Flemish Tourism Minister comes out against extra trains to the Coast
Saturday, 20 March 2021
Busy trains debark at Ostend in February
Flemish Tourism Minister Zuhal Demir has come out against the idea of additional trains to the Belgian coast.
“Since nothing is open, I really wonder what citizens can go there to do,” she commented during an interview with the VRT. “If the terraces are not open, there is nowhere for you to go to the toilets.”
Several members of Demir’s party, the Flemish rightwing N-VA, have repeatedly called for terraces to be reopened for the Easter holidays, which will start on Saturday 3 April.
This would enable people to be outdoors, rather than form compact groups in parks and on the Coast, according to the N-VA.
On Friday evening, Belgium’s Consultative Committee announced that from Saturday 3 April, the number of seats on trains to tourist destinations (such as the coast) will be limited.
From then on, passengers (except for children under 12) can only sit in window seats on trains, during weekends and holidays.
The measure will reduce the capacity of the trains during traditionally busy days and periods, but it also means that more trains will be needed to carry the same number of people.