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Kenya Railways commence passenger transport to Kisumu

By Amina Wako December 16th, 2021 2 min read

Kenyans traveling to and from the Western part of the country have been offered an alternative mode of transport after the Kenya Railway Corporation (KRC) introduced a passenger train from Nairobi to Kisumu.

The services will resume on Friday, three decades after railway transport in the region collapsed.

Kenya Railways managing director Philip Mainga announced that commuters traveling from Nairobi to Kisumu will pay Sh600 aboard the second class coaches and Sh2,000 for first class.

As per the new passenger schedule, a ticket from Nairobi to Nakuru City is being sold at Sh300 for economy class with the train departing at 6.00 am and arriving at 11.30 am.

The train will depart Nakuru at 11.45 am and arrive in Kisumu at 5.45pm, the journey costing Sh400.

From Kisumu the train will depart at 6.00 am and arrive in Nakuru at 1.00 pm costing Sh400.

It will depart Nakuru at 1.10 pm and arrive in Nairobi at 6.10 pm costing Sh300

The train will make a 12-hour journey from Nairobi to Kisumu with a stopover in Nakuru County.

The cooperation also announced another will depart Kisumu for Nairobi on December 19, 2021.

The rehabilitated train has an ultra-modern look, with comfortable seats and coaches that allow passengers to relax as they marvel at the scenery throughout the journey.

The train from Kisumu on the meter gauge rail will terminate its journey at the Naivasha station where passengers will be transferred to SGR via a new 23.5-km link line to Longonot.

The line which stretches 216.7 kilometers has eighteen 18 stations within the network.

Kenya dropped its plan to extend the SGR to Kisumu and later on to the Ugandan border after failing to secure a multibillion-shilling loan from China, which funded the first and second phases of the project.

The old line, which had a thriving passenger service in the 1990s, will form the major supply route to deliver cargo to the neighbouring countries through the Kisumu port.

Plans to upgrade it came after Uganda also announced that it would start refurbishing the old rail network to boost bulk cargo transportation, after failing to secure $2.2 billion in Chinese funding for a new SGR line.

A cargo rail business is critical to making the Kisumu port a viable public investment.

Kenya opened the Mombasa-Nairobi SGR line in 2017 and another new line to Naivasha in 2019.

It plans to link the old railway track to the SGR line in Naivasha for seamless cargo movements to the neighbouring countries.