Hi, my family will be traveling to Europe in August (London, Netherlands, Belgium and Paris). About a week in each place. Train only by advance purchase for the high speed train journeys, but we won’t buy rail passes as didn’t seem to pencil out.
We will use Eurostar from London to Amsterdam. Then we’ll be taking the train from Amsterdam to Bruges via Antwerp (looks like that is an interesting city to visit for a few hours for a quick stopover). A week later we’ll be taking the train from Bruges to Paris via Brussels for another brief stopover for a few hours in Brussels.
I’m still a bit early to book our trains but if possible would like to use one train ticket booking site for booking of both journeys. Does anyone have any suggestions as to which train booking site is best: Thalys, NS International or Belgian rail? Or another? I looked up some hypothetical dates to check prices on both sites, and both NS and Thalys seem comparable but I didn’t actually click through to buy the tickets. I also understand that for the IC parts of both journeys that there is flexibility in terms of not having to take a specific train (as long as it’s the same day) which will allow us to stopover for a few hours. Is this correct?
Does it matter which train booking site we use in terms of prices or are there extra fees or benefits with one site versus another? Does anyone have suggestions or feedback if they’ve used these sites or travelled these routes via train In August ? I’ve been reading ‘the man in seat 61 ‘website for info but always appreciate hearing RS readers’ feedback too...