EN Jan Kiepura to finish in December

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Tom C

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Very sad!

Used this many times as a gateway to Minsk, Vilnius and Krakow because it had a sensible arrival time in Warsaw.

I take it the only option to Warsaw now is going via Berlin?
 
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30907

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Very sad!

Used this many times as a gateway to Minsk, Vilnius and Krakow because it had a sensible arrival time in Warsaw.

I take it the only option to Warsaw now is going via Berlin?

Depends where from - the demise of EN446/7 is an inevitable consequence of DB withdrawing all CNL trains. There is some hope that ÖBB will take over some routes in simplified form, but Zürich-Berlin is the only likely candidate - CD have already said that Köln-Prague will go.

Duesseldorf -Wien-Warsaw would be a possibility, but slow!
 
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STEVIEBOY1

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It probably shows how uneconomic these services are now that CD and PKP aren't willing to run them on their own ticket as Open Access services...


I am not sure if it was the same tyrain, but I was at Koln HBF about 2130 hrs a year ago and there was a sleeper train, that came in and was going to Berlin, where I think it may have been split as the destinations I think were Berlin adn Prague.
 

Ianno87

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I am not sure if it was the same tyrain, but I was at Koln HBF about 2130 hrs a year ago and there was a sleeper train, that came in and was going to Berlin, where I think it may have been split as the destinations I think were Berlin adn Prague.

Yes, the Jan Kiepura to Warsaw is the same train from Cologne as the Prague sleeper as far as Berlin, where they split. The JK portion is then attached to the first Berlin-Warsaw day train of the day. I presume a similar arrangement applies to the Prague portion.

Thankfully, I managed to experience the westbound Jan Kiepura a few weeks back. Was a lovely experience, but can see why the train is perhaps struggling to pay - only 3 through cars (1 x sleeper, 1 x couchette, 1 x seated), perhaps 40-50% loaded at best.
 

30907

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It probably shows how uneconomic these services are now that CD and PKP aren't willing to run them on their own ticket as Open Access services...

PKP got out of operating the sleeper independently a couple of years ago by hanging it onto a regular EC East of Berlin and the two CD services from Prague only made sense in combination with other portions. IIRC CD will run an evening Prague-Leipzig and morning back to fill in the gap for daytime travellers - presumably using one of the EC sets in marginal time. There's also speculation about a Prague-Zürich sleeper via Linz, attaching to EN466/7 which ÖBB is happy to keep running.

Slightly OT: I used the Wien-Duesseldorf a few nights ago - the operation is very economical, with no reversals en route, and the shunt at Duesseldorf handled by the train loco. I saw the outward working a few nights earlier, which had an extra sleeper attached, and a large number of bikes using the motorail facility - strapping them all down caused an hour''s delay!
 

Bletchleyite

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Thankfully, I managed to experience the westbound Jan Kiepura a few weeks back. Was a lovely experience, but can see why the train is perhaps struggling to pay - only 3 through cars (1 x sleeper, 1 x couchette, 1 x seated), perhaps 40-50% loaded at best.

That's quite sad - I remember as recently as the late 1990s these trains on the trunk sections being huge, long loco-hauled rakes of 12 or more coaches. A once proud tradition.

I guess the difference from the UK ones, other than the subsidy, is that air doesn't compete well with most of the UK ones - there is near no competition (other than day trains or driving) with the Penzance one and the Fort William one is the only way to do a weekend in the mountains of the area from London full stop (the timings don't work by any other mode of transport unless you are happy to risk driving through the night). There are plenty of established flights from London to Glasgow/Edinburgh/Aberdeen/Inverness, but none of them (that I know of) allow a 9am arrival in the office even with an early start.

They are also greatly attractive to tourists, which the European ones are far less so, except InterRailers in the seats (which might explain why DB are not pulling out completely from overnight trains, but instead will be operating seated-only ICs and ICEs overnight on selected routes). And Germany is presently having a love affair with the coach, with regard to which, while coach travel is well-established and successful in the UK, most people would consider it a fate worse than death for a London to Scotland slog.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
PKP got out of operating the sleeper independently a couple of years ago by hanging it onto a regular EC East of Berlin and the two CD services from Prague only made sense in combination with other portions. IIRC CD will run an evening Prague-Leipzig and morning back to fill in the gap for daytime travellers - presumably using one of the EC sets in marginal time. There's also speculation about a Prague-Zürich sleeper via Linz, attaching to EN466/7 which ÖBB is happy to keep running.

To be fair the ECs east of Berlin are operated by PKP locomotives and stock (possibly DB staff though[1]), though costs may be shared with DB. The joint "Berlin Warszawa Express" branding seems to be dying off.

I do find OeBB's continuing interest odd. Is it a cultural thing - do Austrians feel more inclined to use night trains than Germans? It's a very small country that otherwise wouldn't seem to have any need for them.

[1] I've used the service once during the DB strike, so it only operated within Poland with a poorly-advertised[2] replacement bus on the German section.

[2] Not in the planner, not at Berlin Hbf, not mentioned anywhere else. You had to know about it. Which is why I didn't, and instead started at 4am for a string of local trains, only to find when I reached the train at the Polish border that it then waited an hour for the bus to arrive, again with no information whatsoever until about 10 minutes before it went. Was an interesting trip and I enjoyed it, but it was also a fine example of how not to do passenger information.
 
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30907

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To be fair the ECs east of Berlin are operated by PKP locomotives and stock (possibly DB staff though), though costs may be shared with DB. The joint "Berlin Warszawa Express" branding seems to be dying off.

The catering is Polish (WARS), not sure about the rest, but only a small fraction of the total distance is in Germany so I wouldn't expect massive DB staff input.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
I do find OeBB's continuing interest odd. Is it a cultural thing - do Austrians feel more inclined to use night trains than Germans? It's a very small country that otherwise wouldn't seem to have any need for them.

Not sure of the answer to that, but

1. the surviving internal EN (Wien-Bregenz with motorail to Feldkirch) covers the length of the country.
2. Austrian railways (and the country generally) are fairly Vienna-centred, in contrast to Germany, which makes things simpler, including the provision of motorail (Wien Hbf has a brand new purpose-built terminal that dispatches 3 trains a night all year).
3. ÖBB operates rebuilt rather than new-build sleepers, and looks to have it in mind to buy up the CNL sleepers, which are fairly new. Not sure about the couchettes, though some new build are promised (IIRC the CNL couchettes are life expired).
 

NicholasNCE

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The catering is Polish (WARS), not sure about the rest, but only a small fraction of the total distance is in Germany so I wouldn't expect massive DB staff input.

I took the Warszawa Express back in 2014 and the Berlin-Gdynia service earlier this year. Both times the train crew changed in Frankfurt am Oder (German border station), so your tickets get checked twice: once by DB staff in Germany and (at least) once by PKP-IC staff in Poland.

I didn't get off to check this year but in 2014 west-bound the driver changeover was in Rzepin, the Polish border station.
 
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Tom C

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Or the thrice weekly Paris-Moscow train! It now calls at Warsaw around midday: https://reiseauskunft.bahn.de/bin/tr...errer=tp&rt=1&

That looks like a very interesting service, however I confess to be a FIP user so a single berth on the Jan Kiepura was about £90 I think with a DB and PKP coupon. I just had a quick look at the same on the Russian service from Paris (which I believe is barred to coupons) and a single berth was 20393 rubles which is £218!

Ouch!

Edit: That fare is for a place in a 2 berth compartment! For the whole compartment, the fare is double!
 
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Redonian

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Presumable other Polish sleepers will survive? Also, are Romanian sleepers still running?

Romanian sleepers certainly are.
I travelled Timisoara to Iasi last autumn and found myself the only passenger in the entire sleeping car. Coming back I travelled as far as Simeria and there were just 3 occupants. Despite the doubtful economics this and another sleeper still run Timisoara to Iasi and I know that there is a Iasi - Bucharest sleeper.
 

30907

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I assume the Praha service cannot survive on its own, even if CD takes it over? So I guess its good bye Kopernikus as well! :(

Sadly correct, see my posts #5 and #11. Shame, because I'd heard the sleepers were rather nice cars...
 

dutchflyer

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Rode on this train-or rather the IC section sandwiched in between the Warsaw and Prague sections, going only as far as DD=Dresden last night and now sit in a Prague place. The name JanKiepura is in fact not even used anymore. Picked up some German newspapers on the way and about all had some memories and lamentations about that demise of all Overnight trains with sleeper etc. But most of it are the German obsession of less CO2 exhaust by train as per plane. The Czech sitting cards were from OeBB=Austrian.
Re revenue: problem with nearly all overnight trains in EUR is, that well over half of seats are taken by pass-users, who of course hardly pay-for that particular trip. Meanwhile those ever expanding Fernbusse=coaches for long distance are taking over that role. Now even OeBb has abnnounced it will also step into that market: as helloe.com.
 

JonathanP

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I do find OeBB's continuing interest odd. Is it a cultural thing - do Austrians feel more inclined to use night trains than Germans? It's a very small country that otherwise wouldn't seem to have any need for them.

ÖBB say that night trains make up 17% of revenue, whereas for DB it is 1%.

My opinion is that DB decided several years ago, possibly at the point CityNightLine became part of DB Fernvekehr instead of being a separate company with the group, that complicated, difficult to run sleeper trains were too much of hassle to be bothering with when they had lots of shiny ICE trains to play with, and they were just going to run the service into the ground and then scrap it. Since then they have cut destinations, removed all the catering, made no attempt whatsoever to market the service or respond to customer demand and operated it with filthy, clapped out rolling stock. It's no surprise it loses money - they aren't even trying.

I am hopeful for the ÖBB relaunch. The evidence is good that night trains can do well if they are properly run instead of being treated as embarassaing encumbrance to be killed as soon as possible. Swedish Rail wanted to withdraw the Malmo -> Stockholm sleeper train a few years ago. The government said "Only if you actually try to run as a business for a year and show that it still loses money". They revamped the product, business shot up 65% and it's future is assured.
 

30907

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DB...operated it with filthy, clapped out rolling stock. It's no surprise it loses money - they aren't even trying.

I agree with much of your post, but having used CNL a handful of times in 5 years, most recently a couple of weeks ago, I wouldn't use that description of the sleepers (I can't comment on the couchettes) - externally shabby, maybe, but internally fine and fully functional. My only complaint - the fizz wasn't chilled on the last trip (and red wine wasn't offered as an alternative, as it used to be).
 

Bletchleyite

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My opinion is that DB decided several years ago, possibly at the point CityNightLine became part of DB Fernvekehr instead of being a separate company with the group, that complicated, difficult to run sleeper trains were too much of hassle to be bothering with when they had lots of shiny ICE trains to play with, and they were just going to run the service into the ground and then scrap it. Since then they have cut destinations, removed all the catering, made no attempt whatsoever to market the service or respond to customer demand and operated it with filthy, clapped out rolling stock. It's no surprise it loses money - they aren't even trying.

That is true - the Scottish services are famed for their on-board service and quality even if the rolling stock is rather old, same with the GWR operation. CityNightLine was originally a high quality multinational operation, but once it became part of the rather inferior DB NachtZug operation it ended up going downhill.

It's a hotel on wheels - so needs some decent level of service. Not just to be a third-rate noisy Travelodge.
 

DaiGog

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It may have been said elsewhere on the forum, but OBB is planning to operate the following night trains in Germany from this December:

Hamburg - Frankkfurt - Nürnberg - Wien
Düsseldorf - Frankfurt - Nürnberg - Wien

Hamburg - Frankfurt - Nürnberg - Munich - Innsbruck
Düsseldorf - Frankfurt - Nürnberg - Munich - Innsbruck

The Zürich service (portion) is staying in some form or other as well but I can't remember what, if anything, is changing.

The portions to/from Düsseldorf may extend to/from Amsterdam in due course.

The night service from Munich to Milan / Rome (possibly either/or, possibly both, again I can't remember - probably due to my age) is changing to operate via Salzburg and Villach (so presumably thence via Slovenia and Trieste), hence the Hamburg / Düsseldorf train terminating at Innsbruck to compensate for the loss of the Italian train as it ceases to operate over the Brenner.

So the Prague and Warsaw overnights from Germany both go.
 

gordonthemoron

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I did notice that DB started to operate more overnight ICEs (and ICs) as they started to wind down the CNL services, from about 2010
 

LNW-GW Joint

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The night service from Munich to Milan / Rome (possibly either/or, possibly both, again I can't remember - probably due to my age) is changing to operate via Salzburg and Villach (so presumably thence via Slovenia and Trieste), hence the Hamburg / Düsseldorf train terminating at Innsbruck to compensate for the loss of the Italian train as it ceases to operate over the Brenner.

Presumably running via Venice rather than Trieste?
ÖBB already runs sleepers from Vienna to Venice/Rome via Villach.
There are no trains Slovenia-Italy at the moment (bar the odd Ljubljana-Villa Opicina EMU).
 
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