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Question about train from Bruges to Den Haag with change in Antwerp

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May 30th, 2013, 11:01 AM
  #1
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Question about train from Bruges to Den Haag with change in Antwerp

If we want to spend a half-day in Antwerp on the way from Bruges to Den Haag, do we buy a train ticket (IC) from Bruges to Den Haag, and just get off in Antwerp and take any IC later in the day from Antwerp to Den Haag? We'll probably leave Bruges around 1 p.m., spend the rest of the afternoon and early evening in Antwerp, and then continue to Den Haag around 8 or 9 p.m.
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May 30th, 2013, 11:23 AM
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The only restriction I have found is that you have to travel on the day for which you booked the ticket - and with the specific passengers you booked the ticket(s) for.
The fare is €37.80 and it says it's the full refundable, non-discounted fare.
As long as you follow the route for which your ticket will be issued (Brugge- Antwerpen- Roosendaal border- Rotterdam- Den Haag) you should be free to use any "non-Thalys" train (IC, IR) which goes on that route.

But maybe you wait before you book until one of the local Dutch or Belgian fodorites confirms this.
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May 30th, 2013, 01:03 PM
  #3
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Thanks Cowboy - that's what I thought, too. We won't buy the tickets until we're there (mid-June).
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May 31st, 2013, 03:05 AM
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You would have to change trains in Antwerp anyway, for your train to Den Haag. As long as it's on the same day, you can take any train, as far as I know.

Antwerp central station is beautiful. Enjoy your afternoon in Antwerp!
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May 31st, 2013, 06:15 AM
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No, you cannot use one ticket and than stop for hours halfway. Belgian NMBS states in their travel-terms a ticket is valid for continuous travel only (Article 13, paragraph 16). Unfortunately these terms are available in Dutch and French only, but you can always give'm a call.

One is allowed half an hour extra traveling time on top of the continuous trip. For example, if you're hungry and decide to halfway leave the train to get a snack, you must be in the next train or one that leaves within 30 minutes.

However, it seems possible to buy a so-called "Via-card", which does allow you to pause and continue on one pre-specified place that is en-route. Ask at the station you are leaving from or by phone.
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May 31st, 2013, 06:38 AM
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Or just buy a ticket Brugge to Antwerpen - regular train, looks like there's a direct train every hour (14,50 euros one way), and then one for Antwerpen-Den Haag.
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May 31st, 2013, 06:53 AM
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Silly enough, that seems it may even be cheaper than a via-ticket. Brugge - Antwerpen costs €14.50, Antwerpen - Den Haag €20. A "via" ticket Brugge - Den Haag with a stop at Antwerpen costs €37.80. Weird...
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May 31st, 2013, 08:12 AM
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Lonely_traveler; you are right about the 'breaking your journey' rule; it does say that on their website. But still, as these tickets are not specific for a certain train, would they check this? How would they know if you are on the Antwerp/Den Haag train in the evening, that your Brugge/Antwerp train was in the morning. They don't stamp your ticket with a time.
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May 31st, 2013, 09:00 AM
  #9
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Thanks both - we'll buy the separate tickets if they're indeed around the same price combined, otherwise I think we'll take the chance, based on Tulips very logical analysis!
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May 31st, 2013, 09:04 AM
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Have a good time! Have you been to Antwerp before?
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Jun 3rd, 2013, 05:26 AM
  #11
 
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@Tulip: you could also try to travel without a ticket, that doesn't make it legal all of a sudden.

Anyway, tickets are stamped on the train using a code. The code describes train, date and conductor. See http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Fi...kendbiljet.png
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Jun 3rd, 2013, 06:23 AM
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How do they do that if you have your ticket on your mobile phone, no paper copy? And if I show my printed-at-home ticket, they don't stamp it either (not in my experience, anyway).
Agree that it's better to buy the 2 separate tickets, or a Via ticket.
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Jun 7th, 2013, 01:00 PM
  #13
 
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When we took the train from Rotterdam to Bruges, we asked if we can stop at Antwerp for a few hours; we were told, yes we can as long as we complete our travel the same day. We noticed that our ticket had "via Antwerp" printed on it; don't know if that makes a difference. Then we took the train from Bruges to Brussels, and we asked if we can stop at Ghent for a few hours. We were told that was ok, but we can not get senior fare if we do that.
By the way, fee is charged in the Netherlands when buying tickets from the sales office (3.50 Euros for Rotterdam to Bruge), but it appears no fee in Belgium.
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