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Can anyone help with transportation?

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Ft. Worth
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Can anyone help with transportation?

On January 8, I will be traveling with a group of 35 students to Brussels. I have reviewed everything I can find on metro/train tand tram. Wondering if anyone can help me make sure I understand. We need to travel from Bruxelles Centraal to Diegem and back in the morning and then Bruxelles Centraal to Vorst-Oost in the afternoon. My research says we should take the train. The Journey Planner indicates that the first journey requires a 5E ticket and the second journey requires a 6E. I believe they are indicating that it is a "Jump" ticket.

I don't understand if these tickets are issued in advance or if we can buy them at the station. What type ticket do we need? Is a 5E Jump (1-day ticket) the correct ticket even though Diegem is a bit further? Can one ticket be used for both journeys in the same day? Can it be purchased at the station the day before or the day of?

Any help would be appreciated. It's always best to have every detail down when 35 college students are following behind.

Thank you!!!

Antwerp, Belgium
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1. Re: Can anyone help with transportation?

I just looked it up for you and unfortunately Diegem is just outside the Brussels zone so you can't use the Jump card for taking the train there.

It would be possible using a Key Card for going to Diegem from Brussels Centraal. More info here belgianrail.be/en/…key-card.aspx You could then use a Jump card for going to Vorst.

Both of these cards are sold in the stations. The Key Card at both the machines and the counters, the Jump Card only at the counters.

Antwerp, Belgium
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2. Re: Can anyone help with transportation?

I should also mention that buses 270 -271 -272 all go to Diegem (or pass there on the way to the airport) and leave from Brussels City centre so that could also be an option.

Ft. Worth
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3. Re: Can anyone help with transportation?

Sorry if this posts twice but I my reply just disappeared so I am starting over!

First, thanks so much for the information. REALLY HELPFUL! I think i'm strating to understand. Unfortunately, I don't have time to figure this out when I get there as our events start quickly.

I've been back out to the website - could you verify that I have it right?

When we arrive at Centraal, the students can purchase a Keycard directly from a machine or the counter to be used the next day. (Doesn't expire) Five students could get together and use the same one for Diegen (5 students * outbound/return). They simply write each leg of the trip on the keycard on the lines provided before getting on the train.

I hope the ticket machines are also in English or does it say "Key" and "Jump"?

They could also use a Key Card for Voorst which would be less expensive than a Jump if that is the only other trip they do that day. The Jump can also be purchased from a machine right before the trip without any hassle. It would give them unlimited rides in central brussels for that day. The Jump must be validated before the first use and is good only for that same day.

Either way, we simply go to the train platform and board the train. (I hope the route number is posted??) Reserved seats will be indicated and we can take any open seat?

Do I sound like I know what I am doing? Can I convince my students? THANKS SO MUCH!

Brussels, Belgium
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4. Re: Can anyone help with transportation?

1) The students can purchase keycards (these are 10-trip cards so they need 7 to cover 35x2 trips) for Bruxelles-Central-Diegem and Diegem-Bruxelles-Central; but I believe not from a machine. Unless they have different machines at Gare centrale from the ones at the station I use, you can only use the Belgian Railways machines if you have a local debit card, which they won't have. Therefore they would have to purchase key cards from the ticket office at Gare centrale.

2) Key cards are valid for 6 months, but each line is valid only for the date indicated when the user fills this in. Indeed they can use 1 between 5, for 2 trips each, writing in each single trip as they use it.

3) As far as I recall, the Belgian Railways ticket machines - which sell key cards and JUMP cards - are in French, Dutch, German and English but as mentioned I don't think they take cash or credit cards. GO machines, which belong to STIB and sell JUMP tickets (interchangeable between Belgian Railways and buses, trams and metro operated by STIB, the Brussels city transport system), but not key cards (valid only on railway trains), on the other hand, DO take cash.

4) NO, the JUMP ticket does not give "unlimited rides in central Brussels for that day" (of validation)!!! Just like 1 line on a key card, it is valid for ONE journey per person, on the date in question. However, that journey from A to B can be by any combination of train (within the Brussels metropolitan area), bus, tram and/or metro. It is NOT a day pass for travelling around the city, it merely permits connectiions from e.g. train to bus to complete a single journey! The JUMP card has to be validated in an orange machine before boarding the train/bus/tram/metro at departure point A, and is then valid for 60 minutes, during which any number of changes can be made.

5) Key Card (again, 7 key cards if they have to get back) can indeed be used to travel by train from Bruxelles-Central to Forest but this would NOT be less expensive than a JUMP card! At €20, a 10-trip key card would be the same price as 10 INDIVIDUAL JUMP cards (€2), so MORE expensive than a 10-trip JUMP card (€13) - which operates like a key card except that instead of writing in each trip, it has to be stamped once for each person in the orange validating machine.

6) Yes of course, to catch a train you go to the train platform indicated on the departure board/ yellow timetable boards/ overhead monitors and board the relevant train for your destination. "Route numbers" are not posted on railway trains/platforms: the DESTINATION is. Reserved seats will not be indicated because it is not possible to reserve seats on domestic trains (except for groups of 15+ which you are unlikely to encounter on these routes)! So yes, any unoccupied seats are available for use.

Edited: 06 December 2012, 19:50
Ft. Worth
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5. Re: Can anyone help with transportation?

Thank you for the detailed response. I think I am ready!

6. Re: Can anyone help with transportation?

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