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Foreigners find tickets to ride on China railways are hard to buy!

Popularity 4Viewed 3607 times 2016-1-26 09:47 |Personal category:practice|System category:Others| cultural, festival, services, finding, provide

    Faced with the language barrier and cultural divide, foreigners are finding it hard this year to buy rail tickets in China ahead of Spring Festival.

   More than 300 million people are forecast to travel home to celebrate the festival, which falls on Feb 8.

   But most railway stations don't provide English-language services for international travelers, according to a staff member at China Railway Corp. The employee was speaking on the company hotline, which also has no English service.

   China Railway Corp suggested that international travelers be accompanied by Chinese-speaking friends, or ask other buyers for help at ticket windows where there are no signs in English.

   Launched in 2011, the official online ticket reservation system does not have an English-language service. Even if foreign travelers have mastered Chinese, they can only make a maximum of four reservations online. They must take their passports to stations for identity checks before making any further bookings.

   Once an online booking is made, travelers can collect tickets at stations or have them delivered by mail. The company suggested that foreign travelers should always carry their passports or other identity documents.

   How to hit the tracks in China?

    1. Buy tickets at station windows.

If you can't work out which window to go to, make for the one with the longest line. Remember to take your passport.

    2. China Railway's booking website, 12306.cn.

The most popular and convenient way to buy rail tickets in China. On Monday, the first day of the 40-day Spring Festival travel rush, more than 4 million tickets were booked online. The site does not have an English-language version.

    3. Other travel websites.

Some sites, including Qunar.com, travalchinaguide.com and the Ctrip site provide English-language services for ticket searches and reservations. Any purchases other than those made through China Railway come with certain risks.

    4. Local travel agencies.

Booths and windows with signs saying huo che piao (train tickets) can be seen on the streets in most cities. They are usually run by small travel agencies. Buying tickets generally incurs a fee of between 5 and 10 yuan($1.5).

    If you have any questions,please call 12306 or give email to me--fengchao227@sina.cn.

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)


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Comment Comment (7 comments)

Reply Report stander3068 2016-1-27 14:11
not only foreigners but also domestic people find it harder to book train tickets during spring festival vocation. I myself did not got one ticket from shanghai to Shangqiu either.
Reply Report rain227 2016-1-28 00:21
stander3068: not only foreigners but also domestic people find it harder to book train tickets during spring festival vocation. I myself did not got one ticket fro ...
yeah,i agree with your idea,maybe you can book your train tickets before 30 Ds.
Reply Report Dracarys 2016-1-29 10:09
high speed railway would do ..
Reply Report rain227 2016-2-2 15:20
Dracarys: high speed railway would do ..
we can book the ticket through the internet.
Reply Report Dracarys 2016-2-2 17:07
rain227: we can book the ticket through the internet.
well... it's more convenient now ..
Reply Report rain227 2016-2-3 10:36
Dracarys: well... it's more convenient now ..
en,every thing will be ok,happy new year!
Reply Report Dracarys 2016-2-3 12:30
rain227: en,every thing will be ok,happy new year!
happy new year ..

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