Gautrain, we love you, we do!

My first Gautrain experience, OR Tambo – Sandton, 21 February 2011

I was so excited that I finally had the opportunity to check out the Gautrain. Today Meetings Africa was held at the Sandton Convention Centre so I flew in from Cape Town to attend this conference. Because I’m flying early tomorrow morning again to Pemba Island, I wanted to stay close to the airport so I can just hop on a shuttle in the morning. Life Hotel OR Tambo is about 3 km from the airport and they already checked me in this morning at 8h30 without a surcharge which I really appreciate. After dropping off my luggage I had the shuttle drop me of at Rhodesfield Station. The driver suggested he’d drop me off there instead of going back to OR Tambo. The station, what a pleasure! It is beautiful and so well organized. I was immediately attended to and I could pay for my ticket with my credit card which is really very convenient. All the staff at the station was super helpful and directed me all the way to the Platform. Oh how lovely! It felt like being in Holland for a bit. I LOVE traveling by train, well-organized trains, not to be misunderstood. And the Gautrain is very well organized. Announcements of updates were broadcasted and the station and the train were both super clean and very modern. Within 15 minutes we arrived in Sandton and it had only cost me ZAR 31, ZAR 21 for the ticket and ZAR 10 for the goldcard which I can use the next time again. But then I ran into a friend and I got a bit upset. She’d paid ZAR 100 from the airport which is only 5 minutes away from Rhodesfield Station. Now this I think is SO wrong. How can it be such a big difference between 1 station and the other? I don’t understand that this needs to be done so obviously I tweeted about it. Still have to check what the reply was. Can’t get onto the internet at the moment. But don’t you think that the Gautrain would be more popular if it was more affordable from the airport? If you’re traveling with a family it will be cheaper to get onto a private shuttle to Sandton..Anyway, I still loved the experience of traveling by train in South Africa. I hope we get a few more of those…

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