European travel buyers’ network BT4Europe has joined the call for the European Union to create a strategy for “developing a comprehensive night train network”.
BT4Europe has signed a joint letter, alongside government ministers from several countries, Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) and industry groups, which is urging action from the European Commission to improve night train services across the EU.
“Night trains are experiencing a revival throughout Europe, driven by popular demand for a climate-friendly alternative travel option,” says the letter. “European institutions are increasingly recognising the potential of night trains, though important obstacles remain. We therefore urge you to present a European night train strategy.”
BT4Europe chair Patrick Diemer also highlighted the “huge opportunity” in Europe to shift long-distance business travel from the road and skies to the rails.
But he also stressed the hurdles that remain to achieving this modal shift, which would help to make business trips more sustainable and reduce emissions.
Diemer called for a “comprehensive network” of night trains linking the major European business hubs, as well as fully integrated booking, payment and ticketing processes covering different modes of transport. He added this should be backed up by end-to-end passenger rights.
“Business travel is a cornerstone of economic activity across Europe, playing a vital role for corporations, public institutions and millions of business travellers. It is therefore absolutely key to the viability of a revitalised European night train network,” concluded Diemer.
“We are proud to be working with our partners to lead the call for a European Strategy for developing a comprehensive night train network that would promote the goals of the European Green Deal.
“A comprehensive night train network in Europe can help us reduce the environmental footprint of business travel and realise a greener, more interconnected and prosperous Europe.”
Last week, a group of the Swedish Business Travel Association’s travel buyer members took an overnight train to the GBTA Europe convention in Hamburg instead of flying. Read about this and other developments in BTN Europe’s interview with SBTA general manager Fredrik Hermelin.
Source: Business Travel News Europe