There are three different ticket options for train accommodations to Tibet, such as hard seats, hard sleeper compartments and soft sleeper compartments.
The soft sleeper compartments are the first-class option of the train journey. There are four berths in each compartment on two bunks. The beds with pillows and quilts on them are clean and comfortable and are spacious enough for tall passengers. All the compartments have plenty of luggage space respectively beneath the lower berths and beside the upper berths. There are a table, oxygen outlets, mini televisions, and clothes hangers equipped in them. Furthermore, a lockable door to every single soft sleeper compartment exists for quietness and security.
Soft Sleeper Compartments
The hard sleeper compartments are the second-class option, with six berths in each compartment on three bunks. The name “hard sleeper” is usually misunderstood by foreign guests, and the beds are just the same as the soft sleeper berths. The hard sleeper tickets are much cheaper than the soft sleeper tickets, but the compartments are more crowded, less secure, and open to the aisle of the train because there is no door. There is a little less room for each berth, and with only some luggage space beneath the lower berths. Although, it is comfortable enough for most passengers.
Hard Sleeper Compartments
The hard seats with no compartment are the cheapest option for traveling to Tibet, but they are not recommended for a long-distance train journey. You are not able to lie down to get good sleep, which is something you need before arriving in Tibet to help you acclimatize to the high altitude. The hard seats are usually taken by local people who need cheap tickets to Tibet and back.
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The Tibet train has relatively complete facilities for providing a comfortable and pleasant journey. All three carriages of the train have big windows which offer a good view of the Tibetan plateau along the journey, and they are equipped with both Chinese and western toilets, washing areas, shaver power plugs, and boiling water for making tea, coffee, instant noodles, etc. The only problem is the lack of a shower room. Therefore, it is advisable to use the bathrooms early in the morning and evening, as they can get crowded and queued with the number of passengers that travel on each train.