Madaraka Express fully booked till after Idd-ul-Fitr
Kenya Railways has apologized to passengers who intended to use the Madaraka Express train because it is fully booked for the next several days.
Passengers using the SGR trains between Nairobi to Mombasa and back have as a result been advised to be buying their tickets in advance.
“Tickets can be bought up to 3 days before the date of travel between 7:00am and 4:00pm at the Mombasa Terminus in Miritini and Nairobi Terminus in Syokimau,” a post on their Facebook page read.
Kenya Railways on Tuesday announced that passengers can now purchase and pay fares via M-Pesa, removing a hurdle that had opened the ticketing business to middlemen.
Kenya Railways reached a deal with Safaricom for paybill numbers that will allow commuters to pay from home and get tickets at the station.
Previously, passengers could only book by paying cash at the ticketing offices in Nairobi or Mombasa.
About nine paybill accounts will be available, representing each terminal.
Once a payment has been done, a passengers will get a reference number, which he or she will use to get a ticket at the station.
The tickets have a travel date and time but no name. They also contained travel class, carriage and seat numbers.
An economy class ticket costs Sh700 while a first class one goes for Sh3,000.
Kenya Railways also announced that they will be launching the inter-county train service beginning July, 1. This will allow passengers to alight and board on the stations between Nairobi and Mombasa.
The two inter-county service trains will supplement the existing Madaraka Express train and will be travelling on both directions.
The trains have become popular with passengers due to low promotional prices and smooth rides, a situation that has left hundreds stranded at the stations.
The express train slashed the time for the 472 km journey to about four hours from 12 hours on the line built more than a century ago that stretched from Mombasa to the Ugandan capital Kampala. The older line is operated by Rift Valley Railways.