In the new 2024 Timetable entering into force on 10 December 2023, passengers will have more opportunities to surf the Internet, recharge their mobile phones, tablets or laptops, and it will significantly extend barrier-free travel options for people with impaired mobility. In the 2024 Timetable, České dráhy will introduce altogether 8,738 trains, travelling approximately 119 million kilometres during the new annual timetable. Taking into account various travel time restrictions, such as running only on business days or only over weekends or only during certain seasonal periods, České dráhy will run 6,583 connections per day on average.
“Even in the new timetable, our offensive strategy focused on extension and improvement of services through modern trains continues. Thanks to this approach, we will increase the number of barrier-free connections and services in which passengers have access to electrical sockets and USB ports for charging travel electronics by about 550 trains on an annual basis. We are also increasing the number of trains equipped with an on-board Wi-Fi network by approximately 900 trains, which will enable easier access to the Internet and comfortable monitoring of news, social networks, handling e-mails and other activities associated with the Internet,” says Michal Krapinec, Chairman of the Board of Directors and Director General of České dráhy.
In the 2024 Timetable, České dráhy will offer altogether 6,692 barrier-free trains, 495 trains with a storage service during transport and 7,579 trains with extended transport of luggage, especially bicycles (however, almost all of the 8,738 trains operated by České dráhy offer transport of bicycles). A dining car will be available on 63 long-distance services, a bistro car on 93 trains and refreshment delivery in the form of a ČD Minibar service or a vending machine (ČD Snack) will be available on the board of 229 trains. For passengers with children, 495 trains will have dedicated carriages or compartments for passengers with children under 10 years of age, and 75 trains will have a children's cinema. An on-board Wi-Fi network will be available on 4,026 trains, 489 of which being long-distance trains, and 2,754 trains will offer the option of powering travel electronics during the journey. Passengers on 75 long-distance trains will have an on-board infotainment portal.
“The largest changes for the better are waiting especially for passengers with impaired mobility and orientation. In addition to the record-breaking number of barrier-free connections – České dráhy will already have 76% of all trains accessible for people in orthopaedic wheelchairs – the increasing number of trains and railway stations equipped for barrier-free travelling will lead to a new, more precise definition of the symbols of barrier-free travels. The common 'wheelchair accessible' symbol now means the deployment of a direct low-floor vehicle or a vehicle with a lifting platform for which a reservation for transport is not necessary but only recommended. For other passenger groups, it also means that there will be deployed low-floor vehicles which are easy to board for elderly people or passengers with prams and bicycles. The inverted 'wheelchair' symbol will then indicate wheelchair accessible services which require assistance from the carrier, for example to operate the boarding platform, as they have a floor at a conventional height. This type of transport onboard such trains must be ordered in advance,” explains Jiří Ješeta, Member of the Board of Directors and Deputy Director General of ČD for Passenger Transport.
In the 2024 Timetable, České dráhy has introduced altogether 8,738 different trains. Taking into account the restrictions on their operation, e.g., some connections running only on business days, some connections over the weekends or during certain time periods, the daily average of the connections offered is 6,583. For the yearly period, České dráhy are going to dispatch almost 2.5 million trains, which are to travel approximately 119 million kilometres during the Timetable validity. This is a daily average of over train 320,000 kilometres. Approximately two thirds of this transport performance are associated with regional services (ordinary passenger and fast trains) and one-third with long-distance trains. Despite the change of the carrier on several regional railway lines in the Plzeň Region, the total nationwide extent of transport performance provided by České dráhy will be similar to the ending 2023 Timetable.