Price to hike for train tickets in Vietnam during Tet

By Tieu Quy.

6Oct2011 Vietnam Railways announced  the plan for selling train tickets for the Vietnamese Lunar New Year in 2012 (Vietnamese Tet) with 10% increase of ticket prices for train journeys northwards before Tet and for those southwards after Tet. During the peak time, train ticket prices may increase by  19-39%. There is no information about the peak time just yet. It often happens that there is severe shortage of train tickets in Vietnam during the period of Tet; as the Vietnamese flock home northwards before Tet and travel back to work after Tet. The Vietnamese Tet in 2012 is on 23Jan2012, which means public holidays in Vietnam for Tet is 22,23,24,25Jan2012.


Vietnam Train
Sleeper compartment on a train in Vietnam

 According to Vietnam Railways, the period of adjusting the train ticket prices is from 8Jan2012 through 13Feb2012. The reasons for increasing the train tickets are that petrol prices in Vietnam have increased by 40% since the Vietnamese Tet in 2011 and that during Tet, most passengers only travel one way at the same time and the trains are all filled up one way while almost empty the other way.

To book train tickets for the train during the Tet period, the passengers are required to show their ID card or driver license or other identity papers officially recognized by law. Change of train tickets or cancellation of change tickets are to be done no later than 10 hours before departure and the change of tickets/cancellation fee for the peak period is 30%.

Vietnam Railways also disclosed that during Tet, the company would operate all Re-unification Express Trains between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (or Saigon) which includes: SE1/SE2, SE3/SE4, SE5/SE6, SE7/SE8, SE9/SE10, SE11/SE12, SE13/SE14, SE15/SE16, TN3/TN4, TN5/TN6, TN7/TN8, TN11/TN12, TN17/TN18 và TN19/TN20.

Besides, Vietnam Railways will operate more trains between major cities/destinations that include:

SH2/1 between Saigon - Hue;

SQN2/1 between Saigon - Quy Nhon;

SQ2/1 between Saigon and Quang Ngai;

SNT2/1 between Saigon and Nha Trang;

SPT2/1 between Saigon and Phan Thiet;

Saigon Train Station announces that based on the real demand during the period, it may operate the train SH4 from Saigon to Hue and return; train D2 from Saigon to Da Nang and return; train SK2 from Saigon to Tam Ky Town (Quang Nam Province) and return, train SNT4 from Saigon to Nha Trang and return.

According to Vietnam Railways, the company will convert the sleeping berths on Level 1 in a 4-shared sleeper compartment into soft seats: 3 soft seats for each berth. There is no change for 6-shared sleeper compartments.

The company also announced promotions for the direction of lesser demand: up to 79% for the direction from Hanoi to Saigon before Tet and up to 50% for the direction from Saigon to Hanoi after Tet.