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The bullet trains are labeled CRH (China Railway High-speed). It presently costs 55 RMB from Beijing to Tianjin
for the 33-minute trip. You can buy train tickets at the train station, but you will find that there are sometimes very long lines. There are also smaller ticketing sales points for train tickets from Suzhou to other destinations. The new sales agents boast a queue-free environment and quick service. Train tickets may be bought up to 9 days in advance, but note that you will be required to show valid ID when making the purchase (see note on new ticket purchasing system, below). If you are looking to take a train originating in another city that does not stop in Beijing, you may need to go to the Beijing main train station to get tickets. China railway customer service phone is 86 10 12306,Official website:www.12306.cn
New Train Ticket Purchasing System
Suzhou is following the lead of other Chinese cities and launching an ID-based ticket booking system starting on June 1st this year. Basically, this means that all adults will now need to show some form of official identification when purchasing train tickets in Suzhou and when boarding trains. All ticket purchasers are required to show valid ID (original documents or copies) when buying tickets for the express C, D and G train types. Valid ID includes a Chinese identity card, residence booklet, passport, foreigner’s residence permit, etc. If you want to buy tickets for friends, colleagues or a group of people, it is also possible, but you will need to bring copies of each passenger’s ID to the ticket counter when making the purchase, and a maximum of one ticket for any given train will be issued per ID. Chinese ID holders will be able to swipe their ID cards at the new scanner terminals when buying their tickets, but it is expected that purchases for groups and for foreigners will now take significantly longer than before. Note too that you will need to take both your ticket and valid ID (original document) when boarding. Children are exempted from the new system.
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