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Where to Book Sapsan Railway Tickets
The era of rail travel is back and it's never been easier to explore the world by train. And planning every trips begins with searching for railway tickets. When it comes to Sapsan, travelers have several options of how the booking process might go.
One of the simplest options is purchasing your tickets on railway station before departure. A bit of an old-school, but still a popular option. Of course this option has a few pitfalls to keep in mind. The lines to ticket desks can be quite impressive, there is a high chance that the staff doesn't speak perfect English (or at all), and you always risk being told that tickets are already sold-out. Plus, you need to arrive to the station earlier no have room for maneuver which can be inconvenient.
Another option is to order your tickets online. For example, Russian Railways have a website where you can book tickets directly from the operator. But here nothing is easy either. Although the resource is available in English as well as in Russian, it is not very user friendly and you need to get an account first. If you want the convenience of online booking but don't want the hassle, consider using one of the third party booking platforms. Our choice is Rail Ninja, as it boasts a very intuitive interface, provides extensive information about railway systems, stations, and trains around the world in five languages, and allows booking ticket for up to a year in advance. The booking process is very simple, let's have a close look at it. Rail Ninja reviews speak for themselves, so don't hesitate to check them out.
Rail Ninja: Review of the Booking Process
FIRST STEP: SELECT DESTINATION
1. Go to Rail Ninja, and choose the type of your trip: One or Round.
2. Select where you traveling from /to.
3. Choose the travel date/s.
4. Indicate how many people are traveling, and indicate children (if any).
5. Click button "Continue".
SECOND STEP: SELECT A TRAIN
1. Choose the train you prefer for the journey, depending on the desired departure/arrival time.
2. Press the "Select Seats" button.
THIRD STEP: SELECT SEAT CLASS
1. Choose the travel class want to travel in and a tariff (Flexible/Super Flexible) that works the best for you.
2. Press the orange "Continue" button at the right bottom corner.
FORTH STEP: FILL IN PASSENGER DETAILS
1. Add your passenger and payment details (or choose to fill in later) and pay.
2. Receive your e-ticket to the inbox.
3. Print it out.
How to Read a Sapsan Train Ticket
As mentioned above, after you book a Sapsan train ticket and make the payment, you receive an E-ticket.
It is highly recommended to print out this E-ticket as it is your boarding coupon that you will need to show together with your passport as you get on the train.
Unfortunately, this E-ticket can be tricky to read as the information is partially written in Russian.
This video gives a detailed explanation of how to read a Sapsan train ticket correctly.
Sample of Sapsan Train Ticket
Below you can find an example of how a Sapsan train ticket looks like. Such Russian train tickets may be hard to understand, that's why in the guide below there's everything you need to know about what is written on such an E-ticket.On the very top of the E-ticket you can find the ticket number in red in the center, and on the right the order number which is usually the same as your ticket number
A little below on the right you can see your last name, first name initials. Then two letters "ЗЗ" that stand for your travel document code after which you see your passport number info (partially) and date of birth.
In the first column of the table, below the calendar image, you can see the departure date (first the day, then the month). The fourth column with the other calendar image shows the arrival date. The second column, under the clock image, displays departure time. The fifth column under the other clock - the arrival time. Note that the time is indicated in the 24-hour clock, instead of a.m. / p.m.
! Importantly, keep in mind that the departure and arrival time is always indicated in local time and is duplicated in Moscow time below the table.
The third middle column gives route information and the arrival and departure stations (Leningradsky Station in Moscow - МОСКВА ОКТЯБРЬСКАЯ ЛЕНИНГРАДСКИЙ ВОКЗАЛ; Moskovsky Station in St. Petersburg - САНКТ-ПЕТЕРБУРГ-ГЛАВН. МОСКОВСКИЙ ВОКЗАЛ). The last 6th column has information about your travel class. Such codes are used by the official carrier. "1" stands for First / Premium Conference Cabin and Business class; "2" stands for Economy Class / Economy Plus and Restaurant Car / Dining Class. The middle line of the table, from left to right, contains information about your train number, then the coach number and your seat number. If this is written by your seat number "НЕ У СТОЛА", it means that you don't have a table seat, "У СТОЛА" means table seat. The last line of the table shows information about the ticket price. If it is stated "У1" - it means that one meal is included per your trip. If there is no such sign, then no food is included in the ticket price.
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