Beijing to Shanghai via Train D305 – Soft Sleeper

This was my second trip on a train in China and again it’s an overnight train with the trip taking just over 10 hours. I would be travelling on the D305 which leaves Beijing South station an 9.40PM and arrives in Shanghai at 7.52AM.

The train leaves from Beijing South Station which is very modern, clean and an easy place to hang out featuring a KFC, McDonalds and numerous other cafes and a pair of restuarants. 

Being an overnight journey I went the the ‘soft sleeper’ option again with the ticket this time costing 685RMB ($107AUD) booked via the Red Wall Hotel tour desk. The train is newer than the one I took from Xian to Beijing   and also featuring a small LCD screen at the end of the bed which unfortunately only screened shows in Chinese.

Inside the Soft Sleeper cabin on the D305
Each bunk has an individual LCD screen with remote controls and headphones
Hot water dispenser, and mirror and wash basins at the end of each car, the cars also have western style toilets

Again, there were four bunks in the cabin and when I entered one lady was already settled in and looked at me curiously when I made my way in. ‘Ni, hao’ I said as I entered, and quickly got a ‘ni hao’ in response (ni hao is equal to hello in mandarin). She spoke some more words in mandarin which I didn’t understand. ‘wu bu hui shou putonghua’ I replied with a smile, meaning I cant speak mandarin, she smiled and could see I was struggling to find somewhere to put my bag and pointed out a neat little storage space beneath the bottom bunk.

That was pretty much the extent of our communication for the journey and just before the train was set to depart a young chinese male joined us in the cabin and one bunk was still empty as we departed.

It was a quite trip all way and with no one knowing anyone else, and one of those people unable to speak the language, soon everyone was in sleeping mode. Come morning most people in the train start waking early at around 5.00 and start making use of the wash basin, mirror and toilets at the end of the car.

The lady that was sharing the cabin jumped off at Nanjing, which is the only stop prior to Shanghai. Not long after that I jumped down to the lower bunk and got my luggage ready to go.

The young guy that was in the bunk below seeing me says a big helloo, turns out he is a university student who can speak pretty good english. We chat for a while about his uni life and we soon start talking about house prices in China, a hot topic here as they have been on the up and up.

I told him how housing prices in Australia were getting further and further out of reach of the average wage earner, and he concurred that the situation was very similar in China except that for some its just a dream that even dreaming of is unrealistic.

Pretty soon the train arrives in Shanghai and its time to see a new city.

Shanghai Train Station

6 Comments on “Beijing to Shanghai via Train D305 – Soft Sleeper

  1. this is more of a question. how far is the beijing south railway station from the city center? thank you/

  2. Thanks for you post. I am planning to book D305 from Bejing South to Shanghai on May 9th. Did a ticket D305 only cost RMB685!? The regular price, accordign to the website, is RMB 730. NOt to meintion some other service charge would be applied. Does this mean I don’t worrty to much to book a train ticket in advanced through internet? I will arrive Beijing Capital on May. 7th fro New York. Call the Novotel Shangyuan they said it will not be high season so it should be ok to buy ticket upon arrival. What do you think? Thanks in advanced.

  3. Also, is there enough space to put a regular suitcase that the dimension won’t be over 150cm? And I am a tall guy 6’2″…do you think I cam fit in the bunk?

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