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Madaraka trains to increase to 13 this festive season




Coaches will be increased to 13 from eight for economy class passengers in the next three weeks. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The number of coaches on the standard gauge railway (SGR) Madaraka Express train between Nairobi and Mombasa is set to increase in the next three weeks in a move aimed at accommodating more passengers during the festive season.

Kenya Railways acting managing director Philip Mainga said Monday the coaches will be increased to 13 from eight for economy class passengers in the next three weeks.

The two coaches for first class passengers, however, will remain the same in the new service regime set to take effect starting December 24.

The train is currently pulling eight coaches (944 passengers) on economy class tickets and two coaches (138 passengers) on the first class tickets.

“We will be adding five more coaches on the Madaraka express train starting December 24 to December 27 to accommodate more passengers during the festive season.” said Mr Mainga in an interview with the Business Daily.

“This is in addition to the five coaches we add every Friday, Saturday and Sunday.”

The SGR passenger train service between Nairobi and Mombasa was launched last June.

The trains have been departing daily from both directions, offering a four-and-a-half-hour non-stop connection between the country’s two major cities.

It charges Sh3,000 on first class coaches and Sh1,000 on economy class coaches.

The inter-county service train that was launched last December charges Sh50 from Mombasa to Mariakani, Sh230 from Voi to Kibwezi, Sh130 from Athi River to Emali, Sh510 from Nairobi to Voi and Sh400 from Emali to Maisenyi on economy class coaches.