How to get to Leuven
Where is the conference held?
The conference will take place at the Faculty Club in Leuven. The Faculty Club is located at the Groot Begijnhof number 14. For more information on directions to the location, see also their website: http://www.facultyclub.be/en/itinerary/.
How do I get there?
A general note: when you take a train to get to Leuven, please do not confuse Leuven (Louvain in French) with Louvain-La-Neuve (“Leuven-the-new). Louvain-La-Neuve is not an outskirt of Leuven/Louvain but an entirely different city in another part of Belgium, so you will end up in the wrong direction.
1.From Brussels International Airport to Leuven train station
Brussels Airport is about 25 km from Leuven and has a good train connection with Leuven. Going by train is most likely your best option, especially if you travel around rush hours, as taxi’s and buses tend to get stuck on the busy highway. The direct train takes 13 minutes and rides twice an hour (there are more trains, but these are indirect and require changing).
To get to the trains, go down to the station area of the airport, which is underground. Before entering the station area, buy a ticket to ‘Leuven’ from one of the vending machines of the Belgian railways, which can be recognized by this symbol:
A one-way ticket should cost approximately 8.80 euro. This includes a 5 euro fee called ‘Diabolo toeslag’ (‘Diabolo fee’) for usage of the airport station. Please make sure your ticket includes this fee, otherwise the magic glass doors to the station tracks will not open for you…
Alternatively, you could take a taxi. When taking a taxi, please be aware that in our experience, not all taxis in Belgium accept creditcards or other cards, so better check beforehand if you need cash… A taxi from the airport would cost you ca. 70 euro (note that the night rates are higher). For more information on taxis, see here: http://www.brusselsairport.be/en/passngr/to_from_brussels_airport/taxi/.
By shared taxi
There are also companies operating shared taxis (like the US shuttleservices). Here is one company offering such services which has their website in English: http://www.budgettaxi.be/tarieven_gen3.php?file=zav_vlb&zone=Vlaams-Brabant&dest=Zaventem&dtype=Luchthaven. Note that this is one of the companies that has a cash only policy for private customers. A single ride is about 40 euro.
We do not recommend taking the bus: it takes forever (almost 1,5 hour instead of 15 minutes) and does not save you much money…
2. From Charleroi Airport to Leuven train station
To get from Charleroi Airport to Leuven, you first need to take a shuttle bus from the Airport to Charleroi South Station (“Charleroi Sud”), and then take a train from there. There is no direct connection from Charleroi to Leuven, you will need to travel through Brussels and change trains at Brussels South Station (“Bruxelles Gare du Midi”).
How to get a ticket: At the airport, there are two ticket machines outside the terminal near Door 2 where you can buy a ticket from South Charleroi Airport to Leuven, that includes both the bus and the train ticket. The current price (July 2016) of a single is 15.50 euro. You can pay using cash or credit/debit card.
Please count at minimum 2 hours to get from the airport to Leuven station: the train ride takes about 1.5hours, and the bus an additional 20 minutes. Buses generally depart every 30 minutes.
At the online route planner of the Belgian railways, you can search in English, and retrieve and print exact journey details for the time of day that is relevant to you: http://www.belgianrail.be/jp/sncb-nmbs-routeplanner/query.exe/en,
3.From Leuven train station to the conference venue
The faculty club is a bit of a walk from the train station, as it is located at approximately the other end of town (at Groot Begijnhof 14). It will take you about half an hour. See
for directions. The route via the ‘Maria Theresiastraat’ is the easiest and most direct. The nice, touristic route goes via the Grote Markt (“big market square”) and the city center.
Buses 1,2 and 601 stop close to the Begijnhof.
For bus 1 and 2: take one of these buses in the direction “Heverlee” when you come from the train station exit at the stop “Heilig Hartkliniek”. From there it is a 5 minute walk to the conference site. This map will take you there:
For bus 601: this is called “Binnenringbus” (inner-ring bus) and takes the big circular road around the center clockwise. Note that this bus drives only on weekdays between 06h00 and 18h50, and on Saturdays between 08h00 and 21h50. After about 7 minutes, exit at the stop “Heverlee (University) Sportscentre” (“Heverlee Sportcentrum”) which is right in front of a Q8 gas station. This map will take you the 300 meters to the Faculty Club:
At the ‘Martelarenplein’ in front of the station you will be able to find taxis. They are not exactly cheap: the ‘starting fee’ should be around 2.50-3 euro, the rate per km about 2 euro. If you need a taxi at another moment in time, one of the bigger companies you could call day and night is ‘Taxi Cordons Leuven’, phone: +32 (0) 16 22 20 00.