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FAQs about Travelling in China by High-speed Train

China has one of the biggest and busiest railway networks in the world, and trains link almost every town and city. China’s first high-speed rail - Beijing-Tianjin Inter-city Rail was officially operated on August 1st, 2008.

Now, China’s high-speed railway covers most part of China, stretch south to Guangzhou and Guilin, east to Shanghai and north to Harbin and the total mileage has exceeded 13 thousand kilometers. The following questions listed are the frequently asked questions about China high speed rail.

1. What is the high-speed train ?

The high-speed trains are also called fast train whose general speed exceeds 200 kilometer per hour. In China, basing on the operating speed, they can be classified into three types: G Trains ( High-speed EMU Trains ), D Trains ( Electric Multiple Unites Trains ) and C Trains ( Inter-city EMU Trains ).

1) G Train

G Trains is named "Gao Tie" in Chinese. It is the fastest trains and running long distances through China. Its top speed could reach over 350 km/h. However, the speed is limited from 200 km/h to 300 km/h in different routes. Normally, it serves in two end-points with a couple of intermediate stops.

The latest generation G trains are recognized as the fastest commercially operating train in the world, as well as having the highest technology and the most advance system. The interior is very luxurious, equipped with facilities for work and spacious and comfortable seats. G trains are designed to meet the latest requirement for long-distance travel, with large capacity and short travel time. Taking a high speed train is convenient due to the most pleasant journey of China's rail networks.

China Gao Tie / High-speed EMU Trains

2) D Train

D Trains is also called Hexiehao (和谐号) in Chinese or bullet train. The designed top speed is 250 km/h. This kind of high-speed train have been widely operated for serving between two big tourist cities, such as Beijing-Xian, Beijing-Shanghai, Shanghai-Suzhou, Beijing-Guilin.

The seats can be reclined and have collapsible coffee table attached to the seat in front. The air-conditioning and all doors are automatic.

China Hexiehao / Electric Multiple Unites Trains

3) C Trains

C Trains is also call Chengji Lie Che (城际列车) in Chinese. It is also one of the fastest EMU train in China, but operates for short distance between two nearby cities, such as Beijing - Tianjin, Nanchang - Jiujiang, Shanghai - Nanjing, Changchun - Jilin and Shanghai - Hangzhou.

China Chengji Lie Che / Inter-city EMU Trains

2. How about the seats on the high-speed trains ?

All high-speed trains have the first-class seats and the second-class seats, and some trains also have the business class seats or VIP seats.

1) The Business Seats

Business seats are the most luxurious and expensive seats and are available on some, but not all of the high-speed trains. Usually, there are two business carriages at the front and rear part, behind the operation cab. The carriages are spacious with two meters of space between two rows. There are three seats in a row – two on one side and one on the other side of the aisle.

You can turn 360℃ the sofa-like leather seats. They are equipped with complete facilities. The backs can fold down flat for sleeping. There is a mini LED TV set with many movies folded in the left arm of each seat. There is another benefit: you can have a good sightseeing outside the window in business carriage.

The business seats of China High-speed Train

2) VIP Seats

On some high-speed trains, instead of business seats, there are VIP seats in VIP carriages behind the operation cab. They are very comfortable with enough space and good facilities. There are three chairs in a row, the same as the business carriage – two on one side and one on the other side of the aisle. The seat can turn 360℃ and can be turned back.

3) The First-class Seats

The first-class seats are available in high-speed trains: D trains and G trains. First class seats are designed to be as spacious as an airplane seat and very comfortable, arranged four seats per row - two seats either site of the aisle. There is better air quality in the carriages. Each seat has a power outlet for passenger use. The seat can turn 360℃ and can be adjusted backwards to a comfortable angle.

The First-class Seats of China High-speed Train

4) The Second-class Seats

The seats are available in G trains and G trains. They are the cheapest kinds of seat onboard, but still with space to stretch your legs comfortable. There are five seats per row, and smoking is not allowed.

The Second-class Seats of China High-speed Train

3. Why to take the high-speed train in the tour ?

In the vast region of China, traveling by flight is the most common way for foreign travelers. But now, you have another choice: high-speed train for your travel transportation, whether from north to south. There will be many foreigners having a doubt: why taking a train in my China tour?

Please read the following top reasons that our travelers recommended.

1). Fast and Convenient ( than normal train )

The high-speed trains are the fastest trains in China with average speed at 300 km/h. The speed may be more than two times that of normal trains. They just need 5 hours from Beijing to Shanghai ( over 1400 km ) and 10.5 hours from Beijing to Guilin ( over 2100 km ).

2). Comfortable and Clean ( than normal train )

Whether the carriage space or seat, the high speed trains are absolutely more comfortable and enjoyable than China's normal train. The first-class seats, second-class seats, VIP seats and business seats are sofa-like leather seats, different in degree of hardness and softness and other facilities. There are power supplies for passengers to recharge their devices during the train journey.

Due to the higher price than normal trains, the passengers taking high-speed trains are less than normal trains. Also the friendly staffs on the trains are asked to offer refreshment trolley service ever half hour.

3). Punctual ( than plane )

The high-speed trains are always on time because they are not like flight usually influenced by bad weather, traffic jams.

4). Cheap ( than plane )

For example, on the Jan. 30, 2013 from Beijing to Guilin, the full-price flight ticket is RMB1425 plus additional RMB70, while the first-class seat ticket of G529 is RMB1249.5, the second-class seat ticket is RMB806 and the business seat ticket is RMB2530 and without any additional fees.

5). Easy access to the midtown ( than plane )

In order to keep flight safe, all airports in China are located far from the midtown. But train stations usually are located in the densely inhabited district. In addition, it is more convenient to take a public bus to train station than to airport.

The staffs of China High-speed Train

4. How to buy the high-speed train tickets ?

1) Book and buy the ticket on the official website www.12306.cn (China's Rail Service Center) around 20 days before your departure date.

2) Show your passport and cash to buy your ticket at the Ticket Counters ( not at the Ticket Machines).

3) Change a ticket: you can change it one time at your departure train station 2 hours before your train departs.

4) Cancel a ticket: with your passport, you can cancel your cancel at the designated windows of your departure train station 2 hours before your train departs. But there is 5% service charge.

China High-speed Train

5. What can you do for booking the high-speed train tickets ?

On our website www.beijingholiday.com, we can offer the following train tickets booking:
* Beijing – Xian train tickets
* Beijing – Shanghai train tickets
* Beijing – Lhasa train tickets
* Beijing – Guilin train tickets
* Beijing – Chengdu train tickets

If you need train tickets between other cities in China, just feel free to contact us, we will be email you within 24 hours.

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Have a question about your China trip planning? Simply tell us your travel ideas and we will handle the rest. No deposit is needed until you are totally satisfied with all tour plan details.

Call a specialist on +86-10-6800 2460

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