Eurostar supports the OFT ruling on hidden card charges

28 Jun 2011

28 June 2011: Eurostar, the high-speed passenger service linking the UK and mainland Europe, has announced its support for the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) decision today to call for the law to be updated to stop consumers being surcharged, when buying goods and services with any debit card.

The OFT has announced it will uphold a super complaint submitted by Which?, the consumer group on unfair credit and debit card surcharges. The watchdog has told passenger travel companies to change misleading debit and credit card surcharging practices or face enforcement action under consumer protection laws.

Nick Mercer, Commercial Director for Eurostar comments: "This is a welcome decision by the OFT, companies should not a charge a surcharge for debit card bookings and they must be fully transparent about any credit card surcharges they apply. At Eurostar, we have always looked to be completely transparent and we have never charged to use debit cards. Consumers must be able to shop around and find the best deals and it's our responsibility as businesses to make this as quick and easy as possible for them."

All Eurostar bookings made by debit card are free of charge. Eurostar charges a £4 fee for credit card bookings, which goes some way towards offsetting the costs charged by credit card companies. This fee is only applied to credit card transactions over £30.

For more information about Eurostar visit www.eurostar.com or call 03448 224 777.

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About Eurostar
1. Eurostar is the high-speed train service linking St Pancras International, Ebbsfleet International, Ashford International, Paris, Brussels, Lille, Calais, Disneyland Resort Paris, Avignon and the French Alps.

2. Eurostar was established in 1994 as a partnership between three railway companies: SNCF, SNCB and LCR (London and Continental Railways). On 1 September 2010, Eurostar became a single, unified corporate entity owned by three shareholders: SNCF, SNCB and LCR.

3. The current Eurostar train was first introduced into service in 1994 carrying 750 passengers and operating at speeds of up to 300kph. Since then, the fleet of 28 trains has carried more than 115 million passengers between London and the Continent. Following their refurbishment these trains will continue to form a core part of the Eurostar fleet.

4. Eurostar is a founder member of Railteam, a partnership between Europe's leading high-speed train operators that is developing simpler ways to book and travel on the fast-expanding, European high-speed rail network.

5. Eurostar and Eurotunnel are entirely separate companies. Eurostar operates high-speed passenger trains, while Eurotunnel operates vehicle shuttle services and the Channel Tunnel itself. Eurostar is Eurotunnel's biggest customer.

For more information:

Eurostar Press Office
020 7843 5500
press.office@eurostar.co.uk