ALLEGRO from Helsinki to St Petersburg | Finland to Russia | The ALLEGRO is the new speed train connecting Helsinki, Finland to St Petersburg in Russia. In only 3 hours and 30 minutes, I was in Russia, having enjoyed a very pleasant and comfortable ride, with lovely views of the country side. This is when I ask myself, why flying when you can take a train.
The do not charge you for extra weight, generally train stations are right in the city center. You avoid security lines at the airport. You can walk around, have a meal at the restaurant car enjoying the panoramic views of the scenery go by. I mean, when I travel, if there is a chance to take a train, especially a speed or high speed train I go for it. In this particular case, I walked to the train station from my hotel in Helsinki, Finland and it took me only 5 minutes, while the airport was approx. 30 minutes away. Once in St. Petersburg, Russia, the same… tool a taxi for 10 minutes and RUB 800.
The train feels and looks bran new. It did several stops, therefore I consider it Speed Train and not High Speed Train. But it was sharp of time both on the departure and arrival. Customs and immigrations are clear right onboard the train, while you are comfortably seated, immigrations agents from both countries pass by the alleys with their PDAs. I must admit that once you cross the boarders to Russia, and all the Russian agents come onboard, with a not very friendly face, it gives you flashbacks of old movies. ha ha ha but it is just that.
The is also a moving bank on the train, that exchanges currency and also helps you, before crossing the borders, to process your TAX refunds.
Bathrooms in each, including one for handicap people. Each seat has an electricity outlet to charge your laptop or smartphones. Seats are very comfortable. Restaurant it takes almost two cars, with the restaurant/cafeteria itself and another car with a nice seating area. Prices are very reasonable, I mean EUR 5 for a tea with a pastry and a bottle of water, it is quite good. So my experience was 100 percent satisfactory and enjoyable. And I would strongly recommended over taking a flight. Next train I will be taking is the Speed train connecting St Petersburg and Moscow. My One Way Ticket was approximately USD 180. CM @ Carlos Melia Recommends
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