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How to take trains in China?

Travel Forums Asia How to take trains in China?

1. Posted by gracefan (Inactive 13 posts) 3y

I am planning an independent travel in China and my budget is limited so that I want to save some money throughh transportation and accommodation. I heard that train tickets is relatively cheap by comparison with flight. But I fear that it is hard to get a train ticket in China and whether it is safe to take trains in China. So can anyone give me some info about China trains and how to book tickets in advance?:)

2. Posted by vegasmike6 (Travel Guru 3562 posts) 3y

I have never been to China, but here is a great website on train travel. The answer to most of your questions will be discussed here.

3. Posted by Lena91 (Budding Member 11 posts) 3y

Hi Gracefan,

Here are some useful tips for you.(I'm a Chinese student.)

  • Well there is no need to worry about personal safety as long as you take good care of your property and belongs. Chances for violent robbery are very small. So just go ahead and do not speak to those people peddling their stuff and do not fall for tricks either.
  • And the official booking wensite for train tickets is 12306. It's the only official one, REMEMBER! And then register with your passport number, if you've got a very long name, please make sure you write the right family name(given name could be abbreviated).
  • The advance booking date could be up to 20 days(it varies). But there is a barrier to do that since there is no English version available. Feel free to ask your Chinese friends for help or I can help you with that.
  • And after done that, just go to the railway station to fetch your ticket with your passport.

Welcome and enjoy your stay here.

[ Edit: Edited on 27-Mar-2013, at 00:45 by Lena91 ]

4. Posted by danu2004 (Budding Member 10 posts) 3y

That was quite informative though I'm just piggy backing on the forum poster.

I'm just curious about the pricing - is it the same whether you book in advance or over the counter? I speak and write mandarin so communication would not be a problem.

Also, I can't seem to access the ticket buying part of the site. Is it normal or is it just my computer being uncooperative?


5. Posted by Lena91 (Budding Member 11 posts) 3y

Hi danu2004,

  • The price is gotta be the same whenever you book in advance or over the counter except that you are Chinese student or officer or other beneciary group.
  • While I don't quite know about website problems. The website crashes once in a while. Try more times maybe it will work.
Post 6 was removed by a moderator
7. Posted by gracefan (Inactive 13 posts) 3y

thanks everyone. The info you give is very helpful.

8. Posted by Lena91 (Budding Member 11 posts) 3y

Cheers! Enjoy your stay in China:)

9. Posted by fangly (Inactive 4 posts) 3y

hi , just book it in the ticket office and online, and it's very easy for you to get a ticket during your China travel.

10. Posted by lukeshartung (Budding Member 4 posts) 3y

Thanks for the advice guys, very helpful