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Xi'an - Lhasa Train

Currently, 3 pairs of normal speed trains are operated between Xi'an Railway Station and Lhasa Railway Station with journey time of 30 - 37 hours. High Speed trains are yet not available. These 3 pairs of non-bullet trains run for a distance of 2,864 km (1,780 mi). All of them end/originate in Lhasa Railway Station. In the other end, all of them stop at Xi'an Railway Station while one pair also stop at Xi'an South Railway Station. One thing to note is that Z917/918 are operated every other day. 

Xi'an to Lhasa Train Schedule

(Last Update on Feb. 1, 2023)
Train No. Departure - Arrival Travel Time
Z265 09:54 - 15:45+ 29H51M
Z165 11:22 - 19:30+ 32H8M
Z917 23:50 - 11:20++ 35H30M
See more Xi'an Schedule 

Lhasa to Xi'an Train Timetable

(Last Update on Feb. 1, 2023)
Train No. Departure - Arrival Travel Time
Z918 09:00 - 20:01+ 35H1M
Z166 11:30 - 20:34+ 33H4M
Z266 12:40 - 21:46+ 33H6M
See more Lhasa Schedule

1. "+" means the second day; "++" means the third day.
2. The timetable is for reference only. For real-time schedule, please search for it by the tool on top of the page.

Xi'an - Lhasa Train Ticket Price

(Last Update on Apr 25, 2023)
Soft SleeperHard SleeperHard Seat
CNY 1,011.5
USD 149
CNY 654.5
USD 96
CNY 293.5
USD 43

A sleeper is greatly recommended if you will travel long by rail. Otherwise, the long journey will make you dog-tired. And in most cases, the sleeper tickets are in a great demand, so you should purchase tickets in advance.

Flights VS. Trains

In addition, flight is a good choice for those who are pressed for time and want to make a quick transfer between the two cities. Usually, flight travel will take 3.5 – 5 hours or so. Compared with rail travel, it saves a lot of time, but the tickets will cost a lot. It is not recommended for those budget travelers. Also, you will miss the land sceneries along the way if taking a flight.

Please note that the Tibet Travel Permit is required for foreign tourists who want to visit Tibet. You are advised to get the permit beforehand and you need to show this permit when you check in at the railway station or airport.

Travel Tips of Xi'an and Lhasa

Since the opening of Tibet Railway on July 1st, 2006, traveling to Lhasa by train has been a preferable choice. If you start your trip from Xi'an to Lhasa by train, you can not only know about the city which has cultivated ancient Chinese civilization and is well-known to the whole world for the Terracotta Army, but also have a chance to view the majestic plains, mountains ranges, grasslands, rivers and lakes along the way. Upon arrival, you can experience the truly charm of the mysterious Tibet.

Major Cities along the way

Lanzhou is known as the key point for Silk Road in ancient times and nowadays, it is also a main stop for the Silk Road Tour. Around this city, you can easily reach the famous attraction sites such as Maiji Caves, Bingling Temple Grottoes and Dunhuang Mogao Caves. Lanzhou is also a major transportation hub which connects the western and central China. From there, you can easily go to other major cities by train or flight.
 Xining is a good place to go in summer because of its cool weather. From there, you can appreciate the Qinghai Lake with beautiful natural sceneries. Besides, the Bird Island, Ta'er Monastery and Northern Buddhist Temple around this city are highly recommended. As one of the major stops along Lanzhou-Xinjiang High Speed Rail Line, you can also take bullet trains from here to Xinjiang quickly.
 Located in the northern part of Tibet Autonomous Region, Nakchu is a city embraced by mountains. When you go there, you will see the snow-capped mountains below the blue sky and white cloud. You can travel to Namtso Lake and Changtang pasture which are the famous tourist destinations in this city. 

Major Rail Lines from Xi'an to:
Major Rail Lines from Lhasa to:
- Last updated on Apr. 25, 2023 by Brenda Lian -
Questions & Answers on Xi'an - Lhasa Train
Asked by Lorraine from FINLAND | Jan. 02, 2020 19:31Reply
If I book tickets for April 2020 in advance now, will I get bigger chance of ticket?
Answers (1)
Answered by TravelChinaGuide | Jan. 05, 2020 16:24

Thank you for your inquiry.

Train tickets only released for sale 30 days within departure date. We can only try for ticket after they released for sale, even for advanced booking. Therefore, we are sorry that ticket cannot be 100% guaranteed for advanced booking either. However, we will surely try our best. If there is no ticket available, we will try to find transfer option for you, for example a transfer in Xining or Lanzhou. Hope for your kind understanding.
Asked by Jeremy from NETHERLANDS | Aug. 17, 2019 23:50Reply
Ticket Xi'an to Lhasa 15 sept and Lhasa Xi'an 29sept
Hello, is it possible to get a soft sleeper from Xi'an to Lhasa on the 15th of sept? And a hard sleeper on the 29th of sept from Lhasa to Xi'an?
Answers (1)
Answered by Gwendolyn from USA | Aug. 18, 2019 20:34

The tickets to Lhasa on Sep 15 are already not available. I suppose the return trip is not possible to get either. I read that people need to go to Xining first.
Asked by Ashley | May. 30, 2019 03:12Reply
No sleeper ticket for sale from Xi'an to Lhasa on any date?
Answers (1)
Answered by TravelChinaGuide | May. 30, 2019 18:59

Thank you for your inquiry.

There is indeed hardly tickets available from Xi'an to Lhasa. The tickets to and from Tibet are under great control. For both trains, Xi'an is only a stopover station therefore there is hard tickets offered. You may consider a transfer in Xining or flight instead. Sorry for the inconvenience caused.
Asked by Bryson from SAO TOME AND PRINCIPE | Feb. 12, 2019 01:58Reply
If I book the tickets with you, can you issue the Tibet travel permit for me?
What is the cost?
Answers (1)
Answered by TravelChinaGuide | Feb. 12, 2019 19:12

Thank you for your inquiry.
However, we are sorry that we cannot offer Tibet travel permit for train ticket booking service. If you book Tibet tour package with us, we can help with the travel permit for free.
Asked by xiantolhasa from JAPAN | Dec. 12, 2017 22:32Reply
Does the Train Stop Along the Way for Food/Drink/Etc? Or Should I make sure to pack lots of food?
Answers (1)
Answered by Jerome from UNITED KINGDOM | Dec. 13, 2017 04:32

There is food for sale in dining carriage if it is a long trip. You can also choose to buy some food of your own with you.
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