Rail Travel in Europe

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Strike slows German rail network

    October 05 2007 at 01:34PM

Berlin - A strike by German train drivers during the morning rush hour caused chaos on Friday as their union warned it would call a wider stoppage unless the state-run rail operator makes an improved pay offer.

The GDL union, which represents 8 000 drivers, called on its members to stop work between 8am and 11am (0600 GMT and 0900 GMT).

European rail to compete with airlines

BRUSSELS, Belgium - London to Frankfurt by train? It's possible, it can be as fast and as easy as flying and it's far better for the environment, a group of European high-speed rail companies claimed Monday.

Eurostar, Germany's Deutsche Bahn AG and France's SNCF joined Dutch, Austrian, Swiss and Belgian train companies to form a rail alliance, Railteam, that aims to make international train bookings far easier and simpler by building a single online reservation system.

They want to attract at least 25 million travelers by 2010 — 10 million more than now — taking a 5 percent chunk out of the short-haul airline market by promoting four-hour business trips and up to six-hour leisurThey said rail travel can and will compete with low-fare airlines such as Ryanair and easyJet that have revolutionized European travel by encouraging people to fly more often and take weekend trips away.

"People can go anywhere on the network and get there more quickly than air. We do believe people will choose to make those journey because it's more environmentally friendly," said Eurostar Chief Executive Richard Brown.

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Plans for rail capital of north

MANCHESTER could become the rail capital of the north in a £2bn expansion of Piccadilly Station.
Transport minister Rosie Winterton surprised even people lobbying for the investment when she hastily arranged an official visit to the station to announce that the government had ordered a feasibility study into improving Piccadilly. It will enable more and faster trains to operate across the north, particularly key services between Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Newcastle.

 

'Rail firms exploit tax loophole

Rail frms have been accused of sitting on £1.3 billion of unpaid tax and of using a loophole to fund massive increases in dividend payouts to shareholders.

The Rail Maritime and Transport (RMT) union claimed that almost half the £1.5 billion in dividends paid out in the last five years by rail and rolling stock firms had been funded by unpaid tax.

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