Moonlight Express to include bar / restaurant coaches and sustainable quality food on Brussels – Liège – Berlin night train

Tuesday was a big day for rail news. Privateers European Sleeper from the Netherlands and Moonlight Express from Belgium announced night train services from Brussels to Berlin. Earlier, the Austrian Federal Railway carrier ÖBB (with its Nightjet brand) also showed interest in linking Brussels to Berlin. Are three sleeper services too much? Perhaps not.

Moonlight Express’ Louis De Jaeger (27) is adamant there is room for (at least) three. To Treinreiziger.nl De Jaeger says its competitor European Sleeper stops in Berlin due to plan infrastructure works. European Sleeper confirms it first planned to call Leipzig instead of Germany‘s federal capital. 

For European Sleeper, its main target is Prague in Czechia. The Dutch company is teaming up with the Czech public transport giant RegioJet

Budget friendly v. comfort and luxury

RegioJet is known for competitive prices. Cheap means cutting down on luxury, perhaps even comfort. Dare we say it? It fits the Dutch tendency to focus on cost and price. Just look at adverts on Dutch television. Maybe it’s cliché, but the Dutch  take price seriously. 

Moonlight Express’ story sounds different. In interviews, Louis De Jager states the train will only offer beds. The train will include bar and restaurant coaches. 

Moonlight Express aims at offering an experience, a sustainable way of travel and doesn’t want the journey “to be boring”. 

Passengers should be able to meet at the bar and enjoy better food than a croque-monsieur. The Belgian equipe already spoke to specialized caterers. 

More than the price, Louis De Jaeger and Louis-Philippe Lammertyn (33) aim at providing a good time. In their own words: “people should almost be sad to arrive at destination”.

Rolling stock

Moonlight Express has already a Wikipedia page, offering quite a lot of information. We already know Moonlight Express will lease coaches from RDC Deutschland.

There will be couchettes and beds. There will also be a space for bikes. 

A couchette ticket will – according to Wikipedia – include a drink, breakfast and water. 

To Treinreiziger.nl, De Jaeger says in the future they will look into buying rolling stock and adapting in or even order brand new coaches. 

In conclusion

With European Sleeper / RegioJet looking at a sharp price policy and Moonlight Express / RDC focussing on the experience, both night train products should be different enough not trip over each other’s feet. 

We can’t wait to sample both products.

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Sources: Treinreiziger.nl, Wikipedia, Business AM, Het Laatste Nieuws, Belga, Treinweb.nl 

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