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In Europe, ground transportation bookings are up significantly

In an apparent desire to secure more reliable means of long-distance travel, people traveling in Europe are more often riding its famous high-speed rails, instead of booking with an airline, a post to www.eurotunnel.com announced Wednesday.  Online reservations recorded by www.eurotunnel.com, where travelers can book travel through the famous Channel Tunnel, have risen 30 percent.  Traffic to www.eurotunnel.com has increased 50 percent.  In addition, the U.K. website www.breakingtravelnews.com speculates that expectation of a series of strikes by the union representing cabin crew employees of British Airways, is another factor that has driven up the quantity of bookings recorded by www.eurotunnel.com, and amount of traffic riding the high-speed rails in general, in recent weeks.

The websites www.eurotunnel.com and www.raileurope.com both offer multiple classes of ticket with varying cancellation flexibility options.  And a representative of Eurotunnel pointed out that the surge is noticeable in all ticket classes, from economy to first class.  Eurotunnel believes that both business and leisure travelers on intra-European itineraries are making the jump, at least temporarily, from airlines to ground transportation.

No charts or graphs of the data were posted onto either www.eurotunnel.com or www.breakingtravelnews.com at the time of this post.  It is not clear if www.eurotunnel.com website traffic that has increased 50 percent is in terms of hits to the website, or unique visitors to the website, or something else altogether.  The report is also not clear on what previous data the increases are relative to.  Moreover, no corresponding decrease in air travel bookings was noted by the report.

The Channel Tunnel, linking the county of Kent, in England (United Kingdom) to the department of Pas-de-Calais in France, opened ceremonially in the spring of 1994, and accommodated its first passengers in autumn of that year.  The Tunnel is owned by Eurotunnel.  Eurotunnel and Eurostar operate trains through the English Channel, along the underwater route, which is 31 miles long.

related stories

The Unite strikes against British Airways are back on (May 21, 2010)

Unite is barred from going forward with BA strike action (May 18, 2010)

Airlines now criticizing British models of predicted ash movement (May 17, 2010)

Volcanoes in Iceland could affect aviation for decades  (May 17, 2010)

Heathrow and Gatwick closed as of 1:00 A.M. local time Monday (May 16, 2010)

British Airways has released its contingency plan for the first strike (May 15, 2010)

Keflavík Airport is closed again due to volcanic ash (May 14, 2010)

Eyjafjallajökull damage report, and spectacular new video (May 13, 2010)

British Airways and cabin crew union are trying to avert strikes (May 12, 2010)

Keflavík and others might close temporarily tomorrow (May 7, 2010)

The spread of volcanic ash from Eyjafjallajökull over time (May 4, 2010)

original stories

Ash Cloud: Passengers move to more reliable modes of transport (www.eurotunnel.com)

Ash crisis leads to 30 percent surge in Eurotunnel bookings (www.breakingtravelnews.com)

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