High-speed rail passengers will be able to pre-order meal in China

High-speed rail passengers will be able to pre-order meal in China
China Railway High-speed Harmony bullet trains are seen at a high-speed train maintenance base in Wuhan, Hubei province, early December 25, 2012
PHOTO: Reuters

Passengers travelling on 27 major high-speed rail stations will be able to pre-order meals online that will be delivered to their seats from July 17, according to Beijing-based China Youth Daily.

The move marks China's railway offering more food and beverage options to travellers for the first time.

Passengers taking G or D-bullet trains or electric multiple unit (EMU) trains will be able to order food through 12306.cn website and app and the meal will be delivered to their seats.

Travelers will be prompted about ordering meals when booking the ticket via 12306.cn.

The web page will display multiple types of box lunches and snacks. Passengers can pay through Alipay and WeChat. The staff members will take the ordered food to the passengers during meal time.

The railway authorities scrapped the rule that passengers had to be provided the 15 yuan (S$2.80) meal box on Jan 1.

"The trains could sell the 15 yuan package or not, but it is no longer mandatory that the railway staff members have to provide the meal," said Huang Xin, deputy director of the operation department of the transportation bureau of China Railway Corp.

To meet the varied demands, the railway department has developed over 400 kinds of food, with the price as low as 10 yuan for dumplings, steamed buns and bread.

According to an official, all the food and beverage products could be sold at marked prices on 12306.cn.

The railway will supervise qualifications of vendors, conditions of food producers in accordance with national laws and regulations to provide safe food for travellers.

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