Updated: 28 March 2021 - Items marked [NEW]/[AMENDED] are new/amended since the previous update. Please contact me if you have any website related enquiry.
If you are looking for English language timetable information for railways in China you have come to the right place! - click for details.
Heritage Timetable (May 1956)
Latest available Timetable information and 'Stop Press' [Updated 24 June 2019]
Files for all editions of the full timetable
Other timetable files, including all editions of the Quick Reference timetable
[NEW] Details of printed timetables for sale
Quail China Railway Atlas
A Little History
[AMENDED] I am intending to discontinue my Chinese Railway Timetable website. Here is some background as to why...
I have been working on and with the Chinese Railway Timetable for over twenty years, and of course during that time many things have changed.
At the time I started, obtaining information in English about services on China's railways was not easy. Putting the timetable together was a challenge, but a very interesting one! I did it primarily for myself, but soon realised that it would be sensible to make the information more widely available.
Until 2016 the source document for my timetable was the printed timetable published by the China Rail Publishing House (the CRPH Timetable). This was published (in Chinese) regularly - typically in April and October each year, but with variations.
As use of the internet has expanded, information has become available online - principally in the form of journey planners rather than conventional timetables. For many users this is an improvement - the ability to see the service between any two places quickly and clearly is very useful.
Unsurprisingly, and in common with many countries, demand for printed timetable books has plummeted, and CRPH ceased publication of their timetable, with the last edition being June 2016.
Whilst journey planners are very convenient for users, they are a nightmare for compilers for several reasons:
1. Whilst it is easy to analyse the contents of a printed timetable, ensuring that nothing is missed, this is practically impossible with a journey planner.
2. It is necessary to interrogate the journey planner for every possible start/finish combination - a tall order!
3. The database is subject to constant updating - an advantage for timely provision of information, but rendering version control impractical.
In addition, whereas in the past nearly all trains ran daily, there has been a significant increase in the number of non-daily trains. It is very difficult to present this information in a usable manner in a conventional timetable.
This is an overview of the difficulties on the production side. But also, just as for CRPH, the demand for my timetable has dramatically reduced - for the perfectly understandable reason that the information most people want is more easily obtained elsewhere.
I do have a small number of dedicated customers who value the overview that my timetable provides, and I am grateful to them for their support over the years.
Realistically, for all the above reasons, it is time to draw things to a conclusion, and I am not proposing to produce another edition of my timetable; the eleventh (March 2019) edition will be the last.
I remain interested in the development of China's railway system, and always appreciate reports of developments from the ground.
I have made available all editions of my timetable (in .pdf format). For anyone interested in the development of China's railways this will hopefully be a useful resource. They can be downloaded from the links above.
I have some spare copies of various printed editions of my timetable, and of the CRPH timetable. I have listed these - please click here for details.
My website will remain active until at least the end of June 2021 - beyond this I will consider further.
I have copies of the Quail China Railway Atlas available for sale. For price and ordering information please see Quail China Railway Atlas.
[AMENDED] Where am I? - For now I am in Watford, U.K., with the possibility of travel in the U.K. from early April and in Continental Europe from late May (all subject to developments). Please contact me if I am/will be in your part of the world and you would be interested in meeting.
My current email access? - Generally you can expect a response within 48 hours, however occasionally this may not be possible. Please be patient; all emails will be dealt with as soon as possible. If you have any communication difficulties please see contact information.
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