Trains In Poland
About the various trains in Poland and how to use them to your benefit.
Express trains stay within the country. They visit the major cities and larger towns. You can reserve tickets on them.
The intercity trains give you prompt, efficient service between the major cities in Poland and the major cities in Europe. For long hauls, such as trains between Warsaw, Poland and Berlin, Germany, they run a few times per day. For common runs such as between Warsaw and Krakow or Gdansk, they run just about every hour.
A run from Warsaw on an intercity train to Krakow takes about 3 hours. It is a comfortable ride.
The fast trains and regular trains can be difficult. Many of them, if not most of them, do not take reservations. Depending on the run and the time of the day, it can be push, shove and shout to get on the train and to try to get a seat. Many a person does not get a seat on these trains and ends up standing in a crowded passageway.
Commuter trains are very popular. They serve many people around cities all over Poland. They are inexpensive, low budget and you should not use them until you have been seasoned to travel in Poland.
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Train tickets can be bought at train stations all over Poland.
You will find, however, that most of the people in the ticket booths at the train stations do not speak any language but Polish.
You will find, also, that though they may have information about trains leaving the station at which you are, in many cases they do not have information about connections.
So if you do not speak Polish, and if you do not speak Polish and do not know the train on which you should get, you should have someone Polish buy the tickets for you.
Getting On A Train
The train stations in Europe are havens for pick pockets and thieves. The train stations in Poland are no different.
Thieves will pick you out as you leave a cab or car and follow you to the train platform. Of they will pick you out anywhere else as you head toward your train. When you get on the train, they will jostle you, pick your pockets and proceed to the other end of the car where they will get off the train with your valuable.
You are most vulnerable when you are stepping into the car and when you are being jostled in the aisle and corridor headed for your seat. Be super careful.
When on the platform, many times you can pick out the thieves as they stand on the platform picking their marks. They know whom they will approach before they get on the train. In some cases, they watch people leave a car in the parking lot, steal the keys as the person gets on the train and then steal the car. If you see people watching you, they may be doing it for a reason. Then look the other way, they may have an associate on the other side of you.
Departure and arrival schedules, in the larger stations, are posted on the walls. Likewise there are often schedule boards that show the current status of individual trains. You can also see the schedules in the links for buying tickets that in the section on buying tickets above. And see Train Timetables.
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