posted on 25th Nov 2023 19:19
Starting from June 2024 there will be a six-month interruption of Amsterdam to London Eurostar high speed services due to a massive reconstruction project in Amsterdam Centraal station. London-bound services are not possible from Amsterdam Centraal as the building, hosting the pass control and security check for passengers prior to boarding, has to be removed. Reinstatement of these controls can only take place if the new premises for these required controls for UK-bound train operations will be opened.
The current check and controls are taking place in a rather new building at the East end of platform 15, the new premises to be created, called Amstel Passage, will be located on ground floor under the platforms and tracks, which are on level +1. The new premises are scheduled for opening in December 2024. Pass and luggage controls for passengers departing to UK are required as the latter is not part of the Schengen customs zone. For continental Europe-bound passengers the controls take place in London.
Initial plans for the reconstruction of the Amsterdam Centraal station were supposing an interruption of opposite London to Amsterdam Eurostar services for an 11-month period. Due to massive critics, the plans were changed and a feasibility study was held for avoiding any Amsterdam - London Eurostars interruption. However, the outcome is that it is impossible to avoid any interruption.
The only other stop of London - Amsterdam Eurostar high speed operations in the Netherlands is Rotterdam Centraal. Eurostar says that terminating and starting services at Rotterdam Centraal is not economically viable as the capacity of the customs and security control at Rotterdam Centraal is insufficient, so London-bound Eurostar trains would be almost entirely empty (about 760 empty seats per train). This means that the Amsterdam - London high speed services will be suspended at least for the Amsterdam - Brussels section.
For passengers from the Netherlands to London ‘old times revive’: traveling to Brussels, changing trains and checking in at Eurostar for London. All parties involved, which are the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure, NS, Eurostar and Dutch rail infrastructure manager Prorail, will continue to discuss and find improvements for the situation to reduce inconvenience as much as possible and find optimal alternatives for traveling by train between the Netherlands and the UK. Travel organisations say that the Amsterdam - London Eurostar service suspension will generate 21 more daily flights between Amsterdam and London.