Stepping into my seat on the Thalys train from Brussels, Belgium to Amsterdam, the Netherlands, I was struck by how it was a world of difference from the LNER Azuma train service from London to Edinburgh.
What was the main difference? Train service was – curt. That’s the best way to say it.
When I questioned what was a particular item on the “Tapas Lunch” serving, the attendant said “I don’t know.” She then looked at the top of the packaging and said “pesto cream”.
This was incorrect. The mass looked like an egg custard. The pesto cream was actually an asparagus topped creamy custard thing that was slightly inedible, due to the high salt content. The cured prosciutto like meat was – um – edible. In fact, the best thing on the plate was the apricot tart.
The whole trip via train was less than two hours. So, it wasn’t excruciating. It was nice to watch Belgium whisk by me, as I whole heartedly looked forward to Amsterdam. Plus, the in train WIFI worked decently. I was able to comfortably relax while en route. However, with only one server working, it left much to be desired in cleanliness and regular drink cart service.
The ticket was worth access to the Thalys Lounge. But, as for en route service – best to be underwhelmed and not expect much. Just enjoy the ride.
In sharp contrast, when I arrived at Amsterdam Centraal, I was shocked by how cosmopolitan, modernized and different it was from the Brussels station. It was a true refreshing breath of fresh air.
In conclusion, taking the train to The Netherlands was the right choice for me. I didn’t want the stress of flying out of Brussels Airport and enjoyed the rolling countryside outside of my window.
However, was it worth the premium service car for the at seat service and price?