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Eurostar, the high-speed passenger train service that links the UK and mainland Europe, saw record traveller numbers and record revenues from ticket sales in 2007.
The number of passenger numbers broke the eight million mark for the first time with 8.26m travellers carried ” an increase of 5.1% on the previous year.
Eurostar believes the launch of Eurostar services on High Speed 1 on the 14 November boosted the number of travellers keen to experience 186 mph train services in Britain and the newly-restored St Pancras.
”The launch of Eurostar services on High Speed 1 has begun a new era in short-haul travel between the UK and mainland Europe," said Eurostar chief executive, Richard Brown.
”The impact has been immediate: Eurostar”s faster services, shorter travel times and carbon neutral journeys, are winning over more travellers from short-haul airlines.”
According to Eurostar, the business travel market continued to perform strongly in 2007 with an 11.9% increase in the volume of business ticket sales. And from 2005, this volume has grown 31.4%.
The train operator also believes businesses that want to help tackle climate change are being attracted by the fact that all Eurostar journeys are now carbon neutral ” at no extra cost to travellers.
Brown added, ”We expect to see this growth continue throughout 2008 as the impact of the new through fares from across the UK drives growth in the number of travellers using Eurostar from towns and cities north and south of London.”