NSW TrainLink

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NSW TrainLink
NSW Trainlink Hop Logo
NSW TrainLink V16 Set.jpg
V set at Sydney Central in August 2013
Locale Regional New South Wales
Intercity services
Regional services
Transit type Intercity and regional rail
Annual ridership 34.7 million (2013/14)
Website www.nswtrainlink.info
Began operation 1 July 2013
Operator(s) Transport for New South Wales
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Electrification 1,500V (DC) overhead line

NSW TrainLink is a brand for government funded passenger rail and coach services outside of metropolitan Sydney in the Australian state of New South Wales. NSW TrainLink is a subsidiary of Transport for New South Wales.[1][2] NSW Trains, an organisation owned by the Government of New South Wales, manages NSW TrainLink operations and operates train services.[3] Coach services are provided by private operators.


In May 2012 the Minister for Transport announced a restructure of RailCorp.[4][5][6][7]

The NSW TrainLink brand was introduced on 1 July 2013 to coincide with NSW Trains taking over all of CountryLink's services and CityRail's non-suburban services.

NSW Trains also took responsibility from RailCorp for granting access to and maintaining the Main Northern line from Berowra to Newcastle, the Main Western line from Emu Plains to Bowenfels and the South Coast line from Waterfall to Bomaderry.

RailCorp's remaining function is primarily as custodian of railway real estate, infrastructure and trains.[8]

Quiet carriages[edit]

Quiet carriages are designated carriages where noise made by passengers are requested to be kept to a minimum. Passengers are asked to place mobile phones on silent, move carriages in order to have a conversation with another passenger and use headphones when listening to music.[9]

Quiet carriages are on Intercity services are located in four carriages on 8 car sets, two carriages on 4 car sets and one carriage on two car sets.[10]

Quiet carriages were first introduced on the Central Coast & Newcastle Line in early 2012 as a three month trial. On 1 September 2012 quiet carriages were permanently introduced and expanded to all intercity services operating on the Blue Mountains and South Coast lines.[9] As of 2013, Quiet Carriages operate on the entire NSW TrainLink intercity network.


The NSW TrainLink network is divided into two tiers. Intercity lines form part of the Greater Sydney public transport network. Ticketing uses the MyZone and Opal systems and seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Regional lines use a separate, reserved seat ticketing system. In 2013-14, 32.9 million passenger journeys were made on intercity services and 1.8 million journeys on regional services.[11]

Intercity lines[edit]

NSW TrainLink Intercity network

The intercity lines stretch over 200 kilometres from Sydney, as far north as Dungog, as far north-west as Scone, as far west as Bathurst, as far south-west as Goulburn and as far south as Bomaderry.

Electric lines extend from Sydney north to Hamilton (Newcastle), west to Lithgow and south to Port Kembla and Kiama. Most electric trains terminate at Central, the hub of the NSW TrainLink, but local services also run in the Newcastle and Wollongong areas.

Diesel trains serve the more remote or less populated sections of the intercity network. Hunter line services operate from the terminus station at Newcastle to Telarah with some extending to Dungog and Scone. Southern Highlands trains connect Moss Vale to the southern Sydney suburb of Campbelltown, where a change to a connecting Sydney Trains service is generally required to reach the centre of Sydney - though one off-peak service operates directly to Central. A few services continue south from Moss Vale to Goulburn. Diesel services also operate on the South Coast Line between Bomaderry and Kiama, where connecting electric services operate to Sydney.

Train services[edit]

Line colour and name Between Electric services
CityRailinteryellow.png Blue Mountains Central a and Lithgow, with limited services to Bathurst To Lithgow
CityRailinterred.png Central Coast & Newcastle Central and Hamilton (Newcastle) Yes
CityRailinterblue.png South Coast Central b and Bomaderry or Port Kembla To Kiama and Port Kembla
CityRailintergreen.png Southern Highlands Campbelltown c and Moss Vale, with limited services to Goulburn No
CityRailhunter.png Hunter Hamilton (Newcastle) and Telarah, with limited services to Dungog or Scone No
^a Some peak services on the Blue Mountains Line run to/from Hornsby
^b Some peak services and most weekend services on the South Coast Line run to/from Bondi Junction
^c Some peak services on the Southern Highlands Line run to/from Central. At other times, a change of train is required at Campbelltown or Macarthur

Bus and coach services[edit]

NSW TrainLink operates several bus routes along corridors where the railway line has been closed to passengers or as a supplement to rail services. These bus services are operated by private sector bus companies contracted by NSW TrainLink.

Line colour and name Between
CityRailbusblue.png South Coast line Wollongong to Moss Vale/Bundanoon via Robertson (r)
CityRailbusgreen.png Southern Highlands line Moss Vale to Goulburn via Marulan
CityRailbusgreen.png Southern Highlands line Picton to Bowral via Thirlmere on weekdays only
^(r) Seat reservations required

Regional lines[edit]

NSW TrainLink Regional network (highlighted in blue)

NSW TrainLink operates passenger services throughout New South Wales and interstate to Brisbane, Canberra and Melbourne. All rail services feature diesel rolling stock.

North Coast[edit]

The North Coast region covers the North Coast, Northern Rivers and South East Queensland regions. Accordingly, the Government of Queensland makes a contribution to the provision of these services. North Coast region services appear on the network map in red. Services run along the Main North and North Coast lines from Sydney Central station to Roma Street station in Brisbane.[12]

Principal stations served by XPT trains are:

Cities and towns served by NSW TrainLink coaches connecting off North Coast services include: Tea Gardens, Forster, Port Macquarie, Yamba, Moree, Lismore, Alstonville, Lismore, Ballina, Byron Bay, Murwillumbah, Tweed Heads and Surfers Paradise.

North Western[edit]

The North Western region covers the state's Hunter, Northern Tablelands and North West regions. North Western region services appear on the network map in orange. Services run along the Main North line from Sydney Central station to Werris Creek where the service divides for Armidale and Moree.[13]

Principal stations served by Xplorer trains are:

Cities and towns served by NSW TrainLink coaches connecting off North Western services include: Wee Waa, Inverell, Grafton, Glen Innes and Tenterfield.


The Western region covers the Central Tablelands and Western regions. Western region services appear on the network map in yellow. Services run along the Main Western line from Sydney Central station to Dubbo and the Broken Hill line to Broken Hill.[14]

Principal stations served by XPT trains are:

Principal stations served by Xplorer trains are:

Cities and towns served by NSW TrainLink coaches connecting off Southern services include: Oberon, Mudgee, Baradine, Cowra, Grenfell, Forbes, Parkes, Condobolin, Lightning Ridge Brewarrina, Bourke, Warren and Broken Hill.


The Southern region covers the state's Illawarra, South Coast, Snowy Mountains, South West Slopes, Southern Tablelands, Riverina and Sunraysia regions plus the Australian Capital Territory and parts of Victoria. Accordingly the Government of Victoria (though not the ACT Government) makes a contribution to the provision of these services. Southern region services appear on the network map in green. Services run along the Main South from Sydney Central station to Albury before continuing on the North East line to Southern Cross station in Melbourne, with the line to Canberra branching off south of Goulburn and the line to Griffith at Junee.[15]

Principal stations served by XPT trains are:

Principal stations served by Xplorer trains are:

Cities and towns served by NSW TrainLink coaches connecting off Southern services include: Wollongong, Bombala, Eden, Tumbarumba, Bathurst, Dubbo, Condobolin, Griffith, Mildura and Echuca.

Coach services[edit]

The Public Transport Commission first introduced coaches in September 1975 when introduced to replace all train services out of Dubbo. Coaches replaced many branch line rail services over the next few years and by 1987 the State Rail Authority had 36 coaches operating throughout the state.[16]

CountryLink adopted the model used by V/Line in Victoria and contracted out the provision of these services to private operators, with services transferring to the successful bidders between November 1989 and June 1990.[17] CityRail also operated buses on services where the railway lines had closed.

The full list of coach operators providing services as at July 2013 were:

Operator Services
Australia Wide Coaches Lithgow to Bathurst, Orange & Parkes
Busways Wauchope to Port Macquarie
Edwards Coaches Armidale to Tenterfield
Greyhound Australia Lithgow to Gulgong, Coonabarabran & Baradine
Hunter Valley Buses Fassifern to Toronto
Loader's Coaches Lithgow to Grenfell
Makehams Coaches Wagga Wagga to Griffith
Wagga Wagga/Cootamundra to Tumbarumba
Cootamundra to Queanbeyan
Cootamundra to Mildura
Oberon Bus Company Mount Victoria to Oberon
Ogden’s Coaches Lithgow to Dubbo & Nyngan
Bathurst/Dubbo to Cootamundra
Dubbo to Lightning Ridge, Bourke & Broken Hill
Picton Coaches Picton to Bowral
Port Stephens Coaches Broadmeadow to Taree
G&J Purtill, Moama Wagga Wagga/Albury to Echuca
Roadcoach Wollongong to Moss Vale
Moss Vale to Goulburn
Sunstate Coaches Grafton to Byron Bay
Casino to Tweed Heads
Casino to Surfers Paradise
Casino to Brisbane
Symes Coaches Tamworth/Armidale to Inverell
Moree to Grafton
Transborder Express Canberra to Bombala & Eden
Western Road Liners Parkes to Condobolin
Wolters Bus & Coach Service Narrabri to Wee Waa & Burren Junction

On 1 July 2014, the Lithgow to Gulgong, Coonabarabran, Baradine services passed from Greyhound Australia to Ogden's Coaches.[18]

In July 2014, Transport NSW commenced the re-tendering process with, the routes reorganised into 18 contracts. The new contracts commenced on 1 January 2015 for a five-year period, with an option to extend for three years if performance criteria is met.[19]

Changes included Dyson Group taking over the Wagga Wagga to Griffith and Tumbarumba services,[20][21] Roadcoach the Cootamundra to Queanbeyan service.[22] and Swan Hill Buslines the Nyngan to Lithgow via Dubbo, Lightning Ridge to Dubbo, Broken Hill to Dubbo and Bourke, Brewarrina via Coolabah and Dubbo services.[18]


Main article: NSW TrainLink fleet

The NSW TrainLink fleet consists of both diesel and electric traction, with the oldest of the fleet being the V sets and the youngest being the H sets. The Tangaras, and Oscars are shared with Sydney Trains. The entire NSW Trainlink fleet is maintained by Sydney Trains either directly or via a Sydney Trains contract with a private maintenance company.

Class Image Type Top speed Carriage Numbers Routes operated Built
km/h mph
Endeavour Railcar Endeavour railcar at Newcastle railway station, NSW.JPG Diesel Multiple Unit 145 90 28 Hunter
South Coast (Bomaderry (Nowra) to Kiama)
Blue Mountains (Bathurst service)
Southern Highlands
H Set Oscar H11-scarborough.jpg Electric Multiple Unit 130 81 221 (Shared with Sydney Trains) Central Coast & Newcastle
South Coast
Blue Mountains (up to Springwood)
Hunter Railcar CityRail-Hunter-Railcar-2754.jpg Diesel Multiple Unit 145 90 14 Hunter 2006
T Set Tangara CityRail-Tangara-T33-ext.jpg Electric Multiple Unit 115 72 447 (Shared with Sydney Trains) Blue Mountains
South Coast
V Set NSW TrainLink V16.JPG Electric Multiple Unit 115 72 196 Central Coast & Newcastle
Blue Mountains
Xplorer NSW TrainLink Xplorer at Central Station.jpg Diesel Multiple Unit 145 90 23 North Western
Southern (to Canberra and Griffith)
Western (to Broken Hill)
XPT CountryLink XPT 2018 at Junee.jpg Diesel locomotive &
Passenger carriage
160 99 19 Power cars
60 passenger carriages
North Coast
Southern (to Melbourne)
Western (to Dubbo)

Future electric train[edit]

In May 2014, the NSW Government announced its intention to purchase approximately 520 new carriages for the NSW TrainLink intercity network expected to begin service in 2019. These will replace the V sets and allow the H sets to be transferred to Sydney Trains services.[23][24]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Annual Report 30 June 2012 RailCorp
  2. ^ About the Reform NSW Trains
  3. ^ "NSW Trains". Transport for NSW. Retrieved 1 January 2015. 
  4. ^ "RailCorp job cuts first of many: unions" Sydney Morning Herald 15 May 2012
  5. ^ "Ruthless RailCorp reforms planned as middle management axed" Daily Telegraph 15 May 2012
  6. ^ Corporate Plan 2012/13 RailCorp
  7. ^ 700 jobs to go as RailCorp gets the axe Daily Telegraph 16 November 2012
  8. ^ Frequently Asked Questions RailCorp June 2013
  9. ^ a b Quiet carriages now permanent on Blue Mountains and South Coast intercity services Sydney Trains
  10. ^ Quiet carriages to expand on South Coast line Illawarra Mercury 3 July 2013
  11. ^ "Transport for NSW 2013/14 Annual Report" (pdf). Transport for NSW. p. 32. 
  12. ^ North Coast timetable NSW TrainLink 6 April 2014
  13. ^ North Western timetable NSW TrainLink 20 October 2013
  14. ^ Western timetable NSW TrainLink 20 October 2013
  15. ^ Southern timetable NSW TrainLink 30 June 2014
  16. ^ "State Rail Coach Services - The Vehicles" Australian Bus Panorama issue 9/3 October 1993
  17. ^ "Coach Services of the New South Wales State Rail Authority" Australian Bus Panorama issue 9/2 September 1993
  18. ^ a b Improved NSW Trainlink Coach Services Walgett District News 6 January 2015
  19. ^ Provision of NSW Rural Coach Services NSW eTendering 11 July 2014
  20. ^ New contracts cost Wagga based coach company Daily Advertiser 30 December 2014
  21. ^ New contracts awarded to improve NSW Trainlink Coach Services Daryl Maguire MP 9 December 2014
  22. ^ Katrina: New contracts awarded to improve NSW TrainLink coach services Katrina Hodgkinson Member for Barrinjuck 10 December 2014
  23. ^ NSW Government to invest $2.8 billion in new intercity trains, making all trains air-conditioned Transport for New South Wales 8 May 2014
  24. ^ Intercity Fleet Program Transport for New South Wales