Eurostar, the high-speed passenger service connecting the UK and mainland Europe, today reported a strong performance in the first quarter of 2018 with record Q1 passenger volumes. Sales revenues grew by 9% year-on-year (£253m 2018: £232m 2017) while passenger numbers increased by 4% (2.36m 2018: 2.27m 2017).
The positive momentum reported last year has continued into 2018 underpinned by a further increase in the number of US travellers as well as growth in the business market. Over the first three months of the year the number of passengers from the US rose by 27% which is testament to the enduring popularity of Eurostar’s destinations among Northern American travellers.
At the same time, the company recorded a robust performance in the business market with the volume of business customers growing by 6% year-on-year as business travellers increasingly choose the ease and comfort of high speed rail over plane for cross Channel travel.
Launch of London-Amsterdam service
The early part of 2018 was marked by the launch of Eurostar’s new service from London St Pancras to Amsterdam and Rotterdam on 4th April linking the UK and the Netherlands in just three hours. Offering a city centre to city centre connection, stylish, spacious new trains and highly competitive fares, demand for the service has been strong.
With over 4 million passengers travelling by air every year between London and Amsterdam, the market is the same size as the London to Paris market at the time of Eurostar’s launch of service in 1994. Given that the number of travellers between London and Paris has more than doubled over the last 23 years, the growth potential for the new Amsterdam service and the overall market is significant.
Mike Cooper, Chief Executive, Eurostar, said: “We have made a positive start to the year and reported a good performance in the first quarter buoyed up by growth in the US and business markets. Our new service from London to Amsterdam has met with an enthusiastic response and demand is strong as customers welcome this compelling alternative to the airlines.”
New hotel collection for Eurostar customers
In the latest in a series of innovations, Eurostar is now offering travellers access to a range of hand-picked hotels with special rates and benefits for its customers.
The new collection has been curated to provide passengers with city-centre hotels across all price-points, grouped in different themes to make booking the ideal trip quick and easy. From design gems to gastronomic hot-spots, the new platform will help customers identify the perfect, tried and tested hotel choice.