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Amsterdam-Antwerp daytrip - cheapest price?

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Jul 9th, 2007, 11:47 AM
  #1
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Amsterdam-Antwerp daytrip - cheapest price?

I am thinking of taking such a daytrip on August 12 or 13. But because I've been waffling so long, there are no longer any Smilys fares available, so far as I can see. The cheapest I can do for a roundtrip daytrip is for about 43 Euros, so far as I can see. Is this the best I can expect? (This was SNCF.)
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Jul 9th, 2007, 11:53 AM
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Forget about the Thalys - take hourly IC trains from Amsterdam that have a flat fare that is probably about the same as SMILYS but which can be bought the day of teh train.

www.ns.nl Dutch railways
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Jul 9th, 2007, 12:03 PM
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But that's a considerably longer ride if IC, isn't it?

I am sort of leaning against the daytrip idea now, and just focusing on outlying towns near Amsterdam.
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Jul 9th, 2007, 12:15 PM
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No it is not unless the high-speed tracks have opened in Holland, which i believe they were due to do about this time

but if not the Thalys train is marginally faster because it does not stop as much - since Thalys goes currently i think on older congested tracks they both go about the same speed

And even if the new line is open then i think they are slated to have Sprinter domestic IC trains on the high-speed line (antwerp being domestic for all practical porpoises)

Only between Brussels and Paris currently is it truly high speed up to around 190 mph

But IC nice you can just hop on and buy ticket just before at flat price.

Thalys trains also do not go into Antwerpen Centraal but stop only at suburban Berchem station then you have to take a shuttle train into Centraal where i think IC trains go right into Centraal so in fact could be quicker.

But the dyanimcs will change if new line is already open - then with a long tunnel under Antwerp Thalys will also stop at Antwerp Centraal, which BTW is one of Europe's grandest grandiose train sheds.

About 2 hrs each way on IC i believe
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Jul 9th, 2007, 12:18 PM
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And if the new line is open i think it would be more manageable - no more than an hour i'd think to Antwerp
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Jul 9th, 2007, 12:47 PM
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The fastest I saw on all the schedules was on Thalys at 1 hr, 59 minutes, but as you pointed out, that goes to the suburban Berchem station.

I think I'll just leave this open and not prebook. If I decide to go to Antwerp, I'll get the ICs on the spur of the moment.
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Jul 9th, 2007, 01:37 PM
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The Thalys still isn't allowed to go high speed in Holland even though the tracks are open - some problem with vibrations or something I believe, so it should make a lot of difference whether you get the Thalys it the IC.
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Jul 9th, 2007, 01:40 PM
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And I believe that when it is all up and running it will only go as far as Amsterdam Buitenveldert not to Amsterdam CS. No idea why, it seems crazy to me but that's the NS for you.
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Jul 9th, 2007, 01:43 PM
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The high speeds tracks haven't opened in Holland yet. The journey on the DIRECT intercity train takes 2 hrs and 1 min. (direct trains leave 26 min. past each hour) which is about the same (or even a little less) as Thalys considering the latter involves a change at Antwerpen Berchem.
Price for intercity: € 57.60 on weekdays (return) ; € 34.60 weekend return (valid Fri-Sun).
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Jul 9th, 2007, 01:51 PM
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Hetis - myriam - any predictions when the high-speed line will open for full speed - i thought it was to be this spring but obviously not - but as i understand it the line is open but not capable of high-speed running yet. Thanks

hetis - you mean the high-speed tracks only go to Buitenveldert - but i suspose the actual high-speed capable trains will limp into Amsterdam C.S.

thanks
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Jul 9th, 2007, 02:22 PM
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Yes, it was supposed to be in May of this year. Now they say 'as of 2008'.
http://www.hslzuid.nl/hsl/uk/hslzuid/
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Jul 10th, 2007, 11:44 AM
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Dank u Myrian - dank u very well

i've read in a rail mag that there are as yet no high-speed train sets so yes there won't be high-speed service till next year.

It's a snafu about the train sets - line done but no trains to realize high-speed capability.
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Jul 10th, 2007, 12:48 PM
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No Pal, the high speed train will terminate at Buitenveldert. But only once that staion is upgraded a bit - 2011 is I think the planning for it.
I don't see the logic in it either....
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Jul 10th, 2007, 12:59 PM
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hetismij - please bear with me - i'm kind of a train geek and wish to know more about this BIZARRE development

I assume Buitenveldert terminus will be after the trains serve Schiphol Airport?

and possible tie in with Station Zuid-WTC for connections to Amsterdam C.S.?

Thalys trains it would seem would go from Schiphol into C.S. as they do now - so you must be talking about the Dutch-Belgian high-speed trains?

anyway incredible and thanks for relaying that.

i supose the new Brussels-antwerp-Buitenveldert trains will require reservations like most other high-speed trains in europe, which i don't like either as i always have a railpass and it's just nice to hop on.

Of course i guess stopping trains will still run the Amsterdam-Den Hague route, etc.

Tot Ziens!
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Jul 10th, 2007, 01:07 PM
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PalenQ, it's about the same situation as in Belgium. Thalys has a stop in Brussel-Zuid (Bruxelles Midi) and in Antwerpen-Berchem instead of in both the central stations. Very regrettable as far as Antwerpen is concerned now that we have this brandnew 3-level station at Centraal.
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Jul 10th, 2007, 01:12 PM
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Myriam - thanks - i thought Thalys would go thru Antwerpen Centraal and then under a tunnel under the port. Thanks for the update and any other info i can glean.

Dank u wel (about my only Dutch along with Tot Ziens and a.u.b.!)
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Jul 13th, 2007, 10:10 AM
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<Price for intercity: € 57.60 on weekdays (return) ; € 34.60 weekend return (valid Fri-Sun).>

at these prices, especially for weekday travel strongly look at the Holland Railpass, which comes in two versions:

3 days unlimited travel in a one month period - a flexipass - 2nd class $90 1st cl $133 under 26 youth $67

57.60 Euros return if doing Amsterdam-Antwerp day trip is about $81 - of course this only takes you to the Dutch frontier, but that is just a few miles from Antwerp so before getting on the train you'd buy a return ticket Dutch border- Antwerpen and back - say $10

So if doing any other day trips from Amsterdam - such as to Delft, Den Hague, Alkmaar, etc. this pass could be a good deal - or just to/from Schiphol airport if not going to use the third day. A youth may find the pass cheaper than the Amsterdam-Antwerp return fares along on week days - though there may be some kind of youth fare Myrian didn't consider.

Or if going onto Brussels or Bruges later then look at the Benelux Pass:
5 days of travel in a one-month period for $171 p.p. on a Saver Pass - two names on one pass or $235 each in 1st class- youth $154

This pass would take you from Amsterdam to Bruges - Brussels - Luxembourg, gateway to the German Mosel, etc.

You'd have to do more than the typical Amsterdam-Bruges-Brussels travel though to make this pay off.

But i love day tripping from Amsterdam - some regional Dutch cities are amongst my favorite in Europe - Aklmaar - especially on cheesey Fridays for the famous Cheese Market - Utrecht - Delft - Den Hague or to Hooge Veluwe and the Van Gogh dominated museum there.

Not sure if these passes are sold in the countries - think not, at least in this form and pricing but not sure.

Marketed in US by RailEurope www.raileurope.com but they will charge $18 for mailing i think. That's one reason i always recommend BETS www.budgeteuropetravel.com for lower mailing fee and much more expertise - actually talk to someone knowledgeable.

Five day pass out of 1 month: $142 or $213 1st class $107 youth
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Jul 13th, 2007, 02:44 PM
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WillTravel,
You could buy a B-Excursion ticket. This comes in three different versions:
1 ) roundtrip Belgium/Amsterdam (on intercity) + Mme. Tussaud + boat trip on the canals and in the harbour
2) roundtrip + boat trip with museum boat
3) roundtrip + Anne Frank House + boat trip on the canals and in the harbour
No need to make reservations for your train ahead.
The prices depend from your point of departure (the distance calculator on the Belgian Rail's website is unfortunately out of order and the explanations of the B-Excursions are only in Dutch as far as I can see).
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Jul 18th, 2007, 07:33 PM
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Myriam, thanks for providing another option.

I saw this tour, and was a bit tempted:
http://ryanair.isango.com/ViewProduc...ServiceID=4012

However, it offers only 2.5 hours in Antwerp and 2.5 hours in Brussels, and also includes a visit to a lace factory.

Actually, when I tried to dummy book it, it turns out it's not available in August anyway, so I guess that's not an option!
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Jul 20th, 2007, 05:15 AM
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I'm glad the tour is not available! I'm not so fond of this kind of tours. It would be such a shame if you came all the way to Antwerp just to see the Cathedral (though it's my favorite landmark in Antwerp) and the Grote Markt.
Make it a long daytrip by train, enjoy the main sites but also stroll along the various cobblestoned squares and narrow streets. Look up the beautiful façades of the houses, have lunch/dinner in one of the numerous restaurants, or a few of our famous beers on a shaded terrace. And soak up the atmosphere of my beautiful city.
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