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China is now known to have the world’s vastest and fastest train network. Being possibly the most economic means of travel, train is flavored domestically and it is still highly likely to encounter ticket shortage during important festivals and national holidays. That being said, the railway system is not necessarily friendly to foreigners. Here are some articles that would help you understand what to expect for booking trains in China:
Choose between high-speed and ordinary trains.
When you read a ticket, please pay attention to the Chinese character and pinyin after a place name. Directions: north, south, east, and west are printed in pinyin on tickets instead of English, respectively Bei, Nan, Dong, and Xi. For example Beijing South Railway Station will be printed as Beijing Nan () on a ticket (see the second ticket below), Beijing East is showed as Beijing Dong (), Beijing West (Beijing Xi, ), and Beijing North (Beijing Bei, ). Please make sure you are going to the correct train station. How to Read a Train Ticket?
Taking a train in China is very different from in western countries. The article below may help make your journey smoother and more convenient.
Double security checks for passengers traveling to Beijing in October
Published on Oct. 17th, 2017
From Oct 11th to Oct 31st, passengers who take the train to Beijing need to go through security twice. To allow time for security checks and ticket checks, we suggest that passengers arrive at the train station at least 1 hour before departure.
Seat Selection Function For High-Speed Trains
Published on Oct. 13th, 2017
Before Oct. 11th, the China Rail system used to choose seats for passengers automatically, and the seats can not be changed unless cancel the reservation. But now since Oct. 11th, passengers can choose preferable seats when booking tickets for high-speed trains on China Rail offical website. Currently, this function only applys for C, D and G categories of trains.
Passengers can search transfer information on China Rail system
Published on Oct. 13th, 2017
Another new function on China Rail official website since Oct. 11th. The website provides transfer information when there is no direct trains between two cities. Meanwhile, the website shows the number of seat availability and connecting time of the two trains. Passengers can book tickets on those two trains at the same time.
Xi'an to Chengdu High-Speed Train is About to Run!
Published on Sep. 30th, 2017
The Xi'an to Chengdu high-speed train started a trial run on Sept 28th, 2017. It takes only 3 hours from Xi'an to Chengdu! A regular high-speed service between Xi'an and Chengdu is expected to begin in October 2017.
News about “Fuxinghao" High-Speed Train
Published on Sep. 22th, 2017
Since September 21st, the maximum running speeds of the "fuxinghao" high-speed trains have been increased to 350 km/h. The "fuxinghao" trains running between Beijing and Shanghai are G1/G2, G3/G4, G5/G6, G7/G8, G9/G10, G13/G14, and G17/G18. The journey takes only four-and-a-half hours. More varieties of food are provided on these fast trains, including set meals, chicken rolls, dumplings, noodles and sandwiches.