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I have read some news that in the Netherlands there are no WCs in some short-distance trains because it would be too expensive.

Is it true that there are urinal bags in these trains? How can I check, if any train has a WC or not?

disposable urinal

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You got some good answers. But I have to defend the choice here, as people are in these trains for not more than half an hour at max. Which is shorter than some people travel by metro, which also generally do not have toilets. These trains stop on average every three to five minutes on most routes. –  Bernhard Feb 13 '13 at 18:16
    
The train network in the Netherlands is in many ways designed as a rapid transit system. No toilets, little or no space for luggage, regular trains along a limited number of mainlines, etc. Once you realize that, a lot of things make more sense. –  Relaxed Jun 24 at 8:40

2 Answers 2

up vote 9 down vote accepted

Yes, there are such a trains. The one and only model which doesn't have toilets is NS Sprinter Lighttrain

enter image description here

They are replacing original Sprinters, which do have toilets. enter image description here

These are commuter trains, thus generally not intended for long distance travel. They do have some quite long routes (eg. Lelystad—The Hague), however for that kind of distances there usually is much faster InterCity as alternative.

As for "urinal bags", it's the answer given by Dutch Railways on how they are going to deal with issue if a passenger would need to go. However I'm under impression it's just legal trick to work around any rules, which would require train to have a toilet, rather than actual practical solution. News on the subject:

Dutch Railways (NS) is to introduce plastic bags on stop trains for people desperate to go to the toilet, the Telegraaf reports.

Passengers on sprinter trains that stop at all stations will be able to ask the conductor for a bag and use the empty driver's cabin. The bags will be easy to close and of bio-degradable plastic.

The NS points out the bags are only available to people who are desperate and cannot wait until the next station, says the Telegraaf.

Travellers and staff have already complained about the lack of facilities on sprinter trains, but transport minister Melanie Schultz van Haegen says they will not be fitted with toilets because it is too expensive.

Passengers' association Rovers says it is pleased with the move but it is only an emergency measure. 'In the end, all sprinters must have toilets,' said a spokesman.

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It's true. But it's not so much the short distance trains as the slow trains (which you typically would take for short distances).

I haven't seen these 'peebags' myself, but apparently, there at least was a plan to introduce them (in Dutch):

http://www.elsevier.nl/Nederland/nieuws/2011/10/NS-Treinen-zonder-wc-krijgen-plaszakken-ELSEVIER318700W/

However, it also appears that this news dates from information leaked (haha) to the press (in Dutch):

http://www.treinreiziger.nl/actueel/binnenland/ns-directeur_niet_blij_met_uitgelekt_plaszakplan-143890

So, in the end, it appears though there are certainly trains without toilets in the Netherlands, in the future, these slow trains will be equipped again with toilets (in Dutch):

http://www.treinreiziger.nl/actueel/binnenland/sprinters_krijgen_in_de_toekomst_toch_een_toilet-144644

I don't think there's an easy way to determine which trains have toilets, except that the rule of thumb is that 'stoptreinen' (frequently stopping trains), 'sprinters' (contrary to what the name might imply, short distance, regularly stopping trains) and 'some regional trains' no longer have toilets (from http://www.treinenmettoiletten.nl/veelgestelde-vragen.html, in Dutch).

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Note that the whole pee-bag discussion was mostly about people with a medical condition. As said these are trains that call all stations, which is nearly always less then 15-20mins apart, with a whole trip being less than an hour. (you go by intercity to a big city, and then with a slow train into the aglo) People in a normal condition won't have to pee in a bag ;-) –  Marco van de Voort Jul 23 at 9:11

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