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Eurostar could collapse ‘within weeks’ without government support

© hpgruesen

Eurostar is said to be on the verge of collapse, with passenger numbers for its services having dropped 95% in the past year due to cross-border restrictions between the UK and France.

The problem is now exacerbated by a strict national lockdown in both countries, causing passenger numbers to remain at record lows and restricting travel.

With all travel corridors closed since this morning, any international travellers will have to take a Covid test with a negative result to be able to travel to Britain.

For Eurostar and other passenger services including airlines and taxis, the further restrictions are putting services on the verge of collapse.

Eurostar’s vital link to Europe connects London to Paris, Brussels and Amsterdam, as well as other big cities, but that could soon end.

While Eurostar is majority-owned by France’s SNCF, the company has been seeking government assistance and emergency loans to keep it afloat.

Covid restrictions are due to remain in force until the spring at the earliest, with France and the UK requiring tests on either side of the border – making it a fight for survival for Eurostar as passenger numbers are forecast to remain low well until the summer.

Having carried more than 11 million passengers in 2019 alone, Eurostar currently employs 1200 people in the UK, with an additional 1500 jobs supported through its supply chain.