At this moment I’m in a train in first class of a Thalys high-speed train to Amsterdam. As a regular train traveler, first class is that majestic far-away land of free food, WiFi and leg-space. Perks everyone dreams of, but few actually are willing to plunk down the extra dough.
Of course, there is a difference in first and second class on long journeys. With food and drinks ‘complementary’ (aka: added in the price), it’s one cost you don’t have to account for.
Another great thing is that you are addressed as Sir and Madam, instead of ‘get on the train you cheap hippy’.
When I got the confirmation I would be traveling in first class from Brussels to Amsterdam, I thought for a minute to get an upgrade to first class for my connection to Brussels.
However, the price is quite hefty, considering that if there is a delay, you will still arrive at the same time with all others paying less than you. And local trains don’t offer anything extra except a roomier seat. WiFi on Belgian trains are non-existent, all catering services got canceled years ago, and if something happens (and it will), you’re probably cut out of the power you are using to do something productive.
So as long as I’m paying this all myself, second class will do just fine.
But still, the food was great.