Guangdong Intercity Railway opens up the "artery" of transportation. The Greater Bay Area meets a new "fusion" change

The Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area is one of the most competitive and dynamic regions in China's economy. In 2023, the total GDP will exceed 14 trillion Chinese Yuan. As the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area continues to improve its infrastructure construction, the economic connections between cities are becoming closer, and various industries are blending and integrating together, promoting complementary advantages and integrated development at a higher level. At 12:00 on 25 May 2024, the Guangzhou-Foshan South Ring and Foshan-Dongguan Intercity Railways were officially launched for operation. These two newly opened intercity lines are connected end to end with the existing Foshan-Zhaoqing Intercity and Dongguan-Huizhou Intercity, realizing the "four-line" connected-operation and forming a traffic "artery" across five cities.

As an intercity railway, citizens can buy tickets on the 12306 App or at the self-service ticket machine at the intercity stations. The ticket is valid on the day of purchase, which means that passengers can take the train flexibly without having to take a specific train, just like taking a city rail train. In addition, the "no seat" remark on the ticket does not mean that the seats are full, it means seats are not allocated in this line, passengers can sit freely in any position.

In addition to buying tickets through the railway system, citizens can also choose to use a variety of payment methods such as the China T-Union card (全國交通一卡通), Lingnan Pass(嶺南通), and Yang Cheng Tong (羊城通) to enter the station and take the train, which is as convenient as taking the subway. There is no need to buy tickets in advance, and you can go as you want, and the travel time will be more flexible. These changes are the result of railway system innovation, realizing the "12306+intercity railway public transportation multi-payment" dual ticketing system.

This 258-kilometer intercity railway is called the accelerated version of the "large subway". On the one hand, it is the "hard connection" of transportation infrastructure, and on the other hand, it is the "soft connection" of the system and mechanism. The "subway-like" intercity is accelerating the formation of the "integration" of the Greater Bay Area, creating a new development pattern of "one network, one ticket, and one string of cities".

The average travelling interval of the Guangdong Intercity Railway Lines is 26 minutes, and the full fare ranges from 5 Chinese Yuan to 153 Chinese Yuan. In the future, more ticket types will be explored such as counted-based tickets and monthly tickets.

Guangdong Intercity Operation Company expects that after launching of the line, the average daily passenger on weekdays will exceed 30,000, and the average daily passenger on weekends will exceed 50,000. 

Disclaimer: This article is published by The Ynet (北青网) and has been excerpted and translated into English. If there is any inconsistency or ambiguity between the English version and Chinese version, the latter one shall prevail. The full text of the article, in Chinese, can be found below:

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