Reading a Russian Train Ticket

We provide an itinerary in English with every Russian, or international, train ticket that we sell outlining all of the important information. However, if you do not read Russian (for Russian domestic and Trans-Siberian tickets), or German (for many of our European tickets), and would like to know what all the information on a train ticket actually means, then we have put together a brief guide for you.

We have included the three paper ticket types that you will most commonly come across, as well as brief guides on what each bit of information means. If you would like to print them out, or save them for future reference, each ticket is available as a PDF by clicking on it. Alternatively, we have a PDF that includes all three tickets.

Russian Domestic Train Tickets

Russian Domestic Train Ticket

Russian International Train Ticket

Russian Continental Train Ticket

Deutsche Bahn European Train Ticket

Russian Third type ticket

Train Types

There are several different types of train used on the Russian rail network that can vary greatly from European trains. These are very brief descriptions of each. The icons are how you will see the train represented in the Real Russia booking system, the Cyrillic characters are how you will find the train represented on the train ticket itself.

  • Firmeny - Firmany Train - ФИРМ - These are the highest quality trains on the Russian network; running on the most popular routes, with the best services and staff.
  • Skory - Fast Train - СК - These are fast sleeper trains used for many of the long distance routes. They possess better facilities than regular passenger trains, though they are not quite of the standard of Firmeny trains.
  • Skorostnoj - Express Train - СКРСТ - These are the quickest trains on the Russian network, serving Moscow, Saint Petersburg and Nizhny Novogorod. They offer European style seating, but no sleeper carriages.
  • Passazhirsky - Passenger Train - ПАСС - Passenger trains cover a wide variety of routes, stopping at nearly every station. This means that they are the slowest sleeper trains on the network; though it does mean they offer the greatest opportunity to get off the beaten track.


There are many variations on the carriage classes available on the Russian train network. Generally tickets are split into three categories, with variations within each of these:

  • Spalny Vagon (First Class) - Each cabin has two lower berths, that act as seating during the day, with nine of these cabins in each carriage. The best services and staff are usually found on First Class.
  • Coupe (Second Class) - Each cabin has four berths, two lower, and two upper. During the day the two lower berths will act as seating. There are nine of these cabins per carriage. Good services and staff are usually found on Second Class.
  • Plaskart (Third Class) - The carriages are open plan, with no doors on any compartment. Within each compartment there are four berths in the same layout as Second Class, with two additional berths lining the corridor wall, one up, one down. All lower berths act as seating during the day. The most basic of services are offered on Third Class.


When booking your ticket in certain classes, particularly those with the letter Э after the class number (i.e. 1, 2 or 3) meals are included. In our system these are represented by this symbol - Meals icon - where 0 equates to the number of included meals. This will change dependent on the length of your journey. On your ticket the number of meals will be represented by a ‘У’ icon followed by the number of meals; so, for example, У4. On each train the dining car will have variable opening hours, so in order to make the most of your included meals please ensure you check these times as soon as possible after you have boarded the train.

Bed Linen

Bed linen is generally included as part of your ticket. Where it is not you will need to purchase some when you board the train. It is not permissible to bring your own.

Passenger information

This will usually include the following information:

  • The passengers name
  • The passport/official government identification number used when purchasing the ticket

It is very important that all this information is correct. It is possible to still board the train with up to three mistakes, but any more than this will require a new ticket to be issued. For further information on this visit our Buying Russian Train Tickets page.

Further Information

For further information regarding purchasing Russian train tickets visit our commonly asked questions page. For more general questions regarding Russian trains, visit our FAQ page. For any other questions, please visit our Knowledgebase, speak to fellow travellers on our Forum, or contact our travel experts directly.