There are 6 types of trains in Poland, some divided into 1st
class. All types have sections with an open layout, and some (EIC, IC, and TLK)
also have compartment sections. Below is an infographic and a description of each type, sorted from most to least expensive.
Express Intercity Premium (EIP)
Bullet train service, also called "Pendolino", available only on select routes from Warsaw
, and Wrocław
. The price is approximately 2.5 times the price of a regular Intercity ticket for 2nd
class is 50% more expensive than 2nd
EIC trains are 50% faster than regular Intercity trains. They are also a bit more comfortable.
EIP train 2nd class
EIP train 1st class
EIP destination map
Express Intercity (EIC)
EIC trains are non-bullet trains but typically more modern than regular Intercity trains and approximately 50% faster (ridiculously, just as fast as EIP trains). They also run only on select routes, especially high-demand routes
not serviced by EIP trains, usually between major cities. They price is approximately 2.25 times more than for a regular Intercity ticket for 2nd
class is 50% more expensive than 2nd
EIC trains are 50% faster than regular Intercity trains. They are also often a bit more comfortable. In fact, the only reason to pick EIP over EIC is that EIP employs only the most modern bullet trains and you can therefore
be sure of optimum comfort. Note that the modern trains do not have compartment sections.
Newer EIC train
Older EIC train
New 1st class (open)
New 2nd class (open)
Old 1st class (open)
Old 2nd class (open)
Old 1st class (compartment)
Old 2nd class (compartment)
IC trains are mid-tier services that operate both more and less modern trains. They run to cities of all sizes, and typically terminate at a larger city, such as Wrocław
All major Polish cities are connected with each other with regular Intercity services. Intercity trains are also divided into 2 classes and have both open and compartment sections.
IC train 1st class (open)
IC train 2nd class (open)
IC train 1st class (compartment)
IC train 2nd class (compartment)
Twoje Linie Kolejowe (TLK)
TLK are lower-tier intercity services that run parallel to IC trains. Oddly enough, TLK uses mainly the same trains as IC and usually costs exactly the same. The main difference is that, with TLK, there is a (small) risk
of catching an older train, for example with 8-person compartments. There is also a risk of a lack of air-conditioning and a dining car. Finally, some TLK connections take a longer route, extending the travel time. For photos, see the IC sub-chapter above.
POLREGIO, often called Przewozy Regionalne, is a medium-haul service that runs between two close major cities, such as Poznań and Wrocław, or from a major city to a smaller one. These trains stop very often, even in tiny towns.
They are approximately 40% cheaper and 30% slower than regular Intercity trains and are not divided into classes or into compartment and open sections. Currently, old trains are being replaced by modern ones, which are quite comfortable.
The chance of catching an old train is around 30%.
Overall, however, the level of comfort is a bit worse than in IC trains and comparable to TLK trains.
new POLREGIO train
old POLREGIO train
new POLREGIO train inside
old POLREGIO train inside
Poland is divided into 16 voivodeships. Many of them have installed their own, local carrier, and those carriers do not compete with one another or run parallel services.
Local carriers serve low-demand routes between smaller cities or from small cities to major cities.
The service on all those carriers is very similar and you will never have to choose between two since whenever local carriers will be your choice, they will be your only choice.
The trains are all modern and comfortable and resemble urban rail trains. They are approximately 40% slower and cheaper than regular Intercity trains and stop in all villages on the way.
The trains are not divided into classes or compartments.
Currently, there are 6 local carriers: Koleje Dolnośląskie (Southwest), Koleje Małopolskie (South-Southeast),
Koleje Mazowieckie (Central-East), Koleje Śląskie (South), Koleje Wielkopolskie (Central-West), and Łódzka Kolej Aglomeracyjna (Central).
Smaller villages in Northern Poland are serviced by POLREGIO.
local carrier train
local carrier train inside
All trains in Poland have toilets. Some of them are amazing and some of them are horrible - there is really nothing inbetween.
On EIP, EIC, Local Carriers, new POLREGIO trains, new IC trains, and new TLK trains, they are fantastic and modern. On everything else,
and especially older POLREGIO trains, they are a nightmare.
new train toilet
old train toilet
In Poland, dining cars are called WARS. Trains with a WARS have hot foot available onboard. Almost all EIP, EIC and IC trains have a WARS.
You can simply leave your seat and walk through the train to get to your WARS. There is no information in the train on where it is, but you can see it from outside -
so pay attention when boarding. Breakfasts cost 17 zł [4 EUR] on average, and main courses cost around 30 zł [7 EUR]. The selection of dishes is equivalent to a restaurant. You can pay by cash or by card.
small WARS (EIC)
large WARS (IC)
delivered to seat
Using a mobile app developed by WARS, mWARS, you can now order food from the dining car to your seat. The menu is limited to takeaway items and beverages, though.
Though you order using the app, you pay when the food is delivered. You can pay by cash or by card. This service is only operated on EIP, EIC, and IC connections.
Once in a while (every 2 hours or so), a steward/stewardess will also push a cart with sweets and beverages through the train. To purchase something, simply stop the stewardess as she passes
you and pick something. You will have to pay by cash. This service is only operated on EIP, EIC, IC, and TLK connections.
food delivered to seat
steward with cart
You can take your bike
onto all types of trains, and there are special locking mechanisms in place in the more modern trains.
To bring your bike
onto the train, you must, however, buy a special bike ticket - you can do that at a ticket booth or ticket machine. It will cost you
between 2 zł [0.5 EUR] and 10 zł [2.5 EUR].