As of October 1st, the iconic red Thalys trains will become part of the Eurostar family, the renowned international high-speed rail service connecting the UK, France, Belgium,

and the Netherlands. The merger between these two prominent high-speed train operators, which began in 2019, is now entering its next phase this year.

The new Eurostar logo has already graced the exterior of the red Thalys trains for several months. While the name Thalys will fade into history, passengers can expect the same appearance of the trains and onboard services to remain unchanged.

Gwendoline Cazenave, CEO of the Eurostar Group, emphasized the continued importance of Brussels in this merger. She stated that not only is the group's headquarters located in the Belgian capital, but "Brussels is also the center of our network, where we are less than two hours from all our destinations."

The merger process between Eurostar and Thalys began four years ago. After facing delays due to the pandemic, Eurostar Group successfully brought the two high-speed train operators under one roof in May of the previous year. The majority of shares are held by the French railway company SNCF, with Belgium's SNCB owning an 18.5 percent stake. The merged group employs approximately 2,200 individuals, boasts a fleet of 50 trains, and operates in five countries: Belgium, Germany, France, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.

As a result of this merger, the Thalys brand, along with its application and website, will be phased out. Travelers can now purchase tickets for train journeys connecting France, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Germany on eurostar.com. Photo by Metrophil, Wikimedia commons.