Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder announced today that NSW rail operator Countrylink’s twice daily XPT trains between Melbourne and Sydney had begun stopping on request at Broadmeadows and Seymour.
Mr Mulder said Member for Seymour Cindy McLeish had been a vocal advocate for this welcome timetable change that would give residents of the Seymour electorate and Melbourne’s northern suburbs easier access to the XPT trains that also stop at Benalla, Wangaratta, Albury and many stations in NSW including Wagga Wagga, Goulburn and Campbelltown.
“The Victorian Coalition Government would like to thank NSW colleague, Minister for Transport The Hon Gladys Berejiklian, Mr Mark Atkinson of Countrylink and Public Transport Victoria for arranging the changed timetables,” Mr Mulder said.
Ms McLeish said Countrylink’s XPT offered trips at convenient times with a $69 bargain one way economy class fare available between Southern Cross, Broadmeadows, Seymour, Benalla or Wangaratta and Sydney in each direction from 3 to 20 December 2012 and from 3 January until 28 February 2013.
“Northbound, the daily 8.30am Southern Cross to Sydney daylight XPT will stop on request at Broadmeadows at 8.54am and Seymour at 9.44am, arriving in Sydney at 7.54pm. The overnight XPT departing Southern Cross at 7.55pm will stop on request at Broadmeadows at 8.19pm and Seymour at 9.03pm, arriving in Sydney at 6.55am the next morning. There is a buffet car offering hot meals, snacks and drinks while one first class sleeping car and first class seats are also available,” Ms McLeish said.
“From Sydney, the overnight XPT departing at 8.40pm will make a request stop at Seymour at 6.20am the next morning and Broadmeadows at 7am, while the daylight XPT departing Sydney at 7.42am will stop on request at Seymour at 5.25pm and Broadmeadows at 6.05pm.
“Local travel between Southern Cross, Broadmeadows and Seymour is not permitted. XPTs going to Sydney only pick up on request at Broadmeadows and Seymour, while trains from Sydney only set down on request at these two stations.”
Mr Mulder said XPT seat bookings were compulsory.
“Passengers travelling at short notice must make an online booking at least two hours before the XPT departs either Southern Cross or Sydney, or book at a station with access to Countrylink’s reservation system at least an hour before the train is scheduled to stop at Broadmeadows or Seymour,” Mr Mulder said.
Bookings can be made through www.countrylink.info or call 13 22 32.