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Train questions
Hello Im going to China for the first time and I don't speak mandarin at all, but Im planning to visit Beijing , Zhengzhou, Luoyang, Xian, Wudang, Zhangjiajie, Shanghai, Suzhou, Beijing, is this too difficult to travel by train? How can I get the tickets in advance? Are there some recommendations of how to make all these trips?

By: Leonel at Sep 27, 2012 - 22:16
1. some of the hotels will buy the tickets from the agents and have them delivered to the hotel. I recently have done that at the cost 20 yuan per ticket, worth every penny, save going to the ticket place, queue up etc.

2. I have also met someone who wrote everything down on a piece of paper and hand it to the ticket officer, only trouble is when there are issues.

3. you will need to pay 5 yuans when purchase at official agent and not at station.

4. looking at your plan, i would at someone to get you a ticket from B to Z, when you arrive Z, write down date, time etc for Z to L (longmen), assuming your going to see the grotto, when arrive L, buy ticket to X(north) etc.

have a nice trip, just returned from a 7000 km train ride in China.

By: Tom at Sep 30, 2012 - 5:35
Thank you!!!! hope it will not be SO difficult but then again its part of the adventure!

By: Leonel at Oct 8, 2012 - 21:0
you are welcome.

Just one more thing, when you buy a soft sleeper, you get to go to the VIP waiting room.

and if you can read Chinese, do use 12306.cn to check everything for you journey.

By: Tom at Oct 11, 2012 - 5:1
Hi, I am planning to travel from Guangzhou to Beijing on soft sleeper train and here are my questions;
1-On the sites regarding China Train there are 2 types mentioned for soft sleepers, a)upper , b)lower, what does that mean really?
2-As far as I know, there are 4 beds in a train room that means when I buy 3 beds, there will be a foreigner with us on the 4th bed?
3-What are the things I should be careful about when taking train in China especially with kids (8&12 yrs)
4-Is it possible to find places 1 week perior to travel date?

Thanks indeed!
Ilknur

By: Ilknur at Oct 12, 2012 - 15:30
1 - Upper bunks are upper bunks and lower bunks are underneath. Lower bunks are more expensive because they are considered better as they are more convenient.

2 - Yes, you will probably get a Chinese person in the 4th. These trains always sell out in First Class close to departure.

3 - Just common sense really - have something for them to do during the long trip. There are probably no safety issues regarding children on these trains that would not also apply on trains in your home country - making sure they don't get off at the wrong stop, for example.

4 - The tickets only go on sale 10 days before travel, so you are better buying them then. Like I said, First Class sells out for sure.

By: marcus at Oct 18, 2012 - 8:18
Oh, and if either of the children are under 120/150cm tall, they will get a discounted rate ticket.

By: marcus at Oct 18, 2012 - 8:25
Hi, i am traveling to china in the summer, and hope to take train from chengdu to beijing aften two weeks at the giant panda reserve, but, i cant find a converter for the price. It says rmb, for example, the most expensive is 658 rmb, how much in dollar or £ or is rmb the same as hkd or Cny?

By: Vic at Oct 21, 2012 - 17:56
There are plenty of currency converters online. Try Oanda. You can also print out cheat sheets to help you when you travel around.

By: J at Nov 5, 2012 - 17:8
I want to travel from Guiyang to Kunming, and then on to Vietnam; what trains do I use, and how long of a trip is it? Any advice on crossing the border, and what to expect on that side?

By: raskil at Dec 14, 2012 - 21:6
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