Travelers will be able to reach Thessaloniki from Athens in under four hours on board the Silver Arrow, the new high-speed electrified passenger train which started services on Sunday, train operator TrainOSE announced.
“True to its commitments for upgraded, safe and quality services for the passenger public, today TrainOSE inaugurates a new era of travel with ETR trains on the Athens-Thessaloniki-Athens route,” the company said on its twitter account.
ETR 470 travels at a speed of up to 250km/hr and can reach Thessaloniki in 3 hours and 55 minutes.
TrainOSE CEO Maurizio Capotorto said the launch of the ETR 470 – one of five on order – was an important step for the future of Greece’s railways. The first train departed Athens on Sunday at 60 percent capacity.
The nine-car ETR trains are accessible to people with disability, include first class cabins, restaurant and bar, lockers, wi-fi, and allow small pets on board.
Ticket price & routes
According to TrainOSE, one-way train fares range from 65 euros in first class from Athens to Thessaloniki to 55 euros for B’ class.
For a limited time only through to June 3, there will be a 20 percent discount on these fares: 52 euros for a one-way ticket from Athens to Thessaloniki and 44 euros for B’ class.
The morning train from Athens departs at 7:22am with a stopover in Larissa at 9:58am and arrival at Thessaloniki Station at 11:20am. A second train departs from Athens at 5:22pm and arrives in Thessaloniki at 9:21pm.
The first train from Thessaloniki departs at 7:08am and arrives in Athens at 11:03am, and the evening train leaves at 5:08pm arriving in Athens at 9:04pm.
“This is not your average new train, it’s a new service package for passengers. It was important for us to break the four-hour barrier on the Thessaloniki-Athens-Thessaloniki route. When the network is ready, the ETR 470 is such a fast train that it will cover this route in 3 hours and 20 minutes,” said Roberto Biasin, commercial director TrainOSE.
Speaking to the press on Sunday, Biasin said overall passenger traffic on the Athens-Thessaloniki-Athens route was fast approaching pre-pandemic 2019 levels.
“Our main competitor is the car, not the plane,” he said, adding that the increase in the price of fuel in combination with the high quality services offered on board the train, “will bring the public closer to the train “.
Founded in 2005, the country’s passenger and freight train operator TrainOSE is owned by Italian state railway group Ferrovie dello Stato (FS) Italiane.