Brussels to Gelsenkichen. - henry k
The last minute plan is for my son and a friend is to go ( with tickets) and watch the match at Gelsenkichen.

The plan is to go by Eurostar to Brussels, hiring a car a driving the rest of the way.
He has been advised by locals, while working in Brussels, that they all drive east cos the trains are not a good option. The Eurostar part of the trip is also fixed.

So.

1. Advice on car hire from Brussels.

2. Best route, alternative routes. Keep it simple as he is a poor navigator.

3. He has TomTom 500? but not sure if it covers his route. Which maps?

4. IIRC They have never driven on the continent. I cannot advise them.

5. Any other info they should be aware of.

6. Car parking somewhere? Local train in from nearby?

Any help at such short notice would be appreciated.
Brussels to Gelsenkichen. - mlj
I would go train from Brussels. Look at Deutsche-bahn.co.uk , lots of special offers designed for football fans. Certainly cheaper than carhire. Train direct to Gelsenkirchen in less than 3 hours. Got to be quicker than finding the car hire office, getting on to the Belgian motorway network.

I would not recommend Brussels and the Belgian network (particularly if navigating the antwerp ring) to someone driving on the continent for the first time.
Brussels to Gelsenkichen. - Smileyman
Mapping software will help.

www.viamichelin.co.uk/

It says 250km. However, the Eurostar stops in the city centre, so messing around finding the car hire office, finding your way to the motorway, then parking and commuting to the stadium in Germany may be 'fun' - try to train it from Brussels and enjoy the journey.

Don't forget the return journey too ... you may be pleased to be able sleep on the train!

Brussels to Gelsenkichen. - henry k
It says 250km. However, the Eurostar stops in the city centre, so messing around finding the car hire office, finding your way to the motorway, then parking and commuting to the stadium in Germany may be 'fun' -


>>Try to train it from Brussels and enjoy the journey.


An update.
Downloaded a couple of TomTom city maps. and printed off some Auto route extracts.
He took the Eurostar To Brusells and stayed in a good central hotel ( all free on frequent travel type points.)
Collected car ready for early Sat morning departure.
Routed via Antwerp ring road and the East to Dortmund.
Left the car at the Dortmund Hotel for easy parking and caught the train to Gelsenkichen.
90 minutes now to get his seat and soak up the atmosphere!!!

All went smoothly to this point then it went pear shape.

>>Try to train it from Brussels and enjoy the journey.

Well the stadium is miles out of town and surrounded by car parks.
Google earth shows it clearly

NO transport from station to stadium. An absolute shambles.
He arrived at the stadium with minutes to spare.
He showed me an online video, taken by an ex footballer, of his experience of the trip. He too complained about the chaos and only just made the kick off after asimilar long walk.

I did not see mentioned in the press any reports of this awful organisation!!!

Don't forget the return journey too ... you may be pleased to be able sleep on the train!


They night stopped in Dortmund to make the Sun morning trip easy.

In spite of German inefficiency the match was a super experieice.
Brussels to Gelsenkichen. - Manatee
Please forgive me for chatting with Henry...

>>In spite of German inefficiency the match was a super experieice.

There is a tram station right outside Gelsenkirchen train station - perhaps your son was unable to get on, certainly after they passed through the town centre en route to the ground they were fully packed and not stopping about 2 hours before the game.

I shared a taxi from Dusseldorf to Gelsenkirchen, arriving in the town centre at midday. This seemed like a good plan but many people, including me, ended up hoofing 7km from the centre to the ground. The train station is even further away.

There was a mega jam afterwards - an hour after leaving the ground the traffic back into town was almost stationary, and I easily walked faster despite the blisters picked up on the route march out. Eventually got on a tram nearer the centre and got a train back to Dusseldorf (free for match ticketholders).

I think Gelsenkirchen was just overwhelmed by numbers - an estimated 100,000 people in a town of maybe 250,000. A larger fleet of buses would probably just have made a bigger traffic jam.

Great stadium though - and slightly cooler inside than out, thanks to the roof. which was closed throughout the game.
 

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