Traveling by train in Vietnam can be an excellent way not only to enjoy the amazing scenery of the Vietnamese countryside but also spice up your time here. If you ever find yourself in the capital city of Hanoi, don’t hesitate to buy a train ticket for a change. Here’s everything you need to know about Hanoi Trains.
View of Lang Co from the train
Passing by the Hai Van Pass
A Brief Introduction to Hanoi Trains
Hanoi Station (Ga Hang Co), Hanoi’s first train station
Trains were first introduced as a mean of transportation in Vietnam in 1881 by the construction of the first railway from Saigon to My Tho (now a city in the Mekong Delta). Hanoi witnessed the establishment of its first train station, Hang Co Station, in 1902. Since then, various routes have been set to connect Hanoi with other towns and cities in the country. Traveling by train was once the best way to get around from the capital city. People now shy away from it since the introduction of faster and more convenient methods of transportation. Currently, Hanoi has 3 train stations for commercial purposes: Long Bien Station, Gia Lam Station, and Hanoi Station.
Train Routes from Hanoi
Long Bien Station
Reunification Express Train Routes: Danang, Dieu Tri, Ho Chi Minh City, Dong Hoi, Hai Phong, Hue, Muong Man, Nanning (China), Nha Trang, Ninh Binh, Sapa, Tuy Hoa, Thanh Hoa, Thap Cham, and Vinh.
Your train will start from Hanoi Station, get to Hanoi Train Street, then Long Bien Station, Gia Lam Station before departing the city.
The Hanoi Train Street once served as a famous tourist destination
Tourist Train Routes: These are long-distance trains that connect Hanoi with four of the prominent touristy provinces of Vietnam: Danang, Dong Hoi, Hue, and Sapa.
The Laman Express Tourist Train at Hanoi Station
How to Travel to Nanning City (China) from Hanoi by Train
You can buy train tickets to Nanning City offline at train stations or book tickets online at least 3 days in advance. The train will depart from Gia Lam Station at 9:20 PM daily and reach Nanning Station at 9:12 AM the next day. All the berths are equipped with soft beds to ensure a comfortable journey. The train ticket costs VND 1,000,000/turn.
- Passengers are required to present passports, China VISA when buying tickets, or getting on the train to Nanning City.
- You can make a reservation to travel back to Hanoi at Gia Lam Station and buy the return tickets at the destination station 3 days in advance.
Type of Seats and Price of Hanoi Trains
The price for train tickets in Hanoi varies depending on the destination and the type of seat. It means that you’ll pay more for longer travel and better seats.
Types of seats
Soft seats in trains in Vietnam
- Hard Seat (Standard): The basic option provided when you travel by train in Vietnam. It’s a bench made of hardwood and often sits 2 people side by side.
- Soft Seat (Deluxe): You can pay a little extra to upgrade your seat to soft. It’s a comfortable sofa that would help if you have a bad back or want to take a good nap during your travel.
- Berth (Long Distance only): For routes that are over 150km long, you can opt for berths on the train. It’ll provide you with beds instead of seats, and can also be upgraded to deluxe, which is more comfortable and private.
How to Get Tickets for Hanoi Trains
Buy Tickets at the Hanoi Station
There are 3 stations where you can buy train tickets in Hanoi: Gia Lam Station, Long Bien Station, and Hanoi Station. Here’s our guide to purchasing tickets at Hanoi Station, the most popular one.
Get to Hanoi Station on Le Duan Street, get in by the main door then turn right through the passageway to reach the ticket office. Here, find the window marked “Tourist” and queue up. Tell the operator your destination, time, train number, and types of seats, then pay for the ticket. You should reserve a seat at least 2 days before to get soft seats and have time to change the tickets should there be a problem.
Passengers buying tickets at Hanoi Station
- Not all the operators speak English, so it’s a good idea to write down the information for the ticket beforehand in Vietnamese.
- If you arrive at the last minute, don’t panic, find the booth where they sell immediate tickets at the corner of the ticket office, near the boarding pass. They’re more expensive but will guarantee you a seat.
- Parking usually costs VND 5,000/bike/turn. Overnight parking will cost VND 20,000. However, the security guy may try to get an advantage of you and overcharge, so be careful.
Buy Train Tickets Online
Buying a train ticket in the comfort of your home the best option for international travelers in Vietnam. All information is in English, and you will receive a coupon for your tickets via email. What is left to do is presenting the coupon at the train station before boarding on the train.
Look for a train ticket in the search form below:
Conclusion on the Hanoi Trains Guide
After getting through the language barrier and getting your tickets, traveling in Vietnam by train can be a fun way to spice up your stay in Vietnam. We would strongly advise you to take a train from Hanoi to nearby provinces such as Ninh Binh or Hai Phong for a change. Comment down below what you think about our Hanoi Trains Guide, and stay tuned for more in-depth local knowledge into Vietnam Travel.
To learn more about traveling by train in Ho Chi Minh City: