Eurostar sales shoot up as passengers opt for the train

Other News Materials 14 April 2008 13:49 (UTC +04:00)

(dpa) - The Eurostar rail link through the Channel Tunnel between Britain, France and Belgium Monday reported a steep rise in turnover and passenger numbers in the first three months of this year.

The high-speed passenger train service, linking Britain to mainland Europe, said sales rose by 25.5 per cent to 178.4 million pounds (352.4 million dollars), as passenger numbers increased by 21 per cent.

It carried 2.17 million passengers from January to March, after seeing record passenger numbers during 2007.

Eurostar, which recently moved from London's Waterloo station to the refurbished St Pancras station, cut its travel time to Paris to two-and-a-quarter hours after completion of a high-speed track on the British side.

Its mainland European services are handled by France's SNCF and Belgium's SNCB in their countries.

Last week, operators Eurotunnel, which manages the undersea rail tunnels linking Britain and France, said that it had posted the first profit in its 14-year history in 2007.

Profit for the year was roughly 1 million euros (1.57 million dollars), compared to losses of 204 million euros in 2006 and of 2.81 billion euros in 2005.