New, state-of-the-art trains going into operation on Sunday, May 15th will reduce the Athens-Thessaloniki travel time to 4 hours, TrainOSE, the Italian-owned Greek rail operator, said on Friday.
Normally, the travel time between the capital and the major northern city takes closer to 6 hours.
The new ETR470 trains will have nine wagons, including a restaurant/bar and three first-class wagons. Each train has a seating capacity of 600 people.
The ETR 470 trains are not part of the “silver arrow” family of trains that can achieve even greater speeds. Silver arrow trains would travel the Athens-Thessaloniki route in just 3 hours and 20 minutes with a maximum speed capability of up to 250 km/hour. However, technical difficulties have delayed their introduction.
New Athens-Thessaloniki trains will run twice a day
ETR470 trains will run twice a day in each direction:
Leaving Athens at 07:22, the train will stop at Larissa at 09:58, and arrive in Thessaloniki at 11:20. The next train, in the afternoon, will leave Athens at 17:22, stop at Larissa at 20:00, and arrive in Thessaloniki at 21:21.
Leaving Thessaloniki, ETR470 will leave the station at 07:08, stop at Larissa at 08:09, and arrive in Athens at 11:03. The next one, in the afternoon, will leave Thessaloniki at 17:08, stop at Larissa at 18:08 and arrive in Athens at 21:04.
As a promotion, TrainOSE is offering a 20 percent discount for trips between May 15th and June 3rd if tickets are booked in the next 20 days.