Shanghai to Hangzhou Highspeed Train

The Shanghai to Hangzhou Highspeed Train will officially launch at the later half of October, 2010. Today, the headline news is, the train experimented to run at 416.6 km/hour (259 miles/hour).

At commercial operation, the train will link Shanghai and Hangzhou. It takes about 40 minutes to get to Hangzhou from Shanghai Hong Qiao Railway Station, running at 350 km/hour (217 miles/hour). The current D-Train, the fastest, is about 2 hours.

It seems we can take the high-speed train for our meeting in early November in Hangzhou.

I am embarrassed that, as a blogger, I still didn’t experienced the new high-speed train. Before I am aware of it, the high-speed train system has run 7055 km. Well. When did I first heard of the concept of high-speed train in China? 5 years ago, I guess.

I will send back report when I personally experience it.

I do have two photos to share. It is taken on the way back from Weihai to Shanghai.

I GUESS, the photo below is picture of a station along the train line.

Below is the bird’s view of the line. I GUESS it is the highspeed train line because – it is very straight – to keep it as straight as possible so trains can run really fast, and it is all the way elevated.

Avoid Maglev for Hongqiao to Pudong Transition

This is a FAQ from my reader – "Whether taking Maglev from Hongqiao Airport to Pudong Airport save me time?"

Hello there,

i have visited your site a few times, thanks for the information, it helped us( newcomers) going from Vancouver to Shanghai. We are going back to Vancouver very soon, we will transfer the flight from Hongqiao to Pudong, because of the tight transfer time, we are planning to take a taxi to longyang road first, then take maglev train to pudong airport. I have a coupe of questions for you.
1. how far does it take for taxi from hongqiao airport to longyang station? and How much does taxi cost?
2. From longyang station, can we buy maglev train ticket right from the counter? or do I have to book the tickets first? Can we carry luggage on the train?
We are hoping to save time on airports tranfer, do you think it is a good idea to take the above route, or do you have other suggestions?
Please advice, thank you for your help!

The Maglev (photos)is fast, however, it is not a good idea to get to the train station.

The best way to get to Pudong Airport to Hongqiao or Hongqiao to Pudong by taxi is to directly go along the A20 + A1 highway. That is the fastest way. If you The two airports are just at the entrance of the highway system, and it takes about 1 hour to get there.

Maglev station is pretty in the center of Pudong, and it takes much longer to leave the express way and get to Maglev station. It does not save time. Actually, you should plan for more time to get to Maglev. Then, with the 15-20 minutes interval of Maglev, 7 minutes ride, and maybe another 10 minutes walk from Maglev station to Pudong airport, it is very slow.

If you take a taxi, it can take you from arrival hall of Hongqiao directly to the departure hall of Pudong, and it is the fastest way (a cheaper alternative is to take Airport Bus #1, which is also very fast since it goes on the expressway with no stops in the middle).

As you can see the diagram below: The red lines are expressway and is preferred. The black line is elevated highway (inner Ring), but traffic is higher.

image

On the cost wise, it is cheaper to take taxi directly to the airport if you consider Maglev ticket (40 RMB per person) if you have two or more people.

For Maglev ticket, you can get it at the counter (I even don’t think you can book it in advance). Luggage should be OK with Maglev (I have photos from inside and outside). However, I don’t think you need to use Maglev in this trip if your time is limited.

Shanghai Maglev Timetable

According to the Maglev Corp offical website, here is the schedule of Maglev:

Pudong Long Yang Road Station <----> Pudong International Airport

Time:

Long Yang Road -> Pudong Airport 7:00 – 21:00

Pudong Airport -> Long Yang Road 7:02 – 21:02

It runs at interval of 20 minutes sharp.

It means the train from Long Yang Road to Pudong Airport starts at

7:00, 7:20, 7:40, 8:00 ….. 20:40, 21:00

Please note that the top speed of Maglev is 430 km/h, which you will experience at day time. In early morning and late night, the speed will be reduced to 300 km/h for safty reasons.

P.S. This is the updated information for this old entry.

Maglev Accident in Germany

What happened in the Maglev in Germany? Why two trains can possibility hit each other? On the advertisement of Maglev in Shanghai, they use the tag line “Experience almost 900 km/hour speed when two Maglev passes each other…”.

I can imagine it is definitely not funny if they do not pass each other, but hit head to head.

I am so sorry for people who lose their lives. As the Germany president put it “It is completely unacceptable for their family or friends to say by to them in the morning but found out they never go back home again….” I share the pain of the families.

screen-germany.maglev.jpg

Image in courtesy of cbs news

There was fire on Shanghai Maglev before. This makes the future of Maglev not so clear…

Maglev Catches Fire

The headline picture of Sina.com.cn caught my attention at 21:50, when I reviewed today’s news in my living room. (This is maybe one of the 3 times I checked Sina this month, instead of daily one year ago). The news is about Maglev, my favorite topic.

This time, it is bad news. Maglev caught fire! According to the news:

At 2:40 PM, when the train left Long Yang Road Station to Pudong Airport, the fire alarm of one cart of the train was triggered. The fire was quickly put off, and all passengers was rescued.

What a piece of surprising news! This may strongly hit people’s confidence about the Hangzhou-Shanghai Maglev Line.

Here are the pictures from the news website.

Image credit: Sina news

Image credit: Sina news

Image credit: Sina news

Image credit: Sina news

The ladder (from the first cart on the right), and the rescue tube (the middle cart) are interesting. It is not easy to rescue from that a high place.

What a coincident that Maglev just held the rehearsal for fire emergency (CN) in May this year. It seemed to help.

Accident to this kind of high-tech train raise passengers’ concerns as much as problems of a aircraft… How bad it is!

MagLev May Extend to Hangzhou – Confirmed

In the morning, I saw the headline of today’s Oriental Morning Post on my desk is: Shanghai – Hangzhou Maglev will be Completed in 2008. The subtitle is:

  • Total cost: 35 billion RMB
  • Proposed East Hangzhou Station and Jiaxing Station
  • Half an hour between Hangzhou and Shanghai.

It is good news. I hate to way until 2008, though.

Impact on Me

I am happy that where I live now is 3 km away from the Maglev station at Longyang Road. It is amazing to be able to get to Hangzhou within 30 minutes. If so, to get to West lake will be within one hour – 10 minutes to Maglev, 30 minutes to Hangzhou (if I arrange the time well), and 20 minutes to West Lake. This is almost the same time from my apartment to Xujiahui (45 minute)! I believe my life will be different if it does happen.

How about the Residential Area?

One question I have is, how the government will deal with the Wanbang City Garden – the newly built residential garden just at the extended direction of the Maglev. Will they be teared down? Will the Maglev use the other path?

I am also curious about the plan of the rail of Maglev. I may pass the place where I live, since the area is just in the middle between Long Yang Road and the World Expo 2010 site. Anyone know some insight about the plan?

Maglev Extended Time

Good news. Maglev extended the operation time from today, according to Shanghai Daily.

The trains will run from 7am until 9pm instead of the normal 8.30am to 5.30pm

I complained that although Maglev is my first-choice if I can take Maglev, I only took Maglev for once. I believe I am a frequent flyer, but I seldom take flight later than 9:00 or get back to Shanghai early than 6:00. So I missed Maglev. Maglev connects the airport to my home (somewhere 4 km away from my home) and it takes only 8 minutes, but I wasn’t able to enjoy te benifit.

My Maglev Picture

I took many Maglev pictures before. Among them, there is one about Maglev before the control tower.

Today, when I search for Maglev, I saw “Maglev, First on DVD” Google Adwords advertisement on the right. Clicking on it, and I found out the DVD. It sells at 24.5 USD.

I recalled from my memery that I have granted the permission to them to use the picture free of charge as their DVD cover. Now, this is the result. Pretty good.

Check out all the Maglev Pictures I have:

shanghai-maglev-inside.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang. Shanghai Maglev Inside

shanghai-maglev-outside.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang. Shanghai Maglev Outside

The collage photos were created with Picaso 2.0 from Google.

P.S. Xiao Fan from Pian Pian Qing

I was impressed to find out Claire Robertson’s blog and wrote: “I Write While She Draws“. Today, I found another person who is also amazing. I would say: “I Write While She Speaks“.

Xiaofan, the host of famous broadcast program Pian Pian Qing on AM 792, Shanghai

I kepted writing one article one day for 3 years. Xiao Fan create an one hour broadcast program every day. Most times it is real time broadcast on the most attractive channel in Shanghai – City792. How long she has kept doing this? Nine Years!

If broadcasting were not her job, she may be the most consistent podcaster. :-)

Actual Speed of Maglev is 64 km/h

Sitting in the Larkspur Landing hotel in San Jose, I missed Shanghai a little bit, just like I missed Maglev. I mean I actually missed it when I left my home and went to Pudong Airport in Shanghai. I found out that the speed of Maglev is actually 64 km/h, instead of the 430 km/h from a traveler’s perspective.

The calculation is easy. When I pull my luggage (a bag and a laptop) on to the taxi, the driver asked where I were going. I said “Maglev station”. The driver asked me: “Are you going to the Pudong Airport? How about I directly send you there?” I know the driver definitely want me to get to PVG. Well. It is a question without easy answer.

It was around 10:35. My home is about 4 km away from the Maglev and about 40 km away from the Pudong Airport. Well…

If I take the Maglev, when I arrive at the Maglev station, I should already miss the train on 10:40 AM. I need to wait on the platform until the next train arrives at 11:00 AM. Meanwhile, I have to bring all my luggage out, walk for a while (2 minutes?) from the taxi to the station, and get to the second floor of the station to wait in the line to buy the ticket, and then bring all my luggage with me and take the elevator to the third floor to wait for the train. The train is fast, really fast, I mean if it really get started. The top speed is 430 km/h, and it takes only 8 minutes to complete the 30 km journey. But after that, the nightmare repeats itself – get off board, bring the luggage with me and go along the long walk from the Maglev to the terminal. The bridge goes to the second floor of the terminal and I have to take the huge elevator to the third floor before I can find the United Airlines counter. Everything takes about half an hour. So, the speed for the 30 km is actually 60 – 64 km/h, depending on how fast I run, instead of how fast Maglev runs. :-)

If I take taxi, the same distance also needs 30 minutes. But what I need is to close my eyes and wait for the taxi driver to wake me up at the third floor of the Pudong Airport. This choice also creates a happy taxi driver, along with a happy Jian Shuo…

What about the fare? Maglev takes 40 RMB + 13 RMB taxi = 53 RMB. For taxi, it is 94 RMB. I am running out of time already. I finally took the taxi approach. The 30 minutes well compensated to my overnight work last night. When my taxi is heading to the viaduct to the terminal station, the Maglev flied away beside us. From the tourist’s perspective, Maglev is really cool. From a business traveler’s perspective, the speed of Maglev is not that good than a taxi.

First Impression of Silicon Valley

It is the first time I visit the Silicon Valley, the dream place for many people in IT industry. It is different from what I think though. This is what the Valley looks like in my imagination:

The entrance of the Sillicon Valley is Stanford University. At the back of the University campus, there is a small garage where HP started. Beside HP is a short street. Many two to three story buildings line up along road, with logos like HP, Apple, eBay, Yahoo!….

I don’t know how I formed this impression of Sillicon Valley. Maybe it is because of the legend that Sillicon Valley started from the garage of HP, or the joke that “when you goto the street of Sillcon Valley and say you have a project, a lot of VC will jump out to you”, or the fact that many people jump from one company to the other frequently… It turned out San Jose is not that near to Stanford (at least not within walking distance) and there is no all-star street there. It is a quiet place that is no difference from other small towns in U.S.

Maglev Extends 2 Hours?

When I drive back from my customer’s site to Xujiahui, I turned to a radio station. I don’t remember the name now. I guess it is the audio channel for Shanghai TV News Program. They mentioned that to handle the large transportation population, the Maglev has extended 2 hours of its operation time. But the news didn’t tell the exact start and ending time.

The only news I can get from Google is this. It didn’t specific the new time yet.

I called 114 and asked for the ticket office telephone number. They played a piece of pre-recorded audio:

Maglev operates from 8:30 – 17:30 at interval of 15 minutes. Call 62556655 for tickets. 50 RMB for single trip. Discount available for passengers with air ticket of the same day….For F1 ticket, call 62558858…

I called the number they gave: 62556655 and heard another piece of pre-recorded message that differs from the one provided by 114.

Maglev leaves Long Yang Road from 8:20 – 17:40 and leaves from Pudong Airport from 8:30 – 17:30 at interval of 20 minutes. Call 62556655 for tickets. 50 RMB for single trip. Discount available for passengers with air ticket of the same day….For F1 ticket, call 62558858…

At 19:00, their ticket office has been closed and no one answer the phone.

So does Maglev really extends their service time? You judge by yourself. If it does, it is a great news. As I mentioned before, for a frequent flyer like me, I will take every oppotunity to take Maglev if it is possible. However, up to now, I was only able to take it once since it started to operate, because my flight either leave around 8:00 – 9:00 AM or later than 5:00 PM.

P.S. Cody complained that the site is boring to read without pictures. Let me try to add some. :D

MagLev May Extend to Hangzhou

According to the recent news report, the Maglev may extend to Hangzhou via Shanghai Expo 2010 site. The two cities with 2 hour train’s ride now may be reduced to 27 minute’s of Maglev’s ride.

The Maglev train is about 4 km away from my current home. If it extends, it will goes along the Long Yang road. There is no obvious direct compact to my life yet. Maybe the only one is, when I drive across the Long Yang Road to work everyday, I may frequently see the fast train flying on the track everyday. Although Maglev has been in operation for more than one year, I am still very excited when I see a Maglev train “flys” away when I drive on the A20 express way to Pudong Airport (or back). It is with proud to introduce the 430 KM/H peek speed to friends coming to my city.

I spent some time to report on Maglev. Among positive comments, there is negative one like this: Maglev – A Failure?. Anyway, at the time when it seems the decision of to extend it to Hangzhou was made, my best wishes to the new Maglev project and hope it will bring more economical miracle to Hangzhou, Shanghai and towns along the line.

See also:

Inside Pudong Airport Maglev Train

It is my first time to take a ride of the Maglev train. It is also the first time I was able to choose a flight that departs before the Maglev closes (17:30).

The experience is quite impressive. When the train reaches speed higher of 300 km/h, the image out of the window, especially the cars on the nearby A1 Highway become a little bit blur and my eyes cannot catch them. It is absolutely impossible to recognize how many people on board on each car. It is quite interesting visual experience.

The highest speed during the trip. It lasted for less than one minutes and went back to 430 km/h, 429 km/h….

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© Jian Shuo Wang

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© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-door-outside.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-jianshuo-seated.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-first.class.seat-yellow.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-luggage.case.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-rail-starting.point.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-rain.cart-seat.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-luggage-over.head.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-roof-train.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-ticket-background.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-ticket-face.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-train.attendant.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-train-from.front.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-two.trains.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

shanghai.maglev-window-fast.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

Maglev Schedule

Update: Shanghai Pudong Airport Maglev Schedule

First train: 8:30 AM

Last Train: 5:30 PM

Interval: 20 mins

Ticket Price: 40 RMB

Highest speed: 430 km/h

Trip Distance: 30 km

Single trip: 8 mins

Effective since: March 29, 2004

I created an image of the information above and put the image into my maglev related page. I hope whenever there is a change in the schedule, I can change the image so all the information on this site about Maglev become current immediately. Here is the code:

<img src=”http://home.wangjianshuo.com/archives/2004/08/24/screen-maglev-schedule.png” width=”640″ height=”240″ border=”0″ />

The schedule does not work for me. When I came to Beijing this Monday, the flight is 0840 and the first train to Pudong Airport is 0830. Fast as it is, it cannot help me to catch the flight.

Update May 17, 2007

The information was out of date. Please use this updated version.

Transition between MagLev and Train

I found a train ticket office at the MagLev Long Yang Station. That means, you can directly buy train ticket from Shanghai Railway Station to any train destinations. Here are the instructions:

1. Get out of the Maglev Station to the ground floor.

2. Turn north (if you still can tell directions) and enter the building of Metro Line #2 Long Yang Rd. Station.

3. Go straightly ahead till to go through the building and reach the Long Yang Rd.

4. Turn back and you will see an outlet of the train ticket office on the first floor of the building.

I believe this piece of information is very helpful to visitors who want to transit to train after leaving Pudong Airport by Maglev.

Experiencing Maglev Shanghai

Thanks to Spanky, who posted the following comment under my article: Maglev – A Failure?. I found the information very valuable and quoted the comment in this seperate post. Of cause all credit goes to Spanky.


I’ve just returned from a 3-days’ trip in Shanghai. As I had heard so much about the Maglev when I was living in this city one year ago, I decided to hop onto one for my transfer from Pudong to town. Following is a brief summary of my encounter:

1330 Hr: Pudong Airport Arrival Hall (1st Floor)

1335 Hr: Found the Maglev schedule on the 3rd Floor – next train @ 1350 Hr

1340 Hr: Bought ticket for the ride (¥50/way on economy class or ¥40 for passenger with air ticket of the same day) and board the train

1345 Hr: Maglev took off from Pudong, 5 minutes before scheduled time

1351 Hr: Arrived at Longyang Station

1400 Hr: Got into a taxi at the fourth attempt. (The previous three drivers claimed that they didn’t know where Tomorrow Square is. One of them even claimed ignorant of People’s Square when I told him that the destination is close to it!)

1430 Hr: Arrived at JW Marriott at Tomorrow Square

This new mode of traveling (Maglev + taxi) reduces the amount of time on the road and costs for transfer from Pudong airport to the hotel in Puxi. My total transfer costs came up to ¥80 (¥40 for Maglev + ¥40 for taxi). However, it will cost more than taxi fare (¥120-150) if there are three or more passengers traveling together. There won’t be much time saving if the passenger misses the connecting Maglev and has to wait about 15-20 minutes for the next one.

I must say that this mode of traveling is also not suitable for passengers with more than a carry-on luggage. This is because there are about five flights of escalators and some walking involved (no trolley available at the tunnel connecting airport to Maglev station and Longyang station).

The Maglev currently runs between Longyang and Pudong from 8.30 am through 5.30 pm at every 20 minutes interval. There are racks above the seats and between cabins for luggage. I do not think it’s necessary to pay twice as much to travel on first class as it is a very short ride and there are few users now (more Maglev tourists than transfer passengers).

I agree that an official website should be set up fast to create more awareness among travelers and encourage higher usage. Some advertisements at the airport will certainly attract arriving passengers to use the service. The overall experience was good and I will still ride on Maglev the next time I go to Shanghai.

Posted by: Spanky on April 20, 2004 11:07 PM


End of quote.

screen-maglev-schedule.png

Maglev – A Failure?

Although the Maglev connecting Pudong Airport and Long Yang Road Station attracted much attention, more and more factors show that it is a failed project.

Very Little Traffic

According to this article: Shanghai cuts maglev train ticket prices, “the 440-seat trains carried an average of just 73 passengers per day last month.”

Are you kidding? 73 passengers per day last month? The $1.2 billion train just carry 73 persons per day. That means, there is, the Maglev get 5475 RMB or 670 USD per day as revenue. Even if there is no maintenance cost, the electricity is free and all the staff don’t ask for salary, the whole project is expected to withdraw all the investment in 5,000 years. :-D

Maglev website

It seems I still have to help promote the service via this website better than before. There is no official website for Maglev yet. If you search for “Maglev Shanghai” in Google, my article returns as the first entry in the result. I hope there is an official website that by pass mine and become the first, so they may double the passenger numbers so there is only 2500 years to break-even day for Maglev.

Updated: According to Alexandre, it was a mistake in news. It should be 73 persons/trip.

PVG: Closer Look at MagLev

Attached are some pictures taken by Morning from impolo.com at the begining of this year after the MagLev just srated trail. Nice picture!

shanghai.maglev-head-in.station.jpg

shanghai.maglev-speed.431-km.h.jpg

shanghai.maglev-train-blood.on.head.jpg

Credit: Morning from impolo.com

It seems the train just hit a bird on the head. The blood is still there. Poor bird! It seems the birds still didn’t get used to live with the train yet.

Below is the picture of the Longyang Rd. Station at the other end of the rail.

shanghai.maglev-long.yang.station-outside.jpg

Credit: Morning from impolo.com

The latest update about the Maglev is, the formal operation will start from Jan of next year. Nice news for Maglev fan, isn’t it?

Read more about my previous articles:

PVG: Location of Maglev Station

Maglev is really hot recently. I can tell from the number of emails I received asking about the operation of Maglev. There is no such kind of good information on the web yet.

In the last few months, I have collected some and shared in the following articles:

More articles can be found at PVG Category page (PVG is the international air code for Pudong Airport)

Recent Operation

Now the Maglev has started to take passengers at Pudong Airport and drop them off at Long Yang Road Station. The price for single trip is 75 RMB.

Location of Maglev Station

Steve asked:

Is the way to the maglev train from the arrivals area clearly marked? Are there signs in English as well as other languages.

Well. It may not be easy for people to find the station. Since there is not sign for the Maglev yet at the International Arrival Hall. You will get very confused when you get there. It is another proof of the poor usability of Pudong Airport. I feel it is my responsibility to post some pictures about how to get to the Maglev station.

After you get out of the International Arrivals Exit (shown below), find the sign pointing to Parking. It is on the second floor of the airport. You can arrive there either by using the escalator on the right or the elevator in front of the gate.

After you arrive on the second floor of the airport, follow the sign to the parking lot. Then you will see a long bridge from the airport to the parking lots. It is shown in the picture below:

shanghai-maglev-bridge.to.maglev.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

After you enter the long hallway, you will see the first sign on the top pointing to Maglev. You can see the sign of Maglev Entrance with both English and Chinese name. The icon screen-maglev-sign.JPG is interesting.

shanghai-maglev-entrance-sign.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

After you arrive the end of this hallway, you have entered the building of Maglev Station. There is even a KFC restraunant there. It may be good choice if you are really hungry after the long trip.

shanghai-maglev-kfc.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

Below is the innovative roof of the Maglev Station.

shanghai-maglev-roof.jpg

© Jian Shuo Wang

Relationship between the Maglev Station and the Pudong Airport

Actually, the two buildings are seperate, but connected with a bridge. See my diagram below:

screen-pvg.and.maglev-map.PNG

I happen to find out another picture I took after the plane just departed on my trip to Xiamen.

shanghai.pudongairport-birdeye-with.names.PNG

It is highly appreciated if someone can share with others about your REAL experience to take the Maglev train – I haven’t get a chance to give it a try yet.

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PVG: Maglev Started Carry Passengers

Breaking news! Maglev will begin real transportation from tomorrow. It is still the trail operation, but the difference is, from tomorrow, the train will open its door to drop passengers for the first time at Pudong Airport. Before, the Maglev is purely operating for tourist. Passengers has to get on board the train and leave the train at the same station. It will directly return from Pudong Airport back to Long Yang Road after it arrives.

From tomorrow, it will drop passengers at Pudong Airport. This trail operation only opens for six days, namely, Oct 11, 12, 18, 19, 25, 26. The price is 75 RMB and the interval is 20 minutes, starting from 9:20 to 17:20.

Updated Oct 20, 2003

Oh. I forgot to let you know that MagLev begin to PICKUP passengers at Pudong Airport and Drop them off at Luoyang Road. So you can directly go to the Maglev station after you get off your flight. According to Shanghai Morning Post, 90% of the passengers getting on board the Maglev are foreigners. It seems the news goes faster to the ears of the foreigners than to local people.

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