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US netizens amazed by China's high-speed trains

Xinhua | Updated: 2018-03-19 23:17

WASHINGTON - Over the past decade, high-speed railways have developed rapidly in China, the speed, convenience and comfortability of which have become quite appealing to passengers from all over the world, including many from the United States.

So, what do Americans think of Chinese bullet trains? Here are some answers from Quora, a popular user-generated Q&A site in the country.

"I had traveled on an Amtrack train before in the US, and hated how slow it was and how many stops there were. Chinese high-speed trains are on a different level," said Tillman Huett-Lassman, who traveled between Beijing City and Zhengzhou City in north China about a year ago.

"When I say they are high-speed, I mean they are high-speed," he said.

The maximum speed of China's bullet trains rose to 350 kph, when the Fuxing (Rejuvenation) Grade bullet trains started operation between Beijing and Shanghai in east China on Sept 21, 2017.

"The trains are clean and the seats are huge. There are ample power outlets and you can't even feel how fast the train is moving. If there were no windows, I wouldn't be able to tell when we were stopped or when we were travelling at 300 km/h - it is that smooth."

Huett-Lassman made the comment under the question of "How advanced is high-speed rail in China", and his answer received 7,500 "upvotes", showing that he was echoed by many.

Sthitapragnya Deshpande, who worked in China, further elaborated on the convenience and comfort of riding Chinese bullet trains under the same question.

"Booking these trains is smooth -- online on an English language website. Once I reached the station (which has been designed to accommodate at least double the current number of people), I scanned my passport onto an automatic machine and it gave me the paper tickets, which I fed into the entry gates."

"Railway stations in China -- especially the newer ones like Shenzhen Bei Railway Station -- are always extremely comfortable to sit in, just like airports," he added.

Replying to a similar question on Quora titled "How does it feel to take the high-speed train in China", Adam Richards, who has lived in China since 2011, said, "When you realize that your North American infrastructure is light years behind China's, you feel ashamed."

Richards has a point. China currently has the world's longest high-speed rail network, about a third of which has been designed to run at a speed of 350 kilometers per hour.

China is developing new bullet trains with a speed up to 400 kph, and is also researching the next generation magnetic-levitation train with a top speed of 600 kph, said Ding Rongjun, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, adding that automatic and unmanned drive technology will be used in the future.

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