Monday, November 28, 2011

New PNR Bicol Express Train Escapade

feeling the new transpo trip for the 1st time
September 09-11, 2011

The Philippine National Railways (Pambansang Daangbakal ng Pilipinas), commonly abbreviated as PNR, is a state-owned railway operating an extensive railway line on the island of Luzon. As of 2010, it operates two commuter rail services in Metro Manila and the Bicol Region. The commuter line in Metro Manila is part of the Strong Republic Transit System and is referred to as the Orange Line.

After resuming its operation last june 09, 2011 and suspended last july due to continuous heavy rains, finally it was officially announced last september 05, 2011 that the PNR bicol express trip (from tutuban station to naga station) will  start its operation again. in fact, it will be better than ever, differences tallied as follows;

PNR tutuban station

before (early 2011);
- operation is every other day only. this means if the train leaves tutuban on this day, it will be back on the next next day (day after tomorrow).
- train departs 1800H for both tutuban and naga station
- train arrives 0600H for both tutuban and naga station
- travel time of 12 hours
- lots of stop-overs
- sleeper couch costs greater than php950
- reclining seat costs greater than php700

now (September 2011);
- operation is everyday. this means if the train leaves tutuban on this day, there will be another trip for the next day.
- train departs 1830H for both tutuban and naga station
- train arrives 0500H for both tutuban and naga station
- travel time of 10.5 hours
- less stop-overs
- sleeper couch costs php950
- reclining seat costs php548

PNR bicol express route fare

PNR commuter train schedule

PNR bicol express train new schedule (sept. 2011)

There are 3 coasters that composed the entire train, 2 for sleeper and 1 for the reclining. of course, there is still 20% discount for seniors, php760 for sleeper and php438 for recline. both are fully aircon and have dedicated rest rooms. if you cant make it to tutuban station at 1830H, you can request for pick-up to any of this stations;
- espana station
- pasay road station
- alabang station

Bicol express main stations consist of the following; Tutuban, EspaƱa, Pasay Road, Alabang, Lucena, Plaridel, Hondagua, Ragay, Sipocot, Libmanan, Naga.


- felt safe and secure, there was on-duty officer (with a gun)
- food and drinks are allowed to bring inside, stop-over to have snacks is not practice.
- train is good but sometimes the motion of the train itself is too shaky as in there were instances that it felt like coaster is separated on its railway.
- rest room is okay, no tissues available. sensor faucet operational on sink.
- don't reserve seats in 1A-1D as you will be disturbed and annoyed by this divider door separating the coaster and the rest room
- jacket is a must, temperature becomes insanely intolerable come early morning.

PNR bicol express train recline seats

PNR bicol express train rest room on recline seats

PNR bicol express route sleeper couch

for reservations and other queries, you can call PNR ticketing office (02)319-0041 local 104 and (02)319-0044

Anyways, since the aim is to experience this new train journey, we have planned a side trip afterwards. I divided this wonderful trip into different set of posts to be more specific on its content;


  1. wow! i wanna try this soon! thanks for sharing your insights on this... :)

  2. cool~! kaya kayang matulog sa sleeper couch? you mentioned some shaky train motion, how frequent was this? were you able to sleep on the reclining seats? thanks!

  3. @madmader around 2000H to 0400H, at least 3x an hour, as in gigising ka talaga, hahaha !! yup, nakatulog naman ako ... ang laking tulong ng jacket, must bring ... ^_^

  4. Salamat sa blog. plan for a trip next month. I think this sound a different train tripping experience i have from bangkok to KL.

  5. I wanna get on this train just for the heck of it!!!

  6. what is its capacity? would it be okay to just obtain the ticket on the spot? :)

  7. @Kiall Suazo

    estimated to have 20 rows with 4 columns sa recline seats (80 pax), at mga less than nun sa sleeper couch.. yup, its ok on the spot provided its not peak season ..

  8. Would love to ride this soon once we are bound to Quezon Province. Matagal lang ang travel nito.:-). Thanks andie for this post.:-).

  9. pero sabi ng friend ko, amoy luma daw. scared sila humiga kahit pagod na pagod na sila. hehe


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