Brexit is Ending the Orient Express’s Service In the UK

New delays crossing the English Channel played a part in the decision

Orient Express
Changes are coming to the storied train line.
YASIN AKGUL/AFP via Getty Images

It’s been almost seven years since the Brexit vote fundamentally changed the U.K.’s relationship to the European Union. And, as recent events in Northern Ireland have demonstrated, the impact of that vote is continuing to be felt in ways small and large in specific countries and across the continent. The latest manifestation of the vote’s influence has a very specific remit — namely, the storied Orient Express.

As The Guardian reports, the train will no longer run between London and Folkestone due to the increased challenges of crossing the English Channel in a post-Brexit world.

Travelers looking to travel on the Orient Express will need to find their own way to get to Paris. According to the article, delays that passengers faced crossing the Channel around Easter of this year suggested more travel issues to come. The Guardian also cites Orient Express operator Belmond as expressing some concern over new biometric data requirements that will go into effect in 2024.

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A new measure from the U.K.’s government will require biometric data from all E.U. citizens visiting the U.K., except for citizens of Ireland. According to a Euronews report from late 2022, this plan is slated to go into effect by the end of 2024. It’s not hard to see why the logistics of this would prompt Belmond to rethink some of their routes — but this also feels like the start of a wave of changes as opposed to an isolated incident.


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