Ultra Low-budget Train Cars Planned by Russian Railways

Russian Railways plans to introduce new budget train cars for customers willing to endure a lack of air conditioning and toilets, Vedomosti reports.

Federal Passenger Co., the subsidiary which runs long-distance passenger services for the state-owned Russian Railways, said in an annual report that it plans to upgrade a third of its 19,300 carriages by 2025.

As part of the overhaul, the company earlier said it will discontinue more than 5,000 carriages with an average age of 20 years by 2021.

“Before their complete disposal, old cars without air conditioners and bio-toilets are scheduled to be allocated into a separate temporary ‘economy-budget’ brand,” the subsidiary said in the report.

The Russian Railways development program for 2025 disclosed plans last month to start phasing out platzkart train cars — legendary Soviet-era third-class carriages with stacked beds — as early as 2019.

Instead, the carriages will be fitted with shower cabins, vending machines and USB slots, the business newspaper cited Russia’s biggest rail car maker as saying.