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4 Important Facts about Smoking on Chinese Trains

Written by FabioUpdated Jul. 5, 2021

Smoking is prohibited on all Chinese high-speed trains (G, D, and C trains). Most normal-speed trains (Z, T, and K trains) offer smoking areas in the spaces between the cars.

You are allowed to smoke in the open areas on the platforms. Below, we have detailed four important facts you should know about smoking on Chinese trains.

1.Smoking Is Strictly Prohibited on High-Speed Trains

In China, smoking is strictly prohibited on high-speed trains for health and safety reasons. The prohibition extends to all areas of the trains, including toilets. Incidents of passengers being caught smoking on high-speed trains have been reported, highlighting the importance of adherence to the no-smoking policy.

To enforce this policy, high-speed trains are equipped with smoke detectors. Any instance of smoking, regardless of location on the train, will trigger an alarm. In response, the train may slow down or even come to a complete stop. This strict enforcement aims to ensure the well-being of all passengers and maintain a safe and smoke-free environment on high-speed trains in China.

2.You Can Smoke in the Open Areas of the Platforms

If you find yourself on a long train journey and feel the need to smoke, you do have the option to step off the train and smoke on the open-air platform during brief stopovers. However, it's crucial to be aware that the stopover time at some stations can be as short as 2–3 minutes. In such cases, staff members on the platform may prompt you to return to the train promptly.

ITo manage this, it's advisable to check the stopover time at each station in advance and plan accordingly for a smoke break during the journey. Additionally, staying close to your car's door is a practical approach, ensuring that you can easily reboard the train in a timely manner. This way, you can accommodate your need to smoke while being considerate of the limited stopover times during the trip.

If you book your train tickets with us, you can check the stopover times with our trip advisors. Book your train tickets with us.

open-air platformOpen-air platform

3.Where Is the Smoking Area on a Normal-Speed Train?

In China, the high-speed rail networks strictly prohibit smoking on trains. However, the rules differ for normal-speed trains. While smoking is banned inside the cars of normal-speed trains, it is allowed in designated areas, typically found in the connecting spaces between the cars. Look for the "Smoking" sign in these designated areas, as they indicate where smoking is permitted. Passengers may find Chinese smokers utilizing these spaces.

It's worth noting that, due to health and safety concerns, smoking is gradually being banned on more normal-speed trains. To ensure compliance with the current regulations and locate designated smoking areas, passengers can inquire with the train staff. Staff members on the train can provide information about whether there is a smoking area and its specific location, helping passengers adhere to the rules and regulations during their journey.

You can show them these bilingual sentences for help:

  • Hi, conductor, is there a smoking area on the train? Thanks.
  • Excuse me, where is the smoking area on the train? Thanks.
Smoking is harmful to every oneSmoking is harmful to every one

4.The Consequences of Violating the Smoking Restrictions

According to a newly released document in China, those who violate the smoking rules on high-speed trains or in the non-smoking areas on normal-speed trains will be prevented from traveling on trains for 180 days and will be fined 500–2,000 CNY (71–296 USD).

If the result of smoking is deemed a threat to public security, besides the punishments mentioned above, the violator will also be given up to 15 days' security detention or even be subjected to criminal proceedings by the police.

On normal-speed trains, each car usually contains both smoking and non-smoking areas. However, there is only one air-conditioning system per car on the normal-speed trains. This means the smell of smoke can spread to the non-smoking areas. For passengers who are allergic to smoke, it is better to take a high-speed train.

You can read about the differences between the train types and seat classes in China via this link: Choose China Train Types and Seat.

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