Best Way from Hong Kong to Guangzhou: High Speed VS. Coaches

With more than 30 pairs of Hong Kong - Guangzhou high speed trains, travelers can depart from Hong Kong to Guangzhou at a faster speed, with a shorter travel time, and a more convenient customs clearance procedure. Thus bullet train has become the top choice for most passengers to shuttle between the two cities.

However, for those who are seeking more economic choices, coaches are popular. It is much cheaper than high speed trains, and is available for passengers to choose pick-up points and arrival points according to their needs, including airports, famous scenic areas and shopping areas. 

Schedule: Over 30 Pairs of High Speed Trains vs. More than 50 Buses 

Over 30 pairs of bullet trains are in service between Hong Kong West Kowloon Railway Station and Guangzhou South Railway Station / East Railway Station on a daily basis and the departure interval is around 10 - 20 minutes. During the peak period like public holidays, there may be more trains running. Departing from Guangzhou, the first train generally starts off at about 7:00 and the last train leaves at 21:50. The first train leaves for Guangzhou from Hong Kong at 8:00 and the final departure is at about 22:50.

Speaking of the buses operated between the two cities, there are dozens of coaches shuttling and the schedule generally starts from 7:30 to 21:30 with an interval of 0.5-1 hour. 

Travel Time: 1 Hour vs. 3 - 3.5 Hours

High speed trains run much faster and the duration is only around 1 hour while the travel time of coaches is generally around 3-3.5 hours, and even more from/ to the airport or Disneyland Park

Ticket Price: CNY 187 - 215 vs. CNY 90 - 110

The ticket fare for Hong Kong - Guangzhou high speed train is CNY 187 - 215 for a second class seat, CNY 261 - 344 for a first class seat, and CNY 452 - 645 for a business class seat respectively.

For Hong Kong - Guangzhou coaches, a single trip ticket fare generally costs about CNY 90-110 between the two city centers. If departing from the Hong Kong Airport, the fare costs about CNY 200. Generally, it is cheaper a lot than the train. 

Custom Inspections: West Kowloon Railway Station vs. Shenzhen Bay

When taking high speed trains, passengers can pass through customs at West Kowloon Railway Station no matter departing from Hong Kong or Guangzhou. It is convenient, taking 10-20 minutes on usual days and generally no more than 30 minutes on weekends and holidays.

Taking coaches, passengers need to clear customs at Shenzhen Bay. However, passengers have to get off the coach and take the luggage together to be checked. After the immigration clearance, passengers can take their luggage to board a coach to their destinations. Generally, 15 - 30 minutes may be needed in Shenzhen Bay.

Buy Tickets: 6 Ways vs. 3 Ways

It is easy to purchase Hong Kong high speed train tickets, from the ticketing office at West Kowloon Railway Station, local travel agencies, telephone hotlines, online agencies like, official website of China Railway Corporation, and official website of HK High Speed Rail. Cash, credit card, Octopus and a variety of electronic payment methods are accepted.

To buy coach tickets, it is available to book tickets at official websites and WeChat accounts of bus operators. What’s more, Hong Kong Airport also offers coach ticket booking at Counter M01-M05 and A02, Mainland/ Macao Transport Centre, Hall A of Arrivals Level (L5), Terminal 1. 

Comforts: Modern Facilities on Train vs. No Toilet on Coach

High speed trains have wider space, more comfortable seats, and advanced facilities. There are two-hole and three-hole electrical sockets for each seat. Free WiFi is available. 

Compared to bullet trains, coaches have smaller space and seats may not be as wide as trains'. Please note that there is often no toilet on the Hong Kong - Guangzhou coach. Drinking or eating is not allowed on the coach, either. 

Operation Stations: It Depends.

The high speed train departs from Hong Kong West Kowloon Railway Station and arrives at Guangzhou South Railway Station or East Railway Station. 

There are many departure points and pick-up points for coaches in Hong Kong and Guangzhou. Here we just list several of them.

Hong Kong: 

Kowloon Tong: 1/F, Elements, Exit C, Kowloon MTR Station
Nanjing Street, Jordan: Nanjing Street
Causeway Bay Times Square: 1 Matheson Street, Causeway Bay 
Tsim Sha Tsui Elements: 1 Austin Road West, Tsim Sha Tsui
Hong Kong International Airport: Ground Level, Terminal 1(Cheong Tat Road)


Yutong International Hotel: No. 136 Zhongshan Road, Tianhe District
Panyu Chime Long Hotel: Yingbin Road, Panyu District
China Hotel: 122, Liuhua Road, Yuexiu District
Guangzhou Hotel: No. 2, Qiyi Road, Haizhu Square, Yuexiu District
Garden Hotel: 368 Huanshi East Road

Further Reading:

- Last updated on Jun. 01, 2023 by Kate Liu -
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