European Sleeper night train: Ostend – Prague instead of Brussels – Prague?

European Sleeper and RegioJet could become an Ostend – Amsterdam – Prague night train.  For RegioJet, it would be a logical decision. Treinreiziger.nl spoke to the Czech discount rail operator.

No decision has been made, says RagioJet spokesperson Aleš Ondrůj to the Dutch train travellers’ site. But the Ostend option is being considered.

RegioJet now has a bus connection between Prague and London, which is very popular. That connection could be transformed to London – Oostend by bus, and Ostend – Prague by train. 

RegioJet uses this travel method in Czechia, Slovakia and Poland. In Split (Croatia), RegioJet operates coaches to Montenegro

Train path

A train path has been requested. A ‘train path’ is the equivalent of a ‘slot’ in aviation. It’s the time, schedule and space a train gets on the railway network. 

Departure time in Ostend would be 6.04 PM. Brussels at 7.21 PM. Amsterdam at 21.59 PM. Arrival time in Prague would be 9.56 AM the next day. 

The return trip would depart from Prague at 7.10 PM and arrive in Amsterdam at 6.01 AM, Brussels at 8.39 AM and Oostend at 9.56 AM. 

The infrastructure companies will now take this request in consideration and give an answer by August 2021. 

If run today, 6.04 PM is maybe a bit close to the 6.10 PM intercity service to Ghent Saint Peter’s and Antwerp-Central.

Ostend Railway Station.

History

Ostend is by far new to international train travel. Ostend Railway Station was inaugurated in 1913 during the reign of King Albert I and linked ferries from the United Kingdom to the continental railway networks. 

Between 1894 and 1993 the Compagnie Internationale des Wagons-Lits (CIWL) operated trains from Oostend to Vienna in Austria

And between 1997 and 2015 there was a Thalys service to Brussels and Paris

Facilities

Speaking of Wagons-Lits, Ostend has a depot or rail yard with all the necessary facilities to host the RailJet coaches. In fact, the ES/RJ project might choose Ostend over Forest-Voitures / Vorst-Rijtuigen, as it could be cheaper.

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Sources: Treinreiziger.nl, Wikipedia.

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