SGR increases advance booking days as cargo train makes maiden trip

The SGR station in Mombasa. The Madaraka express services that were halted in March will resume on Monday. PHOTO: FILE

Mombasa,KENYA:The Kenya railways has increased the advance booking days for the Standard gauge railway train.
In a statement issued on Saturday, the corporation said it had increased the advance ticketing days from the initial 14 days to 30 days prior to the date of travel.

“From January 1, 2018, our customers will be able to purchase a ticket 30 days before the date of travel; any period between the thirtieth day and the day of travel; or on the actual day of travel itself.” Reads part of the announcement.

The statement came just a few days before the SGR Cargo train made its maiden trip.

The cargo train which has a capacity of 4,000 tonnes  and 216 TEUs for the single stack train while the double one has a capacity of 432 TEUs when filled to capacity is expected to make  four trips a day according to the ministry of transport.

Statehouse in a statement confirmed that the train had left the Mombasa port.

The train service has undergone various changes since it made its first maiden trip on 1st of June 2017.
Initially the train was operating a one trip express train which used to leave Nairobi and Mombasa simultaneously at 9.00am .

Later the train service introduced the online booking platform and included passenger details to help edge out middlemen.

In October the train service introduced the inter county train service that makes stop overs at the 6 substations of Mariakani,Miasenyi,Voi,Mtito andei ,Kibwezi,Emali and Athi River.

Approximately half a million passengers have used the train since launch and construction of the second phase of the railway expected to link Nairobi and Naivasha is currently underway.