Sleeper trains: a different approach to the value of time?

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Sleeper trains: a different approach to the value of time?

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An ambitious plan to take overnight services through the Channel tunnel reflects a growing interest in suchforms of travel
It is being hailed as the latest evidence of a new dawn for the European sleeper train. Citing changes in attitude wrought by the two crises of the climate emergency and the Covid pandemic, a new night service in 2022 was announced last week between Brussels and Prague, stopping at Amsterdam, Berlin and Dresden, with tickets expected to cost from €60 one way.

But an even more ambitious project could deliver Britons to continental Europe via surely one of the most romantic modes of transport around, Elmer van Buuren, a co-founder of the European Sleeper cooperative, told [...].

“I think there’s also huge potential in eventually running sleeper trains through the Channel tunnel,” said Van Buuren. “Of course, introducing new services through the tunnel is something really ambitious that we are not, at the moment, ready for. [...]

Last summer the UK rail industry’s High Speed Rail Group published a report blaming the overly stringent tunnel regulations for holding back plans for sleepers. They called for the government to modernise the regulations in time for the Channel tunnel’s 30th anniversary in 2024 to take into account the fact passengers are now banned from smoking. [...]

Shares in the European Sleeper cooperative will be available to small investors from next month, Van Buuren said [...].

“The sleeper train is not as quick as a plane but you can board and you don’t need to queue up anywhere,” he said. “You can sit down, relax, read a book, prepare your meeting, [...] have a drink. You go to sleep. You wake up the next morning, you open your curtain and you’re in different worlds. I mean, how great is that? And more and more people are starting to understand that this is actually a different approach to the value of time.” ... e-on-track
Source: The Guardian
Accessed: 2021-04-11
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