By Bonface Otieno
Kenya Railways Corporation (KRC) has added eight passenger coaches on the standard gauge railway (SGR) train service between Nairobi and Mombasa to accommodate more commuters during the busy Easter holiday period.
Kenya Railways acting Managing Director Philip Mainga said Friday the company had raised the number of coaches from nine to 14 for economy-class passengers on the express train from Mombasa to Nairobi and on the inter-county train from Nairobi to Mombasa.
The corporation has also added three coaches on the express train from Nairobi to Mombasa and on the inter-county train from Mombasa to Nairobi.
But the two coaches for first-class passengers in the express and the inter-county trains will remain the same in the new service plan set to take effect on April 17.
The train is currently pulling nine coaches (1,062 passengers) on economy-class tickets and two coaches (138 passengers) on first-class tickets.
“We are adding eight more coaches on the Madaraka Express train in both the express and inter-county trains,” Mr Mainga said
“The move is aimed at accommodating more passengers who will be travelling on the route to go and celebrate with their families from April 17 to April 23,” he said.
The SGR passenger train service between the two cities was launched in June 2017.
The trains have been departing daily from both directions, offering a four-and-a-half-hour non-stop connection.
Kenya Railways charges first-class and economy passengers Sh3, 000 and Sh1,000 respectively.
The inter-county service train that was launched December 2017 charges Sh50 from Mombasa to Mariakani, Sh230 from Voi to Kibwezi, Sh130 from Athi River to Emali, Sh510 from Nairobi to Voi and Sh400 from Emali to Maisenyi on economy-class coaches.
In first class, passengers have been paying Sh140 from Mombasa to Mariakani, Sh920 from Voi to Kibwezi, Sh660 from Athi River to Emali, Sh2,130 from Nairobi to Voi and Sh1,670 from Emali to Maisenyi.
Kenya Railways has steadily increased coaches on the Nairobi-Mombasa line since the SGR was launched in June 2017 to match rising demand.
Each train has a capacity for 1,260 passengers with 15 economy-class and three first-class coaches.