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Xining - Lhasa Train

Xining to Lhasa trains and Lhasa to Xining trains are running back and forth along Tibet Railway with the total distance of 1,956 km (1,215 mi). Currently, 5 pairs of trains are available daily with the journey time of about 21 - 21.5 hours. Ticket price is CNY 521 for a hard sleeper and CNY 808 for a soft sleeper.

Basic Facts:

 Open date: July 1st, 2006
 Duration: about 21 - 21.5 hours
 Distances: 1,956 km (1,215 mi)
 Top speed: 120 - 160 km/h (75 - 99 mph)
 Major station along the way: Delingha, Golmud, Naqu

​Xining to Lhasa Train Schedule

(Last Update on Apr 25, 2023)
Train No.Departure - ArrivalTravel Time
Z32312:20 - 10:15+21h55m
Z91713:30 - 11:17+21h47m
Z2115:20 - 12:29+21h9m
Z26519:43 - 16:56+21h13m
Z16521:23 - 18:46+21h23m
Z681121:50 - 19:56+22h6m
See more Xining Schedule

​​Lhasa to Xining Train Timetable

(Last Update on Apr 25, 2023)
Train No.Departure - ArrivalTravel Time
Z91809:00 - 06:30+21h30m
Z16611:30 - 09:18+21h48m
Z26612:40 - 10:31+21h51m
Z2215:50 - 13:25+21h35m
Z681217:50 - 15:28+21h38m
Z22419:00 - 16:36+21h36m
1. The above timetable is only for reference. Please search for the real-time schedule via the search box on page top.
2. "+" means the second day.

​Xining - Lhasa Train Ticket Fare

(Last Update on Apr 25, 2023)
Soft SleeperHard SleeperHard Seat
CNY 816
USD 120
CNY 529
USD 78
CNY 224
USD 33
Tibet Railway is the first and only railway connecting Tibet with other areas of China, providing tourists another way to reach Tibet other than flight. The scenery along the way is amazing, including grassland, gobi, snow-capped mountains, and you may even see rare animals. It is also the world’s highest railway. When traveling on it, you’d better bring some medicines to protect you from high mountain sickness. Also, Tibet Travel Permit is required from overseas travelers to Tibet. 

​Xining - Lhasa Trains vs. Flights

Up to now, there are 5 flights flying from Xining to Lhasa and 4 flights vice versa. Among these flights, one pair of them are operated on every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. The departure time at Xining Caojiabao Airport is from 10:05 to 14:50, and the departure time at Lhasa Gonggar International Airport is from 13:10 - 15:40. 
Schedule Duration Ticket Fares 
Trains 6 pairs a day About 21 - 21.5 hours CNY 521/ 540
for hard sleeper
Flights 4 or 5 pairs a day About 2.5 hours CNY 550 - 1,850
for economy class seat
Passengers who want to save time are recommended to take a flight to transport between the 2 cities, but be sure to be prepared for the possibility of having altitude sickness after landing. On the other hand, taking trains is more suitable for passengers who want to save money and have sufficient time; also, the trains allow passengers to gradually adopt to the high altitude climate; but be prepared for the long journey time on trains.

Major Rail Lines from Xining to:
Major Rail Lines from Lhasa to:
- Last updated on Apr. 25, 2023 -
Questions & Answers on Xining - Lhasa Train
Asked by Ahmet | Mar. 22, 2023 22:09Reply
Is the Lhasa to Xining railway still active?
Hello, I'm thinking of going to China after Nepal and I want to go from Lhasa to Xining by train or the cheapest way you can suggest
Answers (1)
Answered by Woosley | Mar. 22, 2023 22:37

Yes, there are about 8 trains from Lhasa to Xining presently, taking around 21.5 hours.
Asked by Franco from AUSTRALIA | Jan. 07, 2020 23:50Reply
When can I buy tickets for trip in April?
Answers (1)
Answered by Casey from USA | Jan. 08, 2020 16:58

I read that ticket can be booked since the 30th day before train date.
Asked by Lucas from USA | Jun. 04, 2019 20:52Reply
How long it takes to change trains at Xining Station?
I will come from Xi'an direction and then change train to Lhasa. I am wondering how many hours would be needed?
Answers (1)
Answered by Oden | Jun. 05, 2019 18:32

For other routes, I think 30min would do. However, if for a trip to Lhasa, I think it would be better if you prepare at least 1 hour. I guess the security check and travel document would take extra time. The ticket enter Tibet is very hard to get, so you'd better be there early in advance and do not miss it!
Asked by Melinda from AUSTRALIA | Feb. 13, 2019 00:32Reply
Are these trains to Lhasa in service every day?
I heard that most of them runs on certain days each week? Is this true? If I book the tickets with you, how do I get the tickets?
Answers (1)
Answered by TravelChinaGuide | Feb. 14, 2019 17:55

Thank you for your inquiry.
These rides from Xining run daily, but some routes run every next day, for example Chengdu and Chongqing. Booking with us, we offer two different ways for ticket collection. You can collect the real paper ticket at railway station ticket counter by yourself or you can use our delivery service to have the real paper tickets delivered to your hotel in China. You can see detailed options in our booking form. Thank you.
Asked by Matthews | Nov. 06, 2018 00:14Reply
Do I need a Tibet travel permit to book the tickets with you?
Answers (1)
Answered by TravelChinaGuide | Nov. 07, 2018 00:45

Thank you for your inquiry.
We are pleased to offer ticket booking service for you. To book the tickets, we only need your passport information. However, to board the train, you need to hold both paper tickets and the Tibet travel permit. Hope this can help you.
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