Russian Train
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Carriage classes of Russian trains

There are Russian Trains of different types and classes.

Short-distance trips are usually operated by seating trains. They have soft seats like on the plane.

Among seating trains there are express trains which are much faster than regular ones. Express trains operate between Helsinki and Saint-Petersburg (‘Allegro’), Nizhniy Novgorod, Moscow and Saint-Petersburg (‘Sapsan’). You can read more about Sapsan trains at our web-page: Sapsan trains.


Please, have a look at our review and get a brief idea about the various classes in Russian sleeper trains.

Sleeper trains

Most long-distance trains in Russia are sleeper. They enable you to make long distance journeys while having a relaxing night's sleep. You arrive early at your destination, saving a day's travel — or the early morning dash to the airport. Among these trains, there are fast and standard ones. They are almost the same but the travelling time of fast trains is shorter because they make less stops.

Travelling by overnight train in Russia, be sure that whichever class you select, you will get a bunk (berth) for rest or sleep.

The meal can be included or not. If your ticket includes ‘services’ it always means a lunchbox, and in some trains newspapers and hygiene set.

Also most trains have a restaurant carriage where you can have lunch or dinner:

There are several types of carriages, generally divided into three classes:

1) First class, also known as ‘SV’ (in Russian – ‘СВ’) or ‘Luxe’, is the most comfortable type of carriage. Usually a first class carriage has 9 separate cabins and 2 toilets.
This is the example of a first class carriage scheme:

The view of a corridor in the first class carriage:

The cabin consists of two bunks (usually both bunks are lower) and a table:

Some trains have compartments with one lower and one upper bunk (one over another):

Compartment amenities:

2 berths,
Fold-down table between the seats,
Personal reading lights,
Storage space under the lower bunks,
Sliding door.

2) Second class is known as ‘coupe’. The second class carriage consists of 9 separate quardruple compartments.

The view of a corridor in the second class carriage:

The cabin consists of four bunks (2 lower and 2 upper) and a table:

Compartment amenities:

2 Upper and 2 lower berths,
Fold-down table between the seats,
Personal reading lights,
Storage space (built-in shelves over the door, boxes under the lower bunks, racks on the wall beside each bunk),
Sliding door.

For safer and more comfortable trips some trains offer ‘female only’ and ‘male only’ compartments. So, having purchased a ticket at a ‘female’ compartment you can be sure that only women will be your neighbors.

3) Third class is known as ‘platskart’. It is the cheapest option on long-distance trains.
The carriage consists of 54 bunks, arranged in bays of 4 on one side and bays of 2 on another, with an aisle between the two sides. At the ends of the carriage there are toilets.
There is no privacy in such type of carriage and it is rather noisy there, so travelling in the third class is a choice of those who value economy more than comfort.

Have a look at a third class carriage:

The side bunks are over and under the window. When the passenger is not sleeping, lower side bunk transforms to a table and two seats:

Compartment amenities:
  • 2 Upper and 2 lower berths on one side and two side bunks (upper and lower) on the other,
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