Railteam reports on achievements and articulates priorities going forward

26 Nov 2009

At a press conference at Brussels Midi International station today, Railteam, the alliance of the main seven high speed rail operators in Europe, reported on its customer-focused achievements over the last two and a half years and articulated its priorities going forward.
With the Copenhagen conference on climate change and the opening-up of competition on international rail services coming up, this is the optimal time for Railteam to demonstrate the progress it has made in shifting travellers from air and road to high-speed rail and the contribution it is making to sustainable travel across Europe.
Since its launch in July 2007, Railteam has made significant progress in improving awareness of the pan-European high-speed rail network, and in enhancing the quality of the travel experience on this network. During this time it has undertaken extensive customer research which has formed the basis of a programme of improvements.
The research, which explored the key priorities for customers, showed that travellers' primary concerns are clear on-board communication and real-time information to make connections smooth and easy, easier access to fare and schedule information, and a wider choice of destinations and frequencies.
In addition to simplifying connections, Railteam has delivered a number of key improvements including:
a "hop on the next train" facility which greatly improves service continuity in the case of disrupted transfers in the five main "hub" stations: Brussels-Midi, Lille Europe, Cologne, Frankfurt and Stuttgartenhanced schedule data through downloadable mobile applications and an enhanced website (railteam.eu)multilingual assistance at more than 30 other stations on the Railteam networkaccess to all Railteam members' lounges for frequent travellersthrough fares offered by a number of pairs of members
European high speed rail travel in 2020
Looking ahead, a recent study* commissioned by Railteam forecast that by 2020 the number of international high speed rail journeys on the Railteam network will have increased by at least 50 per cent, with 68 million international trips being made per year compared with 45 million made in 2007.
Working on the basis that a series of initiatives spearheaded by Railteam are implemented over the coming years, this baseline figure could grow by another 10 per cent every year from 2020. Given that by choosing high speed rail over plane or car, travellers can reduce their carbon emissions by up to 90 per cent, this growth in high speed rail journeys would result in a reduction of more than 170 million tons of carbon emissions per year.
Richard Brown, President of Railteam, said:
"Since launch two years ago, we have made great strides in improving the rail travel experience for passengers across Europe. At a time when climate changes and concerns about the environment are top of mind, our members are constantly looking for new ways of improving our environmental efficiency and ensuring that we continue to provide consumers with a sustainable alternative to other forms of travel."
Note to editors:
Railteam is an alliance between Europe's leading high-speed rail operators, currently Deutsche Bahn (Germany), SNCF (France), Eurostar (UK, France and Belgium), NS Hispeed (Netherlands), ÖBB (Austria), SBB (Switzerland) and SNCB (Belgium), as well as three of their high-speed subsidiaries Thalys, Lyria and Alleo.
For more information, visit http://www.railteam.eu
* The Railteam Network 2020 study was carried out in 2008-09 by Intraplan Consult and SMA Partner AG under the direction of a workgroup made of Railteam members experts. The purpose of the study was first to determine a 2020 baseline for transport demand and its modal split on Railteam's perimeter based on extrapolating 2007 figures jointly compiled from the members proprietary data and already programmed changes in infrastructure (new high-speed lines), and to then assess what growth above the baseline could be generated through further concerted optimization actions by the present and future Railteam partners, in areas such as new direct services, coordination of schedules for better connections, frequency changes, possible additional infrastructure enhancements, and regulatory changes.
Press contacts:
DB Bahn:Jürgen Kornmann: +49 (0) 30 297 60010presse@deutschebahn.com
TGV:Agnès Grisoglio: +33 (1) 53 25 78 34agnes.grisoglio@sncf.fr
SNCB:Philippe Tomberg: +32 (2) 528 84 83Jochem Goovaerts: +32 (2) 528 23 14pers@nmbs.be
NS Hispeed:Ronald Stevens: +31 (30) 235 70 70ronald.stevens@ns.nl
Rose Teunissen: +31 (6) 558 46 413persvoorlichting@nshispeed.nl
ÖBB:Thomas Berger: +43 (1) 93000 44277thomas.berger@oebb.at
SBB:Service de presse: +41 51 220 41 11press@sbb.ch
Eurostar:Press OfficeUK: +44 207 843 55 00Continent : +32 (2) 641 58 85press.office@eurostar.co.uk
Thalys:Patricia Baars: +32 (2) 504 05 99press@thalys.com
TGV Lyria:Monica Hug: +33 (1) 45 67 56 76monica.hug@wanadoo.fr
For more information contact:
Eurostar Press OfficeEurostart:0044 (0)20 7843 5500e:press.office@eurostar.co.uk