Day 25-27: Beijing Subway

Beijing has a vast network of subway lines and getting around Beijing by subway is reasonably convenient. To avoid long queues at the subway stations to buy a single journey ticket, I suggest you use an Yikatong (一卡通) which is the travel smart card of Beijing for your travels. Fares are distance-based starting from just 3 yuan (S$0.61).

Line 1 (operated by Beijing Mass Transit Railway Operation)

Opened in 1969, it is the first line opened on the Beijing Subway, though its current alignment is not of its original. It offers convenient access to Xidan and Yong’anli commercial districts, as well as Tian’anmen.


The newer SFM04 trainset manufactured by CRRC Qingdao Sifang and Beijing Subway Rolling Stock Equipment.



The older DKZ4 trainset manufactured by CRRC Changchun Railway Vehicles and Beijing Subway Rolling Stock Equipment.

Line 2 (operated by Beijing Mass Transit Railway Operation)

Line 2 is a circle line within the city, and is the second oldest line in the network. It serves the ever-important Beijing Railway Station and Beijing North Railway Station, the Tian’anmen at Qianmen and Dongzhimen for the Airport Express.



The DKZ16 trainset manufactured by CRRC Changchun Railway Vehicles and Beijing Subway Rolling Stock Equipment.

As the trains on Line 2 operate continuously with no defined terminals on passenger maps, trains operate as running on the inner loop or outer loop. The exterior destination signs will display the next station’s name instead of the running loop.


The ticket office at Beijing Railway Station, one of the busiest subway stations in the network.

Line 4 & Daxing Line (operated by Beijing MTR)

Line 4 and Daxing Line operate as a single line although the official maps will depict them as running on separate lines. They offer access to Beijing North Railway Station, Beijing South Railway Station and Huangcun Railway Station. This line is operated by Beijing MTR, a subsidiary of MTR Corporation based in Hong Kong.


If you have been to Hong Kong before, the station’s design and signs may look a little familiar to you.


The interior of the SFM05 trainset manufactured by CRRC Qingdao Sifang also bear similar characteristics as the trains that are operating in Hong Kong. The most iconic, however, might be the familiar in-train announcements and the door closing beeps.

The information screen’s layout is similar to the other Chinese-made trains though, a reminder that you are still in Beijing.

Line 9 (operated by Beijing Mass Transit Railway Operation)

Line 9 serves the major Beijing West Railway Station. This single station makes up most of the passenger traffic on the line.


The interior of the DKZ33 trainset manufactured by CRRC Changchun Railway Vehicles.

The platforms of Line 9 at Beijing West Railway Station.

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