First new passenger train from Vilnius arrives in Rīga

A new passenger rail connetion between Baltic capitals Vilnius and Rīga launched December 27 amid great fanfare and high ticket demand.

As reported by our colleagues at LRT News, the route is operated by LTG Link, the passenger arm of Lietuvos Geležinkeliai (Lithuanian Railways, LTG), Lithuania’s state-owned railway company.

Arrival of first Vilnius-Rīga train, Dec 27, 2023
Arrival of first Vilnius-Rīga train, Dec 27, 2023

Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Šimonytė and Transport Minister Marius Skuodis were among those on board the first train to the Latvian capital where they were met by their Latvian counterparts, Prime Minister Evika Siliņa and Transport Minister Kaspars Briškens.

"“Many of us have probably tried different ways of travelling between Vilnius and Riga – we flew by plane, drove by car, took the bus. Now these options will be complemented by perhaps the most sustainable way of travelling,” Šimonytė said.

The two Prime Ministers were due to enjoy a working lunch together in the afternoon.

A standard train ticket between the two capitals costs €24 and customers will be able to choose between regular and first class. The train will depart from Vilnius every day at 06:30 with stops at Kaišiadorys, Šiauliai, Joniškis and Jelgava before pulling into Riga Central Station at 10:43, about four hours after setting off. The return trip departs Rīga at 15:28 and pulls into Vilnius at 19:51.

The normal train journey between the two capitals is expected to take about 4 hours 15 minutes – the journey time may change slightly due to infrastructure improvement works. Passengers will be able to travel on a modern Pesa 730 ML diesel train. Both the access to the train and its interior are adapted for people with individual needs and reduced mobility. The train is equipped with heating and ventilation, air conditioning. The train has 142 seats for passengers and 4 bicycle racks. Hot and cold snacks and drinks are available throughout the journey. For children up to 6 years old without taking a separate seat on the train, the trip will not cost anything, and children between the ages of 6 and 16 will get a 30 percent discount.

Travel to Riga will be pet-friendly, with a valid European pet passport and health and hygiene requirements. Small pets in special bags can travel free of charge, while larger pets can travel for a fixed fare of €5. LTG Link also offers international Eurail train tickets, so Eurail ticket holders can also travel between Lithuania and Latvia. 

More information about the international route and ticketing is available on the company's website

There are also plans for a new link between Rīga and the southern Estonian city of Tartu to operate in 2024 when Tartu serves as a European Capital of Culture.

Seen a mistake?

Select text and press Ctrl+Enter to send a suggested correction to the editor

Select text and press Report a mistake to send a suggested correction to the editor

Related articles


Most important