The Anonymous Widower

Will COVID-19 Create A Boom In Sleeper Train Services?

I have regularly used the Caledonian Sleeper to go to Scotland, as it gets you there at an early hour in the morning and if you book the train, at the right time, the cost of a single First Class cabin can be about the same cost as a day First Class ticket and a night in a Premier Inn.

Look at this picture, that taken a few months ago, as I was leaving Euston on a Caledonian Sleeper to Edinburgh. It would be very easy to board the train without breaking the two-metre rule.

I believe sleeper trains will see an increase in passengers.

We may also see in increase in services. These posts detail various planned or possible services.

Note that the Caledonian Sleeper, the Swedes and the Austrians are investing in new rolling stock, so that won’t be a problem.

But perhaps the most interesting story, is described in Nightjet Plans Mini-Capsules For Private Travellers.

I can see a series of sleeper trains criss-crossing Europe, where everybody has their own mini-capsule. Perhaps, it will be called Ryantrain or easyTrain.


April 19, 2020 - Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , ,


  1. By good fortune we have a fleet of recently withdrawn HST trains and perhaps these could be adapted for further use including sleeper services ?

    They would be examined and those carriages in worst condition would be scrapped but those suitable for another year of use could be convert both to sleeper type trains with retention toilets and could be used on long distance services crisscrossing the country.

    While some would have seats removed to comply with distance rules and could replace shorter existing trains on day services given distance rules will reduce capacity and it’s likely standing won’t be allowed.

    Question is any anyone thinking about doing this !

    Comment by Melvyn | April 19, 2020 | Reply

    • Why is it, everybody wants to refurbish and reuse HSTs? The short Scottish and Great Western experiments have been an expensive failure. I’ve travelled in both and they are a big disappointment compared to the Stadler Class 755 trains, which could do the same jobs and be converted to hydrogen or battery power in the future.

      HSTs will have to be scrapped in the next few years to meet our climate change obligations. So why not go zero-carbon now?

      For the sleeper application, I’d convert TransPennine Express’s Mark 5A coaches, which are very similar to the new Caledonian Sleeper coaches. They could be hauled by Class 88 locomotives or electric versions of these locomotives.

      TransPennine Express would replace the locomotive hauled stock with more Hitachi bi-modes, which can now be converted to battery-electric.

      Comment by AnonW | April 19, 2020 | Reply

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