Monday 1 February sees the introduction of the long-awaited Brupass XL, a public transport ticket allowing the use of all four networks in Brussels and the surrounding area.
The Brupass XL allows public transport users to travel with the Brussels network Stib, the rail network SNCB, the Flemish public transport network De Lijn and its Walloon counterpart TEC, not only inside the Brussels region itself, but also in surrounding municipalities within a perimeter of 11.5km.
Only Brussels Airport is excluded from the periphery. Transport to and from the airport will not be affected.
The plan behind the new ticket is to encourage more use of public transport by extending the area covered by tickets. At present, the Brussels public transport authority runs several lines to destinations outside of the Brussels region: tram 29 to Groot-Bijgaarden, bus 47 to Vilvoorde, bus 56 to Buda station and so on.
But those are exceptions, and the Stib ticket does not allow travel by De Lijn to Vilvoorde for example, while a train from Groot-Bijgaarden to Brussels requires a train ticket.
The new Brupass XL will change all of that. With the new ticket, any of the four cooperating networks can be used to and from any destination within the periphery. That means up to 1,400 trains a day covering 52 stations, as well as bus, tram and metro links to 2,800 stops.
There is a price, however. A ticket for travel within the Brussels region, now known as the Brupass area, costs €2.40 for one hour, or €15 for a ten-trip refill.
The Brupass XL ticket, meanwhile, will cost €3 for one trip and €20 for ten, although those cannot be purchased on De Lijn vehicles. Otherwise, monthly and annual season tickets will be available, costing €55.50 for a month, €90 for a school ticket lasting a school year, and €583 for a full annual ticket.