Train stations to cut window service

Summary

A number of smaller train stations across the country will limit the hours the ticket windows are open, as most passengers are using ticket machines

No job losses

National rail authority NMBS has announced that it will cut the opening hours of staffed ticket windows in 34 stations across the country starting on 2 October. Most of the stations concerned are in Flanders.

Passengers are now more likely to buy their tickets from automatic ticket machines, said a spokesperson. In May, 47% of tickets were bought from a machine, while 42.5% were bought at a ticket window, NMBS said.

The windows will not close entirely, remaining open at the busiest times – generally weekday mornings. Some stations, such as Eeklo and Ronse, will no longer be open at the weekend or weekday afternoons. Others, such as Geraardsbergen and Mol will only close on weekend afternoons.

Knokke, which sees many more passengers in the spring and summer months, will see service all day during high season but only in the mornings the rest of the year.

NMBS said that no one would lose their jobs, though some retiring staff will not be replaced.

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