Coming in from my Railbus Lembah Anai from Kayu Tanam, I headed to the ticket counter of Lubuk Alung station to check on ticket availability for the next KA Sibinuang train for me to get back to Padang. As tickets for the KA Sibinuang are only sold at KA Sibinuang-departing stations, I could not get a go-show ticket beforehand at Kayu Tanam.
A deja vu feeling here as tickets for the next train to Padang is sold out, just like my previous trip to Pariaman.
Luckily, I had pre-purchased my ticket a day before from Padang just as I came in from the airport. If you have a chance to pre-purchase your tickets, you should always do so as tickets for mainline trains in Indonesia are always in high demand. Tickets are open for reservations for local trains 7 days before departure.
Once done, I headed to the gates just before the platform to wait for the KA Sibinuang.
Right on time, the train enters the station from Pariaman.
The KA Sibinuang and Railbus Lembah Anai side by side.
My KA Sibinuang today is hauled by BB 303 78 01.
Once the gates to the platforms are open, passengers swarm to the train. As the station is too small to check tickets properly with a definitely boundary for checked passengers, tickets are checked just before boarding the train at every coach by train staff of all jobs.
The view of my initial standing spot in a random coach, which got a little too uncomfortable for my liking.
I headed to my actual seat at Coach 4 Seat 3A, but an old lady was already in it and sleeping. Not wanting to reclaim my seat from a sleeping old lady, I just stood for the journey.
The opposing KA Sibinuang enters the station as well, on the way to Pariaman, just before my train is due to depart. Every train crossing schedule seems to be dealt with precision in Indonesia.
After about half an hour, the train enters Duku, the junction station for the Minangkabau International Airport line.
The train then proceeds on to Tabing and Air Tawar, where most passengers alighted.
The emptied-out train car upon arrival at Padang.
A unique model of coaches in Indonesia here in Padang, it is of a slimmer design as compared to those operating in Java, with a 2+2 seating configuration instead of 3+2.
Each bay of seats come with a pair of power sockets.
The route map of the KA Sibinuang.
Surprisingly, the train enters Line 2 (Platform 3) instead of Line 3, so it’s a convenient level-step off the train here.
From here, I headed out of the station to catch a Grab back to my hotel.
Overall, I had used the KA Sibinuang just as a mode of transport this time to ride on the Railbus Lembah Anai, as I had already completed the journey from Padang to Pariaman on the full route of the KA Sibinuang on my previous trip. It still was an uncomfortable standing journey, but the shorter standing time on this trip along with the extremely low PSO fares and the opportunity to get on the Railbus Lembah Anai makes it all worthwhile.