Bloomberg | | Posted by Zarafshan Shiraz, New Delhi

A new high-speed sleeper train service is set cut travel time between Hong Kong and Beijing and Shanghai by about half as the financial hub seeks to deepen ties with mainland China.

Hong Kong to Beijing and Shanghai: New high-speed sleeper trains cut travel time by half (Photo by Twitter/Bloomberg)

The services, which start June 15 and run Fridays to Mondays, will reduce travel time between Hong Kong and Beijing to 12.5 hours from more than a full day, MTR Corp. said in a statement. Trips to Shanghai will be shortened to 11 hours from 19.5 hours, according to Hong Kong’s mass railway operator.

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A trip to Beijing will set travelers back as little as HK$937 ($120), with a journey to Shanghai starting at HK$682 ($87) and sleepers costing more. That compares with about $100 for a 3.5-hour flight from Hong Kong to China’s capital in mid-June and as low as $78 for the less than 3-hour plane ride to Shanghai.

As well as the longer travel time, the overnight train services will run just once a day compared with at least a dozen flights over the weekend between Hong Kong and the two mainland cities. Long-haul daytime train services that clock in at about eight hours will continue to run on the route that’s popular with tourists and business people alike.

The introduction of the sleeper trains means passengers can “maximize their travel time and conveniently plan their business or leisure itineraries,” MTR said. Tickets for the new service go on sale on June 5.

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.

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