Member since 10 Aug 2015
Total posts 29
Having gone through Sydney Melbourne airports / security / taxis / sheer boredom each day this week, it feels like an incredibly inefficient door to door experience. For my next work trip to Melbourne I am considering taking a sleeper on the overnight XPT, departs around 8pm and arrives around 7am. It's not cheap but feels like it will be a much more pleasant journey. I don't like flying, airports, or taxis (especially taxis) so this should be a good option, anything I am not considering?
Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer
Member since 28 Sep 2011
Total posts 302
Even "express" trains stop and start quite a bit for all sorts of reasons, so if you aren't used to overnight trains you may not sleep as much as you'd hope. It can be fun though, watching the countryside flash by under moonlight, and you do get used to the rocking motion. The XPT is not as deluxe as when the Southern Aurora was making the trip, so just be aware of toilet and shower arrangements before you go. Southern Cross station at 7am is fairly unattractive, but you're only a few minutes away from breakfast at your hotel. I hope you'll enjoy the "retro" experience. I did the trip many times back in the day.
Emirates Airlines - Skywards
Member since 30 Nov 2015
Total posts 419
I'm just back from a trip to Germany, from Frankfurt Airport to Cologne city the ICE Inter City Express does 300km and gets to Cologne main Station in 55 minutes. The infrastructure there is amazing. The XPT that we have is no match, for train from Australia's two biggest cities it is simply appauling. For some time speed was so reduce in northern Victoria due to poor track condition, that slowing down was the solution to bad infrasture problems, it got so bad you used to get bussed part of the way. It's like everything here now, it takes longer, costs more, and apparently is world class, possibly third world class - they forget to tell us that bit. Train travel from Sydney to Melbourne should be a real alternative to flying, I also hate any domestic flight, overcrowded, poor service, huge worry and security issues make the entire thing awful. The Southern Aurora and the Spirit of Progress were the way to go. Sadly, no more.
Member since 25 Mar 2014
Total posts 198
Try teleporting much more pleasant
Member since 21 Apr 2012
Total posts 2,058
Really? How is flying not fun?
Yes taxis are a bore, which is why I take an uber. It's great chatting to uber drivers - there is a camaraderie and you feel like rebel alliance giving it to the establishment!
Uber is illegal in Victoria.
Member since 17 Dec 2013
Total posts 18
I do the overnight train a bit. It is a good alternative to a late night or early morning flight to Melbourne, particularly when I'm not in an airport mood. I'm not quite sure why more people don't utilise the train nor why the crowd running it doesn't market it better.
It's not luxurious (but neither is Dom Y travel). It is, however, quite comfortable and relaxing
The trick to get yourself allocated an empty compartment. You share the shower/toilet with the compartment next door. Towels are provided. I take a bottle of wine on and am asleep by Goulburn and wake up around Seymour, shower, get dressed, get brought some toast and coffee and am in the CBD at 7.30am ready for work
Unfortunately, arrival/departure times on the SYD - BNE run are not convenient so I don't use that.
Member since 12 Feb 2014
Total posts 61
That sounds pretty good Andrew. Much more relaxing. The NSW Government will be replacing current trains, so lets hope the service is given a significant boost.
Rolling stock in this country is embarassingly old, 40 years old on XPT. NSW and VIC Govt's should be coughing up real money to fix this.
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Having gone through Sydney Melbourne airports / security / taxis / sheer boredom each day this week, it feels like an incredibly inefficient door to door experience.
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