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Oriental Express help needen

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1. Posted by blake77 (First Time Poster 1 posts) 10y

Hi Everyone

I am planing to travel from Moscow to Bejing sometime in the fall. I have looked around for prices for a train ticket on the oriental express, but all I get are expensive travel agencies...

Does anyone know if I can buy a ticket at the trainstation in Moscow - and how much it costs?

Thanx

Michael

2. Posted by GregW (Travel Guru 2635 posts) 10y

I think you may have your classic train journey's mixed up. The Orient Express travels from Paris to Istanbul, so that's not going to help you get from Moscow to Beijing.

I think you want the Trans-Siberian or Trans-Mongolian train. And yes, tour companies on the internet are very expensive. Even the cheapest ones are probably 4 times the cost that you would pay buying the tickets independently at the station.

The answer to you question is yes, you can buy the tickets at the station. As for prices, I noted the prices on the tickets that I got when I did the trip in the fall of 2005. They are in my blog at this link: Greg W's Great Trans-Mongolian Advice.

Here's the prices of the tickets from Moscow to Beijing in the legs that I did.

Moscow - Irkutsk = 3780.1 Rubles or $US 131.00 for shared cabin sleeper with 4 people
Irkutsk - U.B. = 1617.8 Rubles or $US 56.07 for shared cabin sleeper with 4 people
U.B. - Jining = 40580 Mongolian or $US 34.22 for shared cabin sleeper with 4 people
Jining - Beijing = 83 RMB or $US 10.26 for open dorm style sleeper (lower bunk)
Beijing - Hong Kong = 646 RMB or $US 79.87 for open dorm style sleeper (middle bunk)

Another good site to check out is the man in Seat 61 at Seat61.com. Tons of great information.

3. Posted by Gelli (Travel Guru 2457 posts) 10y

Cheapest is to buy at the station. And its easy to do with a bit of writing (write down what you want beforehand) and even easier with a few very basic words of Russian. And it's by far the cheapest.

It's also cheapest to travel Platskartny (3rd class) which is open bunks but perfectly fine, and which gives you a chance to meet real Russian people and interact with them. Platskartny is normally between 33 and 50% cheaper than 2nd class Kupe (4 beds in an enclosed room) which is how Greg mostly travelled. Platskartny can be taken as far as Irkutsk (or Chita if going via Manchuria) and from Irkutsk to Ulan Bator on the shuttle train, but not on the direct Moscow-Beijing trains.

NOTE: You CANNOT get on and off the through trains. They are ONLy available for international journeys, so unless you don't plan to get off until you reach Mongolia or China, then you will not be leaving Moscow on eiteh rof the Beijing bound trains.

Oh, and...

I think you want the Trans-Siberian or Trans-Mongolian train.

Despite what 99% of the world thinks, thats not true. The Trans-Siberian DOES NOT go to Beijing, or even China. Strangely when you consider it's name, the Trans Siberian train actaually crosses Siberia instead...

The Trans Mongolian (cheaper, but requiring Mongolian visa) or RTrans Manchurian (longer and a bit more expensive, but without Mongolia visa needed) are the two route to Beijing.