Practical information

Whilst much of the pleasure of travel comes from discovering particularly the unexpected, it is still useful and reassuring to obtain information on the practical aspects of the city where you will be staying prior to your stay : How far is it to reach a certain place? Which are the official holidays? Which is the best means of transport to visit?

These are questions for which you will find the answers here.

Arriving in Brussels by plane

If your hotel is close to the airport free shuttle service to nearby hotels is available. To get to Brussels centre by taxi it will cost €35. Click here for more information on taxis.

For the express train (get off at Central Station if you want to go to the city centre) on level -1 you will be charged €2.40. Buses pass by the NATO headquarters and through the European district.

Located 12 kms from Brussels centre, Brussels Airport offers within its arrival hall the main car rental companies. You can find all the details to get from/to Brussels Airport, including by bike or on foot ... through the site of the airport.

Arriving in Brussels by train

Brussels is accessible by train from all the major European cities. The Thalys is the Amsterdam / Cologne-Brussels-Paris line, the Eurostar is the London line via the Channel Tunnel.

You can easily reach the centre of Brussels by Taxi. They are located just outside the station and can drop you off in the city centre for around €25.

By bus or tram, take the stop in the covered street.

By Metro, the station is directly connected to the network, which frequently serves the city centre and the periphery of Brussels as well as Belgian and international railway networks, including the Eurostar.

To get away from Brussels to one of these destinations or to discover Belgium by train, visit the website of the national company, SNCB.

Arriving in Brussels by car

To return to the city from Luxembourg / Namur through the E411, from Paris / Mons, Amsterdam / Antwerp through the E19, from Lille / Gent through the E40 or Cologne / Liège through the E40, avoid the rush hour traffic from 7.30 am to 9.00 am and from 5.00 to 7.00 pm.

The queues of commuters will prolong your travel time by more than 1 hour. The "Ring", or the peripheral boulevard, will enable you to go round the city without entering it – a good way to reach a precise destination. The traffic is usually quite dense so definitely avoid peak hours.

Distances between Brussels areas

Although this is the best, the most economical and the most environmentally friendly way, walking the avenues and the streets of a city becomes tiring. Especially since a kilometre downhill is not the same as a kilometre uphill!

So, to spare your legs, check before your stroll if what you intend to visit is on "Bas de la ville" or on "Haut de la ville". As an example, Grand Place is on "Bas de la ville" and avenue Louise on "Haut de la ville".

n Security

Brussels is a relatively safe city. Compared with other European cities, the urbanism of Brussels makes comparisons difficult, if not to say impossible. For example, Paris only has statistics on its inner city, when however crime is primarily found in the suburbs.

Petty crime (theft of handbags, pickpocket) is unfortunately present in Brussels and so the usual security measures (together with common sense) apply: handbags are to be kept closed, do not carry your passport (only keep a copy), minimum cash, and at night avoid sensitive areas, such as near stations.

If you encounter a problem or if you witness an incident / accident, the phone numbers below are free. Make a note of them as they might get helpful.

  • Accident or assault : 112. Free
  • Police : 101. Free
  • Ambulance or fire-engine : 100. Free
  • SOS Doctor Brussels Number : 02 513 02 02 home 7d/7d - 24/24

Prostitution is also present in the capital of Europe: a recent study estimated 3,900 prostitutes, without including the ‘high end’ ones such as the escorts found available online.

The red light district of Brussels, with its bars and squares, is located in the commune of Schaerbeek and has about sixty establishments.


The power supply, as in all the European cities, is 220-240 V. If necessary, power adapters will be provided at good hotels.

Office hours

The offices of the City of Brussels are located on Boulevard Anspach, 6, 2nd Floor, 1000 Brussels.

Tel. : +32(0)2 279 35 60

Fax: +32(0)2 279 35 69

Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 8.30 am to 1.00 pm (distribution of tickets from 8.15 am to 12.30 pm) and from 2.00 to 3.30 pm (distribution of tickets from 1.45 to 3.00 pm), and Thursday from 4.30 pm to 6.30 pm (distribution of tickets from 4.00 to 6.00 pm).

Phoneline: Monday to Friday from 8.30 am to 3.30 pm without interruption.

Office opening hours are generally Monday to Friday from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm. Some banks are open on Saturday mornings from 9.00 am to 12.00 pm


Shops are open from Saturday to Saturday, generally from 10.00 am to 6.00 pm, but they are becoming more numerous in areas with high traffic, and so they open until 7.00 pm if not 8.00 pm.

On Sunday, visiting the various markets of the capital (usually from 7.00 am to 1.00 pm) is a real pleasure - with their animation and variety as well as with the quality of products offered you will be surprised.


Belgium goes on vacation mainly during the month of July, during which schools as well as many companies are closed. Except for the National Day on 21st July and the celebrations of the French, Flemish and German-speaking communities, the country applies the same holidays as the majority of the EU countries.

This period is a good opportunity to visit the city as accommodation prices are generally cheaper.

The list of public holidays and most common holidays are available by clicking here.


WiFi internet connection is available in all the good hotels.  

Some are free, others are against payment: ask at the reception. Having free internet connection is becoming a main criteria for visitors when selecting hotels, and it is likely that this service will become always free (or included in the price of the room) …Many cafes offer this service, free or against payment, on request.