Arrival by train from Shanghai

Apr 6, 2010

Arrival by train from Shanghai

As Shanghai is the closest city to Hangzhou, at about 174 kilometers away, most people travel between the two cities by train.

Going to the train station

In Shanghai, Metro Lines 1 and 3 both stop at Shanghai South Railway Station and Shanghai Railway Station. Alternatively, you can take a cab there.

Departure and arrival stations

You can choose to depart Shanghai from Shanghai Railway Station or Shanghai South Railway Station. There are three stations to arrive at in Hangzhou: Hangzhou East Railway Station, Hangzhou South Railway Station, and Hangzhou Railway Station, which is the closest to downtown.

Fastest journey between Shanghai and Hangzhou: from Shanghai South Railway Station to Hangzhou Station (nearest to downtown Hangzhou). Trains from Shanghai Railway Station to Hangzhou Station will take a longer time. The shortest travelling time is 90 minutes and the longest can take up to 3 hours.

** Hangzhou East Railway Station has been closed for construction, and Hangzhou South Railway Station is far away from downtown Hangzhou, so Hangzhou Railway Station is recommended as the arrival station.

Ticket information

Train tickets are on sale 10 days in advance so if you are planning a trip, you can buy your tickets beforehand or on the day itself as there are daily trains running between Hangzhou and Shanghai every 20 minutes to hourly. However, you will have to buy standing tickets if you get tickets on the day of your departure (from either Hangzhou or Shanghai) as there might not be seats available. You will have to stand throughout the journey and the shortest travelling time is around 90 minutes.

Ticket Office in Shanghai and Hangzhou

If you cannot speak Chinese, write down the train number and date, get into a queue and present it to the ticket sales officer to ease communications. Always ensure that you buy tickets from the ticket office and not from street sellers. If you want to buy tickets on the day itself and have a schedule to follow, arrive early to queue. Give yourself time to find your way to the waiting room as train stations in Shanghai and Hangzhou are big and always crowded.

Standing tickets

You can buy standing tickets when all train seats are occupied. The prices for standing tickets are the same as economy classes and you can only stand in the economy class. There are no standing tickets for first class nor are you allowed to stand in the first class section.


There are currently five types of trains running between Hangzhou and Shanghai: the ones starting with the letter 'D' (e.g. D5681), the ones with letter 'T' (e.g.T7779), the ones with letter 'K' (e.g. K287), the ones with letter 'L' (e.g. L373) and those with no alphabets (e g. 1344). Trains are air-conditioned with a restaurant in the middle carriage, and pushcarts on board selling snacks and drinks.

  • 'D' trains are the most comfortable (even for economy class) and the fastest, taking around 1hour and 30 minutes from Shanghai South Railway Station to Hangzhou Railway Station.
  • 'T' and 'K' trains are express trains although not as fast and new as 'D' trains. They take around 1 and half hours to 2 hours and 40 minutes of travelling time.
  • 'L' trains provide temporary services between Hangzhou and Shanghai to ease the crowd flow during peak seasons, and takes approximately 3 hours.
  • Train services with no alphabets takes more than 3 hours as they normally stop at stations along the way.


Prices of trains and classes vary. In China, 'hard-seat' (硬座) means economy class while 'soft-seat' (软座) means first class. Prices below are all one-way:

'D' trains:
Economy class: 54 - 63 yuan
First class: 64 - 75 yuan

'T' trains:
Economy class: 29 - 33 yuan
First class: 44 - 50 yuan

'K' and 'L' trains:
Economy class: 25 - 33 yuan
First class: please enquire at the ticket office

Non-alphabet trains
Economy class: 26 - 33 yuan
First class: please enquire at the ticket office

From Hangzhou Railway Station to downtown Hangzhou

By cab:

The cab stand is located just in front of the arrival gate. Go straight to the right of the arrival hall to the cab stand. You might be stopped by people offering rides but do not accept as this is illegal and you might end up paying more than usual.

By bus:

Take the escalators on the right or left of the arrival hall, to the square where the public bus station is located. Bus services to downtown Hangzhou: K7 (which goes to the main district and most tourist attractions), K290、K11、K188、K900、K151、K95、K207、K156、K3.

** For arrival at Hangzhou South Railway Station, take bus K537. For arrival at Hangzhou East Railway Station, take buses K214、K2、K106、K220、K219、K72、K205、K355、K28、K228.