Royal Railway Airport Shuttle Train: Phnom Penh International Airport to Phnom Penh Railway Station by Train

The Royal Railway Airport Shuttle Train is Cambodia’s first airport rail link, connecting Phnom Penh International Airport in Pochentong to Phnom Penh Railway Station in the heart of the city. The journey time takes around 40 minutes, with trains running at about 90 minute intervals, 24 hours a day.

Fares for the Airport Shuttle Train are free of charge from 10 April to 31 July 2018.

This article is outdated.

Please click here to read my latest journey with the new Mexican DMUs.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 01

Royal Railway has a counter at the Phnom Penh International Airport arrival hall should you have any queries, and presumably to sell tickets for the Airport Shuttle Train here from 1 August 2018 onwards.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 02

Fares for the Airport Shuttle Train are free of charge from 10 April to 31 July 2018.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 03

However, the Airport Shuttle Train is actually running every 90 minutes rather than 30 minutes as advertised. This will hopefully change once the three new diesel railcars from Mexico arrive.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 04

Follow the signs around the terminal building to get to the Airport Shuttle Train.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 05

You may find it easier to walk across the car park should it get too congested in the terminal building.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 06Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 11

The Phnom Penh International Airport Railway Station is located across the car park.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 11

If it’s raining, you can walk by the food outlets where there is a little bit of shelter.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 07

Signs are available in Khmer, English, French, Mandarin (albeit incorrect), Korean and Japanese.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 08

Head up the ramp to the waiting room.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 10Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 20

The Phnom Penh International Airport Railway Station waiting room is air-conditioned with ample seats for you to wait for the Airport Shuttle Train.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 21

There is also a manned counter for service information should you have any queries, and presumably to sell tickets as well from 1 August 2018 onwards.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 12Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 13Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 14

The platform of Phnom Penh International Airport Railway Station.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 15

Towards the end of the line, there is a tree stump, probably for the driver to get off the locomotive easily.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 16

The makeshift buffer stop at the end of the line. Don’t think it will actually stop anything though.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 17Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 18

The view of Phnom Penh International Airport from the railway station.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 19

As the station is located within the compounds of Phnom Penh International Airport, the railway station is fenced up with a gate for trains to enter.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 22

The line will cross Russian Federation Boulevard to run on 105K Street to reach the main line.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 23Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 24

When the train is arriving, the Royal Railway staff will head out on the road to stop vehicles from passing.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 25Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 26Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 27

The Airport Shuttle Train crossing Russian Federation Boulevard to Phnom Penh International Airport.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 28Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 29Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 30

The Airport Shuttle Train entering Phnom Penh International Airport Railway Station.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 31Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 32

The Airport Shuttle Train only operated with a single locomotive on a Saturday.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 33

Passengers boarding the Airport Shuttle Train at Phnom Penh International Airport Railway Station.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 34Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 35

The hauling locomotive is manufactured in Czechoslovakia in 1994.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 37

Royal Railway uses the buffers and chain coupling for most of their trains.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 36

Boarding the Airport Shuttle Train.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 38Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 39

The interior of the Airport Shuttle Train coach. Longitudinal seating is adopted to maximize passenger capacity including standees. The Airport Shuttle Train is treated as a tram or light rail system.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 40

Departing from Phnom Penh International Airport Railway Station.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 41

As the rear is operated without a locomotive, the crew radios back to the locomotive driver at the back if the line is clear or not.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 42Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 43

Crossing Russian Federation Boulevard to head onto 105K Street.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 44Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 45

The crew at the rear of the train also tells motorists to get away from the tracks.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 46Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 47

Motorists getting away from the train at 105K Street.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 48Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 49Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 50

Approaching the junction to the main line at Tang Korsang.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 51Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 52Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 53

Taking a left turn to the main line, which actually heads toward Sihanoukville, Poipet, Bangkok, Vientiane, Kuala Lumpur and Woodlands CIQ instead of a right turn direct to Phnom Penh. This slight detour and change of direction is so that no building was needed to be demolished to make way for the Airport Shuttle Train.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 54Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 55

Merging with the main line at Tang Korsang.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 56Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 57

Looking towards Sihanoukville, Poipet, Bangkok, Vientiane, Kuala Lumpur and Woodlands CIQ.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 58

Heading to Phnom Penh on the main line.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 59Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 60Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 61

Splitting away from the Airport branch line on 105K Street.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 62

Time for a quick visit to the very clean washroom.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 63

Most of the main line runs through houses lined on both sides of the track.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 64

The Airport Shuttle Train is cooled by 5 units of Panasonic Inverter air-conditioners.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 65Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 66

Overhead grab rails are also installed for standing passengers. However, the ride was smooth enough for me not to hold onto anything when walking inside the coach.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 67Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 68

Approaching Phnom Penh Railway Station with the view of disused locomotive sheds on the right side.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 69Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 70Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 71Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 72Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 73

Some old car bodies lined at the side in front of the locomotive shed. Hopefully Royal Railway has plans to refurbish them into working coaches again to boost passenger capacity on their trains.

Fun fact: All passenger coaches in Royal Railway were refurbished for the railway revival – there were no new coaches purchased.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 74

Entering Phnom Penh Railway Station.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 75Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 76

Arrived at Phnom Penh Railway Station. The journey took 37 minutes.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 77

Phnom Penh Railway Station is located in the heart of Phnom Penh with most attractions accessible from here within a 2km radius.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 78

The maintenance staff topping up fuel for the generator providing hotel power to the coach.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 81

The Airport Shuttle Train at Phnom Penh Railway Station.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 82Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 83

The builder plate of the ČKD Praha locomotive. ČKD (Českomoravská Kolben-Daněk) was one of the largest engineering companies in the former Czechoslovakia and today’s Czech Republic.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 79Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 84

Upon arrival, you’ll be approached by lots of Grab signs.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 94Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 95Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 96

If you need a ride from the station, just key in GRABTRAIN in the promo code box to get a free ride of up to KHR 12,000 value. A typical 5-minute ride away costs KHR 3,000 so this free ride gets you pretty far I’d say. This promotion is for both new and existing users. I’m guessing that this promotion should be valid till 31 July 2018, along with the free travel on the Airport Shuttle Train.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 85

The Airport Shuttle Train departing back to Phnom Penh International Airport.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 89

In the station, there’s lots of improvements since the last time I visited 2 years ago. Lots of seats are available in the waiting hall now.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 90

A new coffee stall aptly named Restart Coffee is also in place.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 87

Self check-in counters are also available at Phnom Penh Railway Station if you’d like to check-in while waiting for your train.

Note that these computers simply link you to the airlines’ websites for you to complete the online check-in process and print your A4-sized boarding pass. It does not allow you to check your bags at the station.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 88

The future rolling stock of the Airport Shuttle Train.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 92

The refreshed facade of Phnom Penh Railway Station.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 91

From here, Vattanac Capital is located just outside of the station, and Central Market is just a 5-minute walk away. You can also get on the KK STAR LRT shuttle bus service or Grab for free around the city area as mentioned above.

Airport Shuttle Train Airport Phnom Penh 93

Overall, the Airport Shuttle Train does not exactly shave travel time between the airport and city taking the waiting time into account – I waited 50 minutes for the Airport Shuttle Train, bringing the total travel time including waiting to 87 minutes for the 10.2 km ride.

However, it is important to note that this locomotive-hauled train is only an interim arrangement to open the Airport branch line on time as the delivery for the three new diesel railcars from Mexico are delayed. This would hopefully change once the three new diesel railcars from Mexico arrive should Royal Railway operate the service with two separate railcars and having them cross behind each other at Tang Korsang junction.

Nevertheless, this is a great start for a revived railway to operate the first airport rail link in the country, and with the right attitudes and concrete short term plans already in place, the train service would only get better from here.

This article is outdated.

Please click here to read my latest journey with the new Mexican DMUs.

Advertisements

7 thoughts on “Royal Railway Airport Shuttle Train: Phnom Penh International Airport to Phnom Penh Railway Station by Train

  1. Warren says:

    I like trains so will use this service always now. It can take more than 37 minutes to get downtown sometimes anyway even using a motorbike taxi. And that’s not very comfortable and breathing smog. Phnom Penh traffic gets worse every day. Well done to royal railway getting this train up and running so quickly.

  2. David Johnson says:

    I would like to use the train, but on 4 occasions now I have tried to use it but is never running, A few week ago I tried again to use it but I was told that I would have to wait over an hour. This was to long to wait so I had to use the dreaded Tuk Tuk. If you kept to your time table I am sure it will become popular. But as it is it is not worth even trying.
    David

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.