BANGKOK — Thailand’s new and possibly fanciest regular train service can now be booked for overnight trips to the north and northeast.
Equipped with new carriages featuring improved decor and facilities, the Special Express Train routes linking the capital to Chiang Mai and Ubon Ratchathani provinces will begin running daily Nov. 11.
Tickets are now on sale, the State Railway of Thailand announced Wednesday.
The new cars will also be used for a new route between Bangkok and Nong Khai in the north and and Hat Yai in the south starting Dec. 2. Tickets for those routes go on sale Saturday.
Prices range from 700 baht to 1,600 baht depending on the route, class of car and position of the sleeper seat. Check timetables for routes listed as “Special Express.”
The government-operated railway spent roughly 4 billion baht on the new 115 Chinese-made carriages.
The addition of new bogies to the system’s worn and often uncomfortable equipment has been warmly received by the public since first announced in July.
Every passenger seat offers a USB charging socket and LCD screen entertainment selections.
Instead of standalone diesel-electric locomotives, the new trains will be pulled by powered cars, which are said to be quieter and less harmful to the environment.
The toilets, long one of the least pleasant experiences for Thai rail travelers, will operate like those on airplanes and not simply empty onto the tracks.
The cars are also equipped with security cameras, officials said, and include accessibility lifts to raise wheelchairs from the platform.
Conductors and other train staff will also be outfitted in spiffy new uniforms.