Eurostar reports improved trading in second quarter

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Eurostar saw sales revenues for the second quarter rise by 1.5% to £232 million over the same period in 2014.

But overall revenues for the first six months of 2015 were down 2% year-on-year as sales were impacted by terrorist attacks in Paris and the closure of Eurotunnel following a lorry fire.

Half year passenger numbers rose by 2% to 5.1 million, including a record 2.8 million in the second quarter, an increase of 3%.

The high speed Channel Tunnel passenger rail service saw a 10% increase in Business Premier passengers compared with the second quarter of last year.

Eurostar reported 88,000 ticket sales for its year-round service between London and Marseille via Lyon and Avignon which started on May 1.

Tickets for Eurostar’s ski services, including a direct service to Bourg St Maurice and a connecting service to Geneva and the Swiss Alps, went on sale last week.

A new fleet of e320 trains, providing increased seating capacity, is in the final stage of testing. They are on schedule to be introduced at the end of the year.

The first newly re-modelled and redesigned train from the current fleet – known as the e300 – will enter commercial service “in the coming weeks”.

The new trains include wi-fi connectivity and advanced passenger information services.

Eurostar chief executive Nicolas Petrovic said: “Over the last three months we have carried more passengers than in any other quarter.

“With demand for our services at an all-time high we are looking forward to the arrival of our new trains.

“The combination of state-of-the-art design, unrivalled comfort and 20% extra seats means that we are well placed to meet the growing demand as passengers increasingly opt for high speed rail over plane.”

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