BANGKOK: Thailand has launched the Hatyai-Padang Besar railway service to connect with Malaysia’s express trains, reports Thai News Agency (TNA).
Wuthichart Kalyanamitra, Governor of the State Railway of Thailand (SRT), and his Malaysian counterpart Sarbini Tijan, Keretapi Tanah Melayu Bhd (KTMB) President, jointly presided over a ceremony to launch the new cross-border train service at the Hatyai railway junction in Songkhla Province in the Thai Far South Monday morning.
The air-conditioned train runs from Hatyai to the Padang Besar border town to connect with Malaysia’s express train services from Padang Besar to Butterworth, Ipoh and Kuala Lumpur.
The new transnational train service is a major step to support the ASEAN Community (AC), scheduled to be formed by the end of this year, and facilitates the transport of cargoes, travellers and workers between both neighbouring countries in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
Initially, four trips are operated on the route daily and the fare is 80 baht (about RM9) all the way, including the Hatyai-Padang Besar morning trip that departs at 7:30am and reaches the destination at 8:25am.
The new service connects to six trains from Padang Besar to the other destinations. Passengers can undergo immigration procedures at the Padang Besar 1 station in Malaysia.