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Last Updated: Friday, 2 July, 2004, 10:30 GMT 11:30 UK
Eurostar passenger numbers up 19%
Eurostar Train
Eurostar faces competition from budget airlines
The number of passengers using Eurostar has surged 19%, following the opening of one of the first UK sections of the high-speed rail link, the firm says.

From January to June, over 3,400,000 people used Eurostar between London, Paris and Brussels, an increase of a fifth on the same period in 2003.

Revenue for the period stood at 214m - up 16% on the same months last year - while 89% of trains arrived on time.

Eurostar has been battling to take custom from cut-price airlines.

The company has been keen to point out that journey times have been reduced as a result of the opening in September of the fast link between Folkestone and north Kent.

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