SGR booking is now possible through mobile money, online, and a variety of other methods. This allows the travellers to easily purchase the tickets for the Madaraka Express which has become very popular due to its convenience, safety and speed.
As the name Madaraka suggests, the SGR is all about freedom and convenience. It now ranks high as a commuter favorite in the Nairobi-Mombasa route. Compared to buses, it is much safer, more comfortable, much faster and most importantly the service is good.
Hassle free SGR booking
Due to its popularity, there is quite a high demand for the fast and efficient Madaraka Express such that it gets fully booked several days in advance. To make it easier for travellers, the railway company has several methods for the SGR booking. These range from the mobile money such as Mpesa, online platforms or a physical visit to the SGR terminal. The other option is to call the SGR booking office where a representative will assist in the process.
Unless you are purchasing several tickets for a big group, it is possible and easy to book the SGR tickets well in advance without going to the station. For travel groups of over 20 passengers, it is best to visit the terminal and purchase the tickets over the counter.
SGR booking via MPESA
To do this, all you need is a phone and Safaricom line
- Dial *639# and a pop up self-service menu will appear.
- Select the inter-county (morning) or express (afternoon) train. –The SGR inter county train for morning travel stops at all the stations along the route to drop and/or pick passengers. If in Nairobi, this leaves at 8:20 am while the other one leaves Mombasa at 8:00am. – The Madaraka Express for the afternoon does not stop at the county stations, safe for occasions where it needs to give way to another train moving in the opposite direction. The Nairobi-MSA express departs from Nairobi at 2:35 pm while the MSA to NBI departs from Mombasa at 3:15pm
- Choose your departure location (Nairobi, Mombasa, Athi River, Emali, Kibwezi, Miaseny, Mariakani, Mtito Andei or Voi)
- Select destination (Mombasa, Nairobi, Voi, Mtito Andei, Mariakani, Miaseny, Kibwezi, Emali or Athi River,)
- Pick your preferred date of travel.
- Choose whether you want to travel economy class for ksh 1000 or first class for ksh 3000.
- Enter the number of tickets you want to book. You can book up to a maximum of ten.
- Indicate if any, the number of children between 3 and 11 years among the travel party. They will be charged half price.
- Enter your name and id number.
- Select the preferred time of payment. You can either choose to pay at that moment you are booking or choose to pay later. If you select the pay now option, you will be directed on how to finalize the payment. If you choose the pay later option, you will receive a text message with the payment details.
- The message will indicate the pay bill number to be used, payment id and amount due.
- You will receive text indicating payment receipt and ticket information.
- At this point you will only need to print your boarding pass at the self-service machine at your boarding station on the day of travel or a few days in advance if you so wish.
Booking Madaraka Express online
The other convenient SGR booking is through the Kenya railway corporation’s website. Follow the steps below for online SGR booking ;
- Using your internet browser, open krc.co.ke
- Select the Preferred train between the inter-county and express. The Madaraka Express for the afternoon does not stop at the county stations, safe for occasions where it needs to give way to another train moving in the opposite direction. The SGR intercounty train for morning travel stops at all the stations along the route to drop and/or pick passengers.
- Choose your departure location (Nairobi, Mombasa, Athi River, Emali, Kibwezi, Miaseny, Mariakani, Mtito Andei, Voi)
- Select destination (Mombasa, Nairobi, Voi, Mtito Andei, Mariakani, Miaseny, Kibwezi, Emali, Athi River,)
- Pick travel date
- Choose preferred coach (second or first class) and the number of passengers
- Enter the details of each passenger ( This includes full names, ID/Passport number, and Country)
- Choose mode of payment (i.e Mpesa)
You will receive the details such as MPESA pay bill number and amount to pay. Once make the payment, you will get a confirmation message. Use this to print the ticket on the self-service machines at your departure station.
SGR booking through an agent
There is also another method to book SGR tickets for those who find the Mpesa method too complicated.
All you have to do is call the SGR customer service desk. An agent will then proceed to take your travel details, name and phone number. You will then receive a text message with the payment details.
You can then proceed to pay for your tickets via mobile money and you will receive your ticket details on your phone. At this point, you will only need to print your boarding pass at the self-service machine at your departure station on the day of travel or before.
Benefits of advance SGR booking
- It is fast and convenient
- You do not need to waste time and transport money going to the departure terminal to purchase the ticket when using mobile or online methods..
- Advance booking assures that you will get a seat on your preferred travel date and time.
- Booking available 24/7
- Avoids the hassle of purchasing over the counter tickets on the travel date
Technology is enabling travelers to easily do SGR booking with ease and convenience. In particular, the mobile money and online booking provides a self-service solution that travellers can use anytime from anywhere without calling or visiting the SGR booking office.