Mombasa, KENYA: Passengers commuting between Mombasa and Nairobi are set to pay sh.900 for economy class, Sh 3,000 for business class for an SGR ride between the two counties.
Three passenger trains are expected to run daily between Nairobi and Mombasa.
The passenger service is expected to operate two types of trains – intercity and county.
The intercity option will see trains operate between the cities. The county option will make stops at Mariakani, Maisenyi, Voi, Mtito Andei, Kibwezi, Emali and Athi River.
Intercity trains have a capacity of 1,200 and will take four and a half hours while the county train will take about five and a half hours.
Two of the trains, one from Mombasa and the other from Nairobi, will run a daily express service between the two cities.
According to Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia, the new railway will charge a half of what bus companies demand and will cut by half the time it takes to travel between the two cities.
” We loked at the market rates and wanted to make it affordable and sustainable so that Kenyans can enjoy the ride.” Said Macharia.
According to Macharia the three trains will run daily for the first three years but if there is a need to add others, they will do so according to capacity.
Meanwhile, President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected to officially launch SGR operations on Wednesday, at Port Riz where the cargo train trip from Mombasa will be flagged off.
The Charges for containerized cargo from the Port of Mombasa to the Inland Container Depot in Nairobi have been set at $500 (Sh51,675), while Other freight will cost Sh32,800 to transport.
Meanwhile, President Uhuru Kenyatta accompanied by all the Cabinet secretaries, some MPs, a Chinese delegation, and 1,200 students from schools representing Kenya’s 47 counties and journalists, will take the maiden trip on Thursday morning.
The train will leave Mombasa at 8am, making stops at the seven main stations for commissioning before arriving in Nairobi at 6pm.
The Standard Gauge Railway is set to cause a major effect in the transport sector with buses plying on the Mombasa-Nairobi route charging about Sh1,200 for economy, Sh1,800 for VIP, and Sh2,500 for business class.
Another major factor is the time it takes to travel between the two counties which lately has been affected by Massive traffic jams, resulting to passengers spending more than 12 hours on the road.