High speed rail in China
One of the great things about living in China is access to a vast network of High Speed Rail (HSR) – a cheaper, and perhaps more comfortable, alternative to flying.
China boasts the largest HSR network in the world – more than the rest of the world combined. But what is the experience like? If you’ve ridden trains in Europe or Japan, it’s fairly similar. You arrive at the train station and after checking in, sit in a large waiting room. When it’s time to board, you present your ticket and someone will direct you to your car. Your seat will be marked on the ticket.
Trains usually reach max speed shortly after departing the city. They typically hover around 300km/h in open spaces. A you sit and watch the hills and villages of the countryside roll by, a stewardess might walk up and down the aisle offering snacks and beverages (including beer).
Some rail lines also have sleeper berths, although because the train is so fast – the longest journeys only take have a day – it’s rare that you’d need one.
Overall, the vast network of HSR is just one of the things that makes travelling in China so convenient and compelling.