April 20, 2024

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European Sleeper Expands Service to Czech Republic

3 min read

European Sleeper founders Elmer van Buuren and Chris Engelsman at the launch of their night train in May 2023 (Photo: European Sleeper) European Sleeper

European Sleeper, the Dutch-Belgian night train operator, announces the expansion of its service into the Czech Republic with the inauguration of its first ride to Prague on 25 March 2024. The expansion comes ten months after the introduction of the Brussels to Berlin route, marking a significant milestone for European cross-border rail connections.

The new route will encompass stops in Brussels, Amsterdam, Berlin, Dresden, Bad Schandau, and Prague, connecting four countries and four European capitals. Additionally, passengers from Paris and London can access these destinations with a single transfer in Brussels, further enhancing the accessibility of the European network. Tickets for the new service start at 49 euros for a seat and 79 euros for a couchette in a shared compartment, with improved rental carriages enhancing the travel experience for passengers.

The route extension will be commemorated with a special event on 25 March 2024, where press, trade representatives, and partners will embark on the inaugural journey from Brussels to Prague. The following day, 26 March, the official launch celebrations will take place in Prague, coinciding with the departure of the first trains to Amsterdam and Brussels. The event is being organised in collaboration with Prague City Tourism, CzechTourism, visit.brussels, Visit Dresden, and České dráhy.

Elmer van Buuren, Co-Founder of European Sleeper, expressed enthusiasm about the expansion, stating, “We are truly thrilled to be launching the new route to Prague less than a year after launching our first direct service from Brussels to Berlin.” He further added: “Our goal is to add a new route each year so we can continue to contribute to a more integrated and sustainable European transportation network.” Indeed, Looking ahead, European Sleeper plans to launch a new route connecting Amsterdam, Brussels, and Barcelona in 2025 or 2026, as part of efforts to further expand its destination offerings and improve European cross-border rail connections.

The new route (Source: European Sleeper)

Connecting Europe

The Czech Minister of Transport commented: “Night trains are now making a comeback all over Europe and I am very glad that the Czech Republic is not left behind. It is an environmentally friendly alternative to air transport, which confirms that rail will play an increasingly important role in the future. For us, this is another signal that we urgently need not only to complete the modernization of existing rail corridors but also to speed up the preparation and construction of high-speed lines.” Michal Krapinec, CEO of ČD, highlighted the partnership with European Sleeper as part of ČD’s commitment to providing comfortable and sustainable travel options across Europe.

Martin Dvořák, the Czech Minister for European Affairs added: “The opening of the new route of the European Sleeper night train is another step to strengthen the connection between EU countries and support sustainable transport in Europe. This project not only simplifies travel between Brussels and Prague but also reflects our common European values and the drive for a greener and more connected continent. I am very pleased to be part of this initiative, which proves that collaboration and innovation can lead to real solutions in the field of mobility and sustainability.”

František Reismüller, Director of the Czech Tourism Authority, emphasised the tourism benefits of the new line, particularly for cyclists and hiking enthusiasts, who can now conveniently access popular destinations along the route. Patrick Bontinck, CEO of visit.brussels, underscored the importance of accessible train travel in reinforcing Brussels’ position as a sustainable destination and attracting more visitors to the region. Corinne Miseer, Managing Director of Dresden Marketing GmbH, praised the expansion for its focus on sustainability and its potential to attract more visitors to Dresden.

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