modern of Italian cities, while staying faithful to its pas history. It is a place where the Duomo di Milano, Italy’s largest cathedral and a monument that took almost 600 years to complete, meets a bustling, cultivated, fashionable and forward thinking city. Cafes, chique boutiques museums, universities and sports clubs help elevate the status of Milan as on of Italy’s must-see destinations.
Marseille is the second largest city in France, after Paris. It’s a romantic city with a mild Mediterranean climate that makes it one of France’s sunniest destinations. While in Marseille, check out the city’s Old Port located at the end of the historic street of La Canebière. It offers a lovely view of nearby islands and landmarks including Château d’If, famous for being the setting for Alexandre Dumas’ famous novel The Count of Monte Cristo.
The best part about the newest routes served by Thello is that you’re not limited to Milan and Marseille. The train ride features stops in Genoa, Savona, Monaco, Nice, Cannes and Toulon, among others.
Book your tickets today and catch the first trip of this new Thello journey on December 14, 2014.
Eurail Passes are an essential part of a traveler’s kit. The Eurail Global Pass lets you to board as many trains as you want in any of the 23 participating countries throughout Europe, helping make possible the most ambitious travel plans.
Travelers with a more focused itinerary can pick 4 bordering countries from a choice of 26 countries and travel by train without worries in those 4 countries using the Eurail Select Pass.
The Eurail Global Pass and the Eurail Select Pass are available in a number of validities. The Eurail Global Consecutive Pass lets you select between 15 days and up to 3 months of continuous access to the railways.
The Eurail Global Flexi Pass offers either 10 or 15 days of travel to be used within a period of 2 months.
The Eurail Select Pass is valid for a period of 5, 6, 8 or 10 travel days to be used within 2 months.
Here is your chance to participate in our great UK Scavenger Hunt! Every week we will be posting a new Google Street View link to a train station within the UK; all you have to do is find the items we ask for and take a screenshot.
Simply send us your screenshot of the located item via Facebook private message and you will be entered to win a pair of 15-day Eurail Global Flexi Passes in First Class for travel across Europe!
Here’s how you can participate
1.) Visit ACP Rail’s Facebook page every Monday, Wednesday, & Friday this November to correctly locate the requested item and capture a picture of it via a screenshot.
2.) Send in your screenshot of the item to us via Facebook message BEFORE we post the subsequent item.
3.) A winner will be randomly selected among the participants who have successfully found all 12 items.
Do you want to give it a try? Here is your first challenge!
Your first item can be found at Manchester Piccadilly Station! You have to find:
The Tie Rack!
Participation in this contest is subject to the official rules. The approximate retail value of the prize is $2,292 USD. The contest is open until November 30, 2014.
Visit Berlin this fall and winter seasons as the city gears up to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the historic Fall of the Wall. The 7 Day and 10 Day German Rail Pass have a discount of up to 25% off regular prices when purchased between October 1st and December 7th, 2014. The promotional passes are ideal for those who will travel by rail on German trains between November 1st, 2014 and end by January 31st, 2015.
Along with the savings on their German Rail Pass, pass holders will also be eligible for a number of offers and discounts within Berlin including:
- One of 500 free Welcome Cards from Berlin Tourism, given on a first-come, first-serve basis.
- Up to 25% discount on boat trips on the river Spree and Havel.
- Up to 25% discount on the Late Night Ticket at TV Tower Alexanderplatz.
- Up to 20% discount for sightseeing on the Basic City Circle Yellow bus tours.
As you plan you stay in Berlin, why not visit a few more German destinations such as Hamburg, Munich, Frankfurt, Cologne and many more? The “25 Years Fall of the Wall” promotion for the German Rail Pass applies to the 7 Day and 10 Day German Rail Pass in both First and Standard class adult fares. Two adults traveling together can benefit from a discounted Twin Pass and youths under the age of 26 can choose a promotional pass in standard class.
German Rail Pass Promotion must be purchased prior to December 7th, 2014 for travel between November 1st and January 31st 2015.
Starting October 1st, you’ll be able to save up to 20% off the purchase of a classic BritRail Pass, BritRail England Pass and BritRail South West Pass. The low season BritRail Passes can be used for travel during the months of November, December, January and February, providing you with the opportunity to enjoy destinations throughout England Scotland and Wales.
There’s a BritRail Pass for every need! Spend your low season in the mild climate of South West England as you travel with a BritRail South West Pass, discover cities and explore the countryside throughout all of England with a BritRail England Pass or simply enjoy the freedom to travel on as many trains as you wish, during your stay in England, Scotland and Wales using a classic BritRail Pass. All in all, there are more than 18,000 daily departures to over 2,500 destinations in England, Scotland and Wales.
All low season BritRail Passes are offered in a wide range of validities, including Flexi Passes for a period of 3, 4, 8 or 15 travel days to be used within 2 months or Consecutive Passes for a period of 3, 4, 8, 15, 22 days or 1 month of travel. You can also choose to travel in either first or standard class BritRail pass, where first class offers additional benefits on select trains such as free Wi-Fi, more spacious seating, at seat meal service, free newspapers and complimentary tea and biscuits. You can take advantage of savings from the Low Season Discount if you purchase your pass between October 1st, 2014 and February 21st, 2015.
ACP Rail is giving away a free UK SIM card when you use the coupon code UKSIM14 with your purchase of a BritRail Pass on ACPRail.com. This exclusive limited time promotion will allow the first 100 travelers using the coupon code with a BritRail Pass in their cart to receive a free Pay As You Go UK SIM Card.
Stay in touch with friends and family while traveling. A UK SIM card enables your phone to access the O2 cell phone network to use for phone calls and mobile data. This SIM card provides coverage in over 160 countries. It includes a US phone number and a UK phone number.
- Receive a UK and US phone number
- Works on the O2 network in the UK
- FREE incoming calls and text messages in the UK
- FREE for family and friends to call you
- FREE voicemail and 24/7 Customer Service (in the UK)
- Pay as you go! No contracts, no credit checks and no monthly fees
- Recharge minutes anytime via the phone or web, or enable auto-recharge
- View call records and receipts online
For more information visit the UK SIM Card information page
Book your pass now as this offer is valid through November 30, 2014 or while supplies last.
* This offer is only valid for purchases made in Canada and in the United States
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