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Shanghai and Chengdu enjoy developed transportation networks. It is very convenient to travel from Shanghai to Chengdu.
We will now introduce the three most common ways to travel to Chengdu from Shanghai: by high-speed train, by airplane, and by overnight train. Read on to find out which is the best option for you.
Taking a flight is the easiest and fastest way to travel from Shanghai to Chengdu.
Both Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport and Shanghai Pudong International Airport offer about 20 flights to Chengdu in various periods.
Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport is 23 kilometers west of the Bund. It takes about 40–50 minutes to get there by car from the Bund. This airport mainly serves domestic flights.
Shanghai Pudong International Airport is 42 kilometers east of the Bund. It takes about 40 minutes to 1 hour to get there by car from the Bund. This airport mainly serves international flights.
If your hotel is near the Bund, the downtown area, or Hongqiao Railway Station, we suggest you depart from Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport. If your hotel is near Shanghai Disneyland, we suggest choosing Shanghai Pudong International Airport for departure.
This option is suitable for mid-budget travel and when you don’t mind spending a lot of time on transportation.
Shanghai Hongqiao Railway Station has more trains in service, giving you more choice. There are four high-speed trains bound for Chengdu. It is near Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport, being within walking distance.
Compared to Shanghai Railway Station, Shanghai Hongqiao Railway Station is a long way from the city, being about 50 minutes’ drive from the Bund.
Shanghai Railway Station is located in the downtown area, being about 20 minutes’ drive from the Bund. However, there is only one high-speed train.
You can choose a suitable train according to your schedule. We suggest choosing a G train, which is faster than a D train.
This option is suitable when you’re traveling on a budget. It is the cheapest way to travel from Shanghai to Chengdu. It is a challenge and an adventure. You need to spend a night or even two in the train.
We suggest choosing a train that departs from Shanghai Railway Station because it has more trains in service and is close to the downtown area with convenient transportation links.
There are different types of seats on a normal train: hard seats, hard sleepers, soft sleepers, and advanced soft sleepers (only some overnight trains have these).
If you choose a normal train, avoid taking a hard seat. It is a terrible experience to share a small space with six people and you will get hardly any sleep.
Hard sleepers, which have six beds in a small compartment, and soft sleepers, which have four beds in a private room, are better.
Advanced soft sleepers are the best option. These allow two people to share a room but the cost is expensive.
You’d better purchase your ticket in advance if you want to book a hard sleeper or soft sleeper.
It is not practical to have a day trip from Shanghai to Chengdu.
The earliest flight from Shanghai is at 07:35 and it arrives in Chengdu at 11:05. You need to finish your visit at 18:00 and get back to Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport. The last flight departs at 21:00.
This means you have little time for sightseeing and, therefore, it is not worth it.
An overnight stay in Chengdu followed by a day trip is recommended if you have a tight schedule: spend a night in Chengdu and start your tour the following morning. Book your tickets and private transportation in advance for an efficient travel experience.
We will help you book your preferred transportation, arrange the private transportation during your visit to Shanghai and Chengdu, and provide a knowledgeable English-speaking local guide for you.
Check out our most popular tours in Chengdu: