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The Bargain Corner

Benelux Travel Passes

April 12, 1987|JACK ADLER

The Benelux countries--Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg--have a rail pass good for travel within all three. In addition, Belgium and the Netherlands have rail passes good within their own borders.

The Benelux Tourrail pass is good until Sept. 15. It allows five days of travel during a 17-week period, so you can break your journey at any point.

This pass must be bought in either of the three countries, but the amount of dollars you pay can vary from nation to nation, depending on the current exchange rate. Figure around $90 first-class if you're 26 and over, and $60 second-class; from ages 12 to 26, about $65 and $43, and for children 6 to 12, $45 and $30.

The Belgian Tourrail pass is valid to Sept. 30, then from Dec. 15 to 30. You can buy passes allowing either five or eight days of travel within a 16-day period.

Under the five-day program, rates for persons 26 and over are $56 first-class and $37 second-class; for 12-26, $42 and $28, and 6-12, $28 and $19. If you select the eight-day program the rates are $74, $55 and $37 for the same age brackets first-class, and $29, $37 and $25 second-class.

A 16-day card, valid all year, costs $105 first-class and $70 second-class. This pass is for use on a consecutive 16-day basis.

You can also buy a half-fare card that entitles you to a 50% discount on all rail travel in Belgium for 30 days. The cost is $18 for first-class, $12 second-class.

These Belgian rail passes can only be bought in Belgium. For more information, contact the Belgian National Tourist Office, 745 Fifth Ave., New York 10151, phone (212) 758-8130.

The Dutch rail pass can be bought for three days for $51 first-class and $34 second-class. Seven-day passes are $69.50 and $47. Starting this year these passes can be bought in the United States as well as Holland.

You can also get a Town/Country Rover pass good for travel on all urban and regional trains, subways and buses. The cost is about $4 for three days and $8.50 for seven days.

Another possibility is a one-day rail pass providing unlimited second-class travel throughout Holland. The price for one person is $26, for a couple, $36.

Contact the Netherlands Board of Tourism at (213) 678-8802.

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