Beijing to Xian: Train Experience Part 1: Buying the Tickets

For our 2nd night in Beijing, instead of sleeping in a hotel, we opted to ride the sleeper train going to Xian, China. Anyway, I wasn’t able to get pictures of the Beijing west station, so I grabbed some of them from the net–so, forgive me once again! 😦

BUYING THE TICKETS

Anyway, after a whole day touring the Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven and Summer Palace, our tour guide drop-us off the Beijing West train station. But before that I asked her to write the Chinese words “Please let us buy ticket going to Xian, a soft-sleeper for 4 persons”. If you are going to D-I-Y in buying train tickets, I really suggest you to put those words in Chinese…

We were dropped off in the 2nd level of the train station, which I later realized is the departure area. And take note, we still don’t have tickets since all the netizens out there says that the tickets can easily be bought in the train station, and reserving it online will cost much more money.

Beijing West Railway Station (photo from Baycrest Photos in Panoramio)

So, I don’t have the freaking idea where to buy tickets! I was so stressed because my family looks very tired already and I want them to rest. And since I was the coordinator of this trip, I should be held responsible. So, I tried asking the counters, which seems to be the ones where a lot of Chinese are lining up and buying tickets (take note, I’m still in the 2nd floor, I don’t know that there was a ground floor yet!); so, I also lined up and then I showed them the piece of paper and they waved their hands and said “Mei-yo” (forgive how I spell it) which I learned from some Taiwanese movies… that it means “No” or “None”. I was so shocked that I frowned out them and said “Wei Shi Ma” which means Why?.. Then they talked to me in Chinese and I don’t understand it anymore… the other one pointed her hands to her right which signaled that I should go there… and I’m like “where?” instead of going where she pointed me at,  I just went to my family, and I just tried to figure out the situation.

I also asked the policeman or security guard or whatever that is wearing blue there, but he also can’t speak English! For God’s sake, I was really appalled and just can’t believe what is happening.

My Phone which is searching for “How to Buy Tickets in Beijing west train station” was taking too long to load… and I know I’m already spending a lot of money for that. There is no wifi there, only my phone and my postpaid subscription in the Philippines. Anyway, since the internet is my friend when it comes to travel, I searched for an internet shop nearby and thank God I saw one! The internet shop is located near the stairs, and then I realized that there is somehow a “ground floor”. When I’m almost got inside the internet cafe, a Chinese man who looks so curious, made me think maybe he can help (although it can be dangerous at times); I then showed him what is written in the note, and he said “Ah! Ticket?!” and I said “Yes! Yes!” then he pointed me to go downstairs and I’m like hesitant to do so…. So, he escorted me down…. and pointing to the “Vast Ticket Station” and he also assisted me to go to the right line. I was really happy and thankful to him.

For the random man, who helped me… I’m really thankful for you! Whoever you are.. God Bless you!

Well, now I learned that the ticket buying counters of the train station is downstairs; so if ever the taxi dropped you off at the second floor or like a “departure hall” already, just go down, you can use the stairs at either side of the building (it is outside the building, no need to go in, and you will also not be able to go inside if you don’t have tickets). You will notice it is the ticket-buying counters if you see a large sign (just like in the airport where flights are written), and you can go inside without anyone asking for your ticket 🙂

Remember, no one speak clear english there, so foreigners like me, it will really be hard… but hope this few tips above will help you. Just let me repeat it:

  1.  The ticket counters are on the ground floor of the train station
  2. The departure halls are in the second floor of the station

Anyway, if you wanna reserve your tickets weeks before your trip, you can reserve in this website, but it will be much costlier than buying it on the station itself:

How to Get to the Railway Station *from Beijing-Travels
  • By subway: the under construction of subway line 9 will be connected with the station by 2012.
  • By Bus: No.9, 21, 40, 47, 50, 52, 54, 65, 67, 205, 209, 212, 301, 319, 320, 373, 374, 387, 414, 437, 609, 616, 661, 663, 673, 694, 695, 741, 802, 823, 937 (branch), 937 (expert), Te 2 to Beijing West Railway Station.
  • By taxi: The cost from midtown Beijing to Beijing west Railway Station is normally around 40CNY P280.00 or $7 USD depending on the type of taxis

Here are the train Schedule and Fares from (Beijing Travel), I also converted the price, so the price you see is in this following order CNY, PHP, USD)

Train No. Departs Arrives Seat Fares Hard Sleeper Fares Soft Sleeper
T151 1:59pm 3:42am
  • Y150,
  • P1050,
  • $24.50
  • Y256/265/274
  • P1792/1855/1918
  • $41.67/43.13/44.6
  • Y400/417
  • P2800/2919
  • $65.11/$67.88
T41* 3:52pm 5:37am
  • Y158
  • P1106
  • $25.72
  • Y270/281/290
  • P1890/1967/2030
  •  $44/46/47
  • Y 424/442
  • P2968/3094
  • $69/ $72
T55 4:43pm 6:12am
  • Y150
  • P1050
  • $25
  •  Y 256/265/274
  • P1792/1855/1918
  • $42/43.13/44.6
  • Y400/417
  • P2800/2919
  • $65.11/$67.88
T231 4:59pm 6:47am
  •  Y150
  • P1050
  • $25
  •    Y  256/265/274
  • P1792/1855/1918
  •    $42/43.13/44.6
  • Y400/417
  • P2800/2919
  • $65.11/$67.88
T75* 5:50pm 7:14am
  • Y150
  • P1050
  • $25
  • Y256/265/274
  • P1792/1855/1918
  •  $42/43.13/44.6
  • Y400/417
  • P2800/2919
  • $65.11/$67.88
T7 6:29pm 7:44am
  • Y158
  • P1106
  • $25.72
  • Y270/281/290
  • P1890/1967/2030
  • $44/46/47
  • Y 424/442
  • P2968/3094
  • $69/ $72
Z19* 7:57pm 7:58am -/-
  • Y270/281/290
  • P1890/1967/2030
  • $44/46/47
  •  Y 424/442
  • P2968/3094
  • $69/ $72
Z53* 8:03pm 8:12am
  • Y158
  • P1106
  • $25.72
  •  Y270/281/290
  • P1890/1967/2030
  • $44/46/47
  • Y 424/442
  • P2968/3094
  • $69/ $72
T43/T46* 8:30pm 9:00am
  • Y158
  • P1106
  • $25.72
  •  Y270/281/290
  • P1890/1967/2030
  • $44/46/47
  • Y 424/442
  • P2968/3094
  • $69/ $72
K1363 9:52pm Xi’an South

12:43pm

  • Y150
  • P1050
  • $25
  • Y256/265/274
  • P1792/1855/1918
  •  $42/43.13/44.6
  • Y400/417
  • P2800/2919
  • $65.11/$67.88
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