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Departures: Tunnel fares

THE Channel tunnel is to be officially opened by the Queen and President Mitterrand on 6 May next year, but it remains unclear what level of service Eurotunnel will be offering passengers next summer. Originally Le Shuttle - as the vehicle between Folkestone and Calais will be known - was intended to operate every 15 minutes, but delays in providing rolling stock may lead to a less frequent service.

Eurotunnel has informed tour operators of its proposed fares, but no public announcement will be made until its brochure is published in October. Le Shuttle fares are expected to match those charged by P&O European Ferries and Stena Sealink on the Dover to Calais route. Also in October, Eurotunnel will launch its own-brand Le Shuttle inclusive holidays, including short breaks and longer packages.

Holidaymakers from the North rate Bruges as the top European city for short breaks, according to North Sea Ferries, which operates daily sailings from Hull to Zeebrugge and Rotterdam. Second favourite is Amsterdam, followed by Rotterdam, Paris, Ostend, Antwerp, The Hague and Arnhem.