Belgium by Train
Find out about travelling on Belgium's rail transport network including domestic and international trains, and local trams and metro services...
Rail transport in Belgium is managed by SNCB/NMBS (Société Nationale des Chemins de fer Belges/Nationale Maatschappij der Belgische Spoorwegen), which runs both national and international services. The train network has several high speed lines which provide fast connections to Lille, Paris, London, the Netherlands and Germany. The SNCB/NMBS website, which is available in English, includes a route planner, timetables and ticket booking services. The company offers a variety of railcards to reduce the cost of travelling for students, young people and frequent travellers.
- SNCB/NMBS Information
Tel: 02 528 28 28
Open: 07:00–21:30 daily
- For timetables and to book online: Click here
International train services
SNCB/NMBS is involved in operating a number of fast international train services:
- Thalys connects Brussels Midi station with Paris, the Netherlands and Germany. There are extra seasonal services; to the ski resorts of the French Alps in winter and to the south of France in summer. The company offers a number of different fares to suit the needs of all travellers. To find out more about Thalys or book tickets: Click here
- Eurostar runs high speed international train links between Brussels Midi station and stations in France and the United Kingdom. For more information on routes, timetables and tickets: Click here
- The TGV connects Brussels with cities throughout France. Connections are possible to the rest of France and beyond. Tickets can be purchased online.
- The InterCity Express (ICE) is a high speed service between Brussels or Liège and Frankfurt, Frankfurt Airport, Cologne and Aachen. For more information or to book tickets: Click here
- Fyra is a high speed train service linking Brussels and Amsterdam. For more information: Click here
Fares, railcards and discounts
- To calculate the fare for a journey: Click here
- The SNCB fares page provides information on all special tickets, passes and discounts available for different categories of passenger. There is also a wide range of multi-trip cards and passes for frequent travellers.
- For comprehensive information about the different railcards available, how to apply and what to do in case of a lost railcard: Click here
Tickets and reservations
Domestic tickets are sold at railway stations. International tickets may be bought via the Internet, telephone, at railway stations and at certain travel agents.
- For further information: Click here
All high-speed and sleeper trains must be booked in advance for cheap fares, either online or using a travel agency.
Note: Rail tickets are inspected on board. Fines are levied for travelling without a ticket.
Pets on trains
Some pets can be taken on trains in Belgium. Cats and small dogs can often travel free or for a small charge, if kept in a cage or basket. Dogs should be muzzled and on a lead; they travel to reduced price. Guide dogs and other assistance dogs can travel free of charge.
- For more information on rules on different train services: Click here
Bikes on trains
Bikes can be taken on Belgian trains, although the number of spaces available depends on the type of train. It is advisable to travel at off-peak times. Different rules apply to different train services.
- For more information: Click here
Services for disabled passengers
The SNCB/NMBS provides services on trains and at stations to help passengers with reduced mobility.
- For comprehensive information on these services: Click here
In the last four months of pregnancy, expectant mothers can travel in first class on a second-class ticket. A medical certificate stating the due date may be required for this.
- For more information: Click here
Tram and Metro Services
In addition to these train services, some of Belgium's cities have tram or metro services:
- Brussels Metro (operated by STIB)
- Antwerp Prémétro (operated by De Lijn)
- Charleroi Métro Léger (operated by TEC)
- Ghent Tram (operated by De Lijn)
- De Kusttram (operated by De Lijn)