Travel: Everything You Need To Know About The Nairobi Commuter Train Schedule 2020

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Towards the end of 2020, the government unveiled a new look of the modernised Nairobi central railway station, introducing an integrated commuter rail system aimed at decongesting vehicular traffic. The Nairobi Commuter Rail Service which also entails a ride to the JKIA is set to ease the movement of people within the Nairobi Metropolitan Area while providing an efficient and cost-friendly mass rapid transit transport. 

Currently, the 10 stations in Nairobi have commuter rails service and will be served by modern trains also known as DMUs (Diesel Multiple Units). New stations include; Umoja, Donholm, Buruburu, Githurai and Pipeline.

Kenya Railways has also introduced a night train. Here are the details – The Kenya Railways Night SGR Train From Nairobi To Mombasa & Here Is What You Need To Know

The DMUs commuter trains and link trains will transverse through these five estates operating on a fixed schedule across Nairobi.

Embakasi

The timelines are as follows for the 6 trains departing from Nairobi central station to Embakasi village terminus.

DMU commuter train Nairobi

Arrival

Makadara

(Arrival

Departure)

Donholm

(Arrival

Departure)

Pipeline 

(Arrival

Departure)

Embakasi Village Terminus

Arrival

Train 1  07:20 hrs 07:30 hrs 

07:32 hrs

07:36 hrs

07:38 hrs

07:42 hrs

07:44 hrs

07:52 hrs
Train 2 09:30 hrs 09:42 hrs

09:45 hrs

09:49 hrs

09:51 hrs

09:55 hrs

09:57 hrs

10:05 hrs
Train 3 11:20 hrs 11:30 hrs

11:32 hrs

11:38 hrs

11:40 hrs

11:44 hrs

11:46 hrs

11:54 hrs
Train 4 13:30 hrs 13:42 hrs

13:44 hrs

13:48 hrs

13:50 hrs

13:54 hrs

13:56 hrs

14:04 hrs
Train 5 18:00 hrs 18:12 hrs

18:14 hrs

18:22 hrs

18:24 hrs

18:32 hrs

18:34 hrs

18:45 hrs
Train 6 18:30 hrs 18:42 hrs

18:44 hrs

18:48 hrs

18:50 hrs

18:54 hrs

18:56 hrs

19:04 hrs

The Nairobi Commuter Rail Service to JKIA journey combines rail and road services for users going to and coming from the airport. Thus, it entails a ride on the DMU train up to Embakasi Village station, then a BRT (bus rapid transport) bus ride to the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. This will cost you Ksh. 500.

  • Embakasi Village to Nairobi Central Station.

On the other hand, there are 7 trains departing Embakasi Village each day to Nairobi Central Station. Below are the timelines.

Embakasi village

Arrival

Pipeline

(Arrival

Departure)

Donholm

(Arrival

Departure)

Makadara

(Arrival

Departure)

Nairobi

Arrival

DMU  

06:29 hrs

06:33 hrs

06:35 hrs

06:39 hrs

06:41 hrs

06:53 hrs
Commuter train 07:00 hrs 07:08 hrs

07:10 hrs

07:18 hrs

07:20 hrs

07:28 hrs

07:30 hrs

07:42 hrs
DMU  08:00 hrs 08:08 hrs

08:10 hrs

08:14 hrs

08:16 hrs

08:20 hrs

08:22 hrs

08:34 hrs
DMU 10:15 hrs 10:23 hrs

10:25 hrs

10:29 hrs

10:31 hrs

10:35 hrs

10:37 hrs

10:49 hrs
DMU  12:10 hrs 12:18 hrs

12:20 hrs

12:24 hrs

12:26 hrs

12:30 hrs

12:32 hrs

12:44 hrs
DMU  14:20 14:28 hrs

14:30 hrs

14:34 hrs

14:36 hrs

14:40 hrs

14:42 hrs

14:54 hrs
DMU 19:15 hrs 19:23 hrs

19:25 hrs

19:29 hrs

19:31 hrs

19:35 hrs

19:37 hrs

19:49 hrs

Syokimau

  • Nairobi Central Station to Syokimau

6 modern trains leave the Nairobi Central Station for Syokimau through the day. The timelines are as follows.

DMU commuter train Nairobi

Arrival

Makadara

(Arrival

Departure)

Imara Daima

(Arrival

Departure)

Terminus

(Arrival

Departure)

Syokimau

Arrival

DMU or Link 1 06:35 hrs 06:47 hrs 

06:49 hrs

06:57 hrs

06:59 hrs

07:03 hrs

07:05 hrs

07:10 hrs
DMU  08:00 hrs 08:12 hrs

08:14 hrs

08:22 hrs

08:24 hrs

08:32 hrs

08:34 hrs

08:39 hrs
DMU  09:35 hrs 09:47 hrs

09:49 hrs

09:57 hrs

10:01 hrs

10:05 hrs

10:07 hrs

10:12 hrs
DMU or Link 2 12:00 hrs 12:12 hrs

12:14 hrs

12:22 hrs

12:24 hrs

12:28 hrs

12:30 hrs

12:35 hrs
Commuter train 17:30 hrs 17:42 hrs

17:44 hrs

17:56 hrs

17:58 hrs

18:06 hrs

18:08 hrs

18:13 hrs
DMU 18:20 hrs 18:32 hrs

18:34 hrs

18:42 hrs

18:44 hrs

18:48 hrs

18:50 hrs

18:55 hrs

Link trains operate between Nairobi central station and Nairobi terminus. 

  • Syokimau Station to Nairobi Central Station

The schedule for the modern train/DMUs leaving Syokimau station to Nairobi central station is as follows.

Syokimau

Arrival

Terminus

(Arrival

Departure)

Imara Daima

(Arrival

Departure)

Makadara

(Arrival

Departure)

Nairobi

Arrival

Commuter train 06:20 hrs 06:25 hrs 

06:27 hrs

06:35 hrs

06:37 hrs

06:49 hrs

06:51 hrs

06:53 hrs
DMU  07:15 hrs 07:20 hrs

07:22 hrs

07:26 hrs

07:28 hrs

07:36 hrs

07:38 hrs

07:50 hrs
DMU  08:50 hrs 08:55 hrs

08:57 hrs

09:01 hrs

09:03 hrs

09:11 hrs

09:13 hrs

09:25 hrs
DMU 10:40 hrs 10:45 hrs

10:47 hrs

10:51 hrs

10:53 hrs

11:01 hrs

11:03 hrs

11:15 hrs
DMU or Link 1 14:30 hrs 14:35 hrs

14:37 hrs

14:45 hrs

14:47 hrs

14:59 hrs

15:01 hrs

15:13 hrs
DMU or Link 2 20:20 hrs 20:32 hrs

20:34 hrs

20:46 hrs

20:48 hrs

21:00 hrs

Kahawa West

  • Kahawa west to Nairobi Central station
Kahawa west

(Departure)

Githurai

(Arrival

Departure)

Mwiki

(Arrival

Departure)

Dandora

(Arrival

Departure)

Makadara

(Arrival

Departure)

Nairobi

(Arrival)

Commuter train 09:00 hrs 09:08 hrs

09:10 hrs

09:18 hrs

09:20 hrs

09:34 hrs

09:36 hrs

09:57 hrs

09:59 hrs

10:15 hrs
  • Nairobi central station to Kahawa west station

The commuter train rain arrives in the Nairobi Terminus at 8:00 am Below is the schedule.

 

Nairobi

Arrival

Makadara

Arrival

Dandora

Arrival

Mwiki

Arrival

Githurai

Arrival

Kahawa west

Arrival

Commuter train 08:00 hrs 08:12 hrs 08:28 hrs 08:42 hrs 08:49 hrs 08:55 hrs

Athi River

  • The new Athi river train schedule

As of November, residents could take the train from Athi River to the CBD and back. However, later in the month, the Athi River train schedule was revised and the new timelines are as follows.

Athi-river train schedule. Image from https://bit.ly/2IN8MSw

Kikuyu

  • Nairobi central station to Kikuyu station
Nairobi

Departure

Kibera

Arrival

Departure

Dagoretti

Arrival

Departure

Kikuyu

Arrival

Commuter train 17:35 hrs 18:00 hrs

18:02 hrs

18:37 hrs

18:39 hrs

19:10 hrs
  • Kikuyu station to Nairobi 

The Commuter train departs from Kikuyu as detailed below:

Kikuyu

Departure

Dagoretti

Arrival

Departure

Kibera

Arrival

Departure

Nairobi

Arrival

Commuter train 06:00 hrs 06:35 hrs

06:37 hrs

07:02 hrs

07:04 hrs

07:30 hrs

Ruiru

  • Nairobi central station to Ruiru

The train travelling from Nairobi central station to Ruiru departs Nairobi at 17:40 hrs and arrives at Ruiru – the fina stop – at 19:10 hrs. Below is the schedule.

https://bit.ly/2LoJJGa
  • Ruiru to Nairobi central station

The train from Ruiru takes one 1hour 35 minutes to arrive at Nairobi CBD. It leaves at 6:00 a.m and arrives at 7:35 a.m. Check below for other timelines.

Image from https://bit.ly/2LoJJGa

A few pointers to note;

  • A ride on the modern train also known as the DMU is priced at Ksh100 to every destination
  • Link trains operate between Nairobi central station and Nairobi terminus.
  • Every passenger must adhere to the COVID-19 rules otherwise they will not be allowed in the train. 
  • Kikuyu, Athi-river, Kahawa west and Ruiru have one commuter train travelling to/from the CBD to the distinct destinations.
  • The commuter trains have cyclist provisions on board allowing road users to continue the rest of their journey with their preferred mode of transport.

The commuter rails passengers will also have access to the SGR railway line, the Nairobi terminus and the Ongata Rongai railway station.

The SGR

SGR updated its train schedule, making some changes on the Madaraka Express, the train from Nairobi to Mombasa. SGR schedule is as indicated below. Travel: How To Book The SGR Madaraka Express Train

An image of the SGR schedule

The Kenya Railways Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) night schedule can be found here. Here is the regular train schedule.
Train Destination Departure (New) Arrival (New)
Morning SGR Express Train Nairobi – Mombasa

Mombasa – Nairobi

08:00 hrs

08:00 hrs

13:15 hrs

13:05 hrs

Afternoon SGR Express Train Nairobi – Mombasa

Mombasa – Nairobi

14:15 hrs

14:15 hrs

19:30 hrs

19:20 hrs

Inter-county train schedule Nairobi – Mombasa

Mombasa – Nairobi

08:00 hrs

08:00 hrs

14:00hrs

14:10 hrs

You can book the tickets 60 days in advance, although when it comes to group bookings, for more than 20 passengers, you need to book officially 30 days in advance.  Options to book the SGR remain either via USSD or online. Prices remain unaltered. Here is where to book.

Alongside the commuter railway system, President Uhuru Kenyatta commissioned the Kenya Railways Transit Shed. The transit shed will facilitate seamless transportation, reduce the cost for small scale traders and provide a facility where traders can self-clear their cargo within a day if coming from Mombasa.

We have stepped into the festivities and even though the travelling experience might be different due to the COVID-19 crisis, it is inevitable. Therefore, to travel safely ensuring that you and your loved ones are protected, be sure to follow the COVID-19 regulations.

Check out 5 Exciting Things To Do During A RoadTrip

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