Ethiopian rail transport is completed under the authority of National Railway Ethiopia network (ERC), which presently contains of 3 electrified standard gauge railway lines: Awash-Weldiya Railway, Weldiya-Mekelle Railway and the Addis Ababa-Djibouti Railway. Other lines are still in the working phase. There is also metro system in the country's capital, the Addis Ababa light rail.
All railways in Ethiopia are operated and owned by Ethiopian state-owned venture, the Ethiopian Railway Corporation. A planned legislation opens rail transport to the private sector, from the construction of rail infrastructure to the operation of the same infrastructure and on to the action of privately owned trains.
This rail system is a light rail transport system. It is the first light rail and quick transit system in sub and eastern Saharan African. Of the 2 line rail lines, the east-west lines extends stretching from TORHILOCH to AYAT Village, and passing via Meskel Square, Legehar, Megenagna, and Mexico Square. The north-south line, passes via Lideta, Menelik II Square, Meskel Square, Legehar, Kaliti and Gotera. Trains on the north south line are white and blue, whilst on the east west line they are white and green. The fares cost 2-6 BIRR. Ethiopia train tickets can be bought at orange colored kiosks next to each station.
The railway starts at the Sebeta Central Station. The city is served by 2 stations in the outskirts, at indole and Furi-labu. The line runs southeast to Adama and Modjo, both towns placed in the Ethiopian Great Rift Valley.
At Adama, the railway turns northeast towards Dire Dawa, and then it goes to Djibouti.
The couch section is separated into VIP and regular parts with regular couch rooms willing to help triple bunk beds namely the middle, upper and lower bunks each with changing fares.
This railway construction is a standard gauge railway, that will expand the area of northward Ethiopian National Railway Network and links Mekelle to Addis Ababa and Djibout via the Awash-Weldiya railway.
The railroads primary objective is to link the north of Ethiopia with the Addis-Ababa- Djibouti railway at the Awash junction and so linking it with the world economy via the port of Djibouti and also with southern parts of Ethiopia with its capital, Addis Ababa.
The first railway in Ethiopia was the 782km metre gauge line linking the Addis Ababa, with the Djibouti port in the country of the same name. The primary section, from Djibouti to Dire Dawan in Ethiopia, opened in 1901, but extra construction was delayed by bankruptcy of the real railway company, and the line to Addis Ababa was not done until 1917.
On the freedom of Djibouti responsibility for the line passed to a new firm jointly owned by the governments of the 2 nations. Anyway, in the late 20th/early twenty-one centuries the line was permitted to languish and deteriorate, service become irregular and line eventually closed.
In 2016, a latest 760km standard gauage electrified railway opened from Addis Ababa to Djibouti, changing the metre gauge railway. Approximately 660km of this line within Ethiopia. The latest railway, along with the Addis Ababa tramway, is operated on behalf of the administration by the Chinese contractors liable for their construction.
Ethiopian Railway Corporation has also offered contracts for construction of other lines:
491km line from Addis Ababa to Bedele
260km line from Hara Gebeya to Mekele
390km line from Awash to the Addis Ababa to Djibouti port to Hara Gebeya.
Future plans contain a line from Hara Gebeya to a fresh port at Tadjurah in Djibouti.
Addis Ababa has a latest tramway system, 32km in extend, opened in 2015.
Cheap train tickets Ethiopia, Addis Ababa or at the city center office. There is presently no online booking.
International tickets between Djibouti and Addis Ababa must be bought at least the day before. There are generally places accessible. Local train tickets in Ethiopia can be bought the same day, although Ethiopia train bookings the day before is advisable in case there is a power cut at the tickets sell out or ticket office.
You can also buy Ethiopia railways train tickets in the city center, at least 1 day before the trip. The ticket office is close to the old railway station, next to Leghar metro station, under the bridge on the Churchill Avenue side. You get a voucher that needs to be exchanged for a right train tickets booking at Addis Abeba Lebu station an hour before departure. A passport is needed to buy a voucher. You can also your book standard-gauge railway (SGR) train tickets in advance at the same time.
Book train tickets in Ethiopia are sold at the new Dire Dawa station, and also in the city centre at the EDR (Ethio-Djibouti Railway) office, conveniently placed in the old railway station in the Kezira place.
Buy train tickets Ethiopia at the station or at the city center. There is presently no internet booking.
It is reported that tickets can be bought in the city centre, in a building placed in Salines Ouest, approximately ten minutes walk from the central twenty-seven Juin Square. Salines Quest is the road leading off from the traffic light at the intersection of Sheikh Osman Avenue and Roosevelt Avenue, going to southwest. When you reach the French Culture institute, keep walking for approximately fifty meters until the Al Rayan cafe. Cross the road and go into the square of the Maison Medical building. Train tickets from Djibouti to Addis Ababa or train tickets from Addis Ababa to Djibouti at least seventeen hours, before the train departure, but they are not sold more than two days in advance. The office issues a voucher with must be exchanged for the right tickets at the station ticket office at least an hour before departure.
Apart from the big railway infrastructure (dry ports, freight yards) considered to handle freight trains, the railways also spec railway stations for passenger trains. These railway stations along the railway most often have a one platform for passengers to enter or to leave trains. These platforms permit access without having the need to use strains. Some have 2 platforms linked via footbridge above the overhead catenary system. The platforms are roofed to save passengers against wind, sun and rain.
Railway stations for passengers trains forever have a station building directly linked to the back of the principal platform. Consequently, all railway stations with a one platform have area for only one platform line and do not permit the presence of more than 1 train at the platform at the same time. In contrast, railway stations with 2 platforms have the area for 2 or 3 platform lines. All platforms are between 200 and 400 metres long.
The station buildings are used for refreshments and for ticketing and contain waiting rooms and even room for prayers. They have media accessible (at least water, electricity). The outer appearance of station building of the Addis Ababa-Djibouti Railway presents some type of architectural eclecticism including Ethiopian elements with some Chinese version and rounded elements.