Lithuania - General Information

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Country Name

Lithuania (Lietuva)

National Railway System

The national railway AB Lietuvos Geležinkeliai is being restructured into a state-owned holding company with stand-alone passenger, freight and infrastructure businesses as at March 2019.

National Railway Operator

The passenger business LG Keleiviams was formally registered on 28 February 2019 and will gradually take over the Passenger Transport Directorate (Keleivių Vežimo Direkcia) division of Lietuvos Geležinkeliai.

Language

Lithuanian.

Currency

Euro

UIC code

numeric 24; alpha LT

Timetable

Journey Planner

Timetable

Downloadable Timetable

2019/20 is available here. The passenger service route map available here

Printed Timetable

A printed timetable is produced, but appears to be for staff use only. Travel centres such as the one at Vilnius offer individual timetables on photocopied sheets.

Engineering Information

Information about the changes of the passenger train schedules

Bus Information

autobusubilietai.lt provides a journey planner for buses in Lithuania and elsewhere in Europe.

Lux Express operates coach routes in the Baltic region.

Maps

Printed Maps

Web-based Maps

Ticketing

There are no known network tickets, but fares are cheap.

Infrastructure

Infrastructure Authority

The Railway Infrastructure Directorate (Geležinkelių Infrastruktūros Direkcia) is a division of Lietuvos Geležinkeliai.

Network Statement

The current Network Statement can be accessed from the Railway Infrastructure Directorate.

Gauge

"Russian" gauge (1520 mm) except for

  • "Rail Baltica": Trakiszki (Polish border) - Šeštokai - Kaunas (- Palemonas) (standard gauge; 1435 mm). Rail Baltica is mixed gauge between Mockava and Šeštokai but runs parallel to the 1520 mm gauge line between Šeštokai and Kaunas. Kaunas - Palemonas will be separate tracks, except for mixed gauge through the tunnel east of Kaunas.
  • Panevėžys - Rubikiai (750mm).

Electrification

25kV 50 Hz

Rule of the road

Most lines are single track, but on double track sections right hand running applies.

Distances

The Current Network Statement gives overall distances for lines in Annex 1 and a network map with distances for each station in Annex 5.

Other Railways

None.

Tourist Lines

The Panevėžys - Rubikiai 750mm gauge railway.

Metro

None.

Trams

None.

Recent and Future Changes

Future Changes

It had been hoped to finalise electrification of the Vilnius freight bypass in 2018 but this does not seem to have been achieved. There are plans to extend electrification from Radviliskis to Klaipeda by 2022 and from Vilnius into Kaliningrad by 2021.

An EU funding agreement to cover 85% of the costs of building the line from Kaunas to the Latvian border (part of the Rail Baltica II project) was signed on November 18 2016. A contract was awarded in October 2016 to lay standard gauge track on the Kaunas avoiding line to the Kaunas intermodal terminal at Palemonas. The target date for completion of the standard gauge line in the Baltic States is 2025. It is now confirmed it will include a link from Kaunas to Vilnius and be double track and electrified throughout.

Recent Changes

Owing to work to convert the line between Kaunus and Palemonas to dual (1520/1435 mm) gauge in connection with the extension of the Rail Baltica route beyond Kaunus, passenger services on this section were replaced by buses from 22 May until September 2019. A temporary station has been built at Palemonas to facilitate rail/bus transfer.

Passenger services were reinstated between (Vilnius -) Oro uostas (Vilnius airport) and Jašiūnai on 9 Dec 2018. The Oro uostas - Valciunai - Stasylos and Paneriai - Valciunai services were withdrawn on 1 January 2015, although shuttle trains continued between Vilnius and Oro uostas.

Klaipēda - Šilutė was reopened to passenger traffic on 1 October 2018, having been discontinued from 29 May 2011

The Turmantas - Daugavpils (Latvia) border crossing reopened to passengers on 4 April 2018 with a service only at weekends. It had previously closed at the end of May 2015 when the Vilnius - Sankt Peterburg (Russia) train was withdrawn.

Electrification across the border from Kena into Belarus was completed in Autumn 2017 and a through electric passenger service commenced on 10 December 2017.

The Vilnius - Marcinkonys service was cut back to Varėna at an unknown date between December 2015 and November 2016 but had reopened by Mid March 2017.

After some false starts, passenger services were introduced over the standard gauge (1435 mm) Rail Baltica line between Šeštokai and Kaunas on 17 June 2016. These comprised Białystok – Kaunas trains operated by Polish diesel units: two trains each way on Saturdays and Sundays, with a northbound train on Fridays and a southbound train on Mondays. The separate 1435 mm gauge track runs alongside the existing broad gauge route between Šeštokai and Kaunas, in contrast to the original plans for a partly new route. An unexpected consequence was that no LG passenger service resumed south of Marijampole to Šeštokai, so the last broad gauge passenger trains ran on this section on 28 September 2013. At Šeštokai there is now only a platform on one of the new standard gauge tracks, but even so it took until 6 October 2017 before this SG service started to call there.

Passenger services over the border crossing between Stasylos and Benjakonī (Belarus) were reintroduced on 6 June 2015, with one train each way between Grodno/Гродна and Vilnius at weekends only, but withdrawn after 8 November. On 3 August 2011 services to Stasylos had been extended 4.2 km southwards to a new station 1.3 km north of the former Šalčininkai halt and 5.5 km from the Belarus border on the line to Ліда/Lida. This new station was also named Stasylos, the old station being renamed Senosios Stasylos. Services between Stasylos and Benjakonī (Belarus) ceased on 19 September 2008 when the summer-only Vilnius - Simferopol’ train pair ceased running.

Palemonas to Gaižiūnai has lost and regained its single train pair more than once. As at January 2015 a service is running.

Through Vilnius - Druskininkai LG trains and the Vilnius - Warszawa overnight service, both via Parėččė (Belarus), ceased in 2001, resulting in withdrawal of all trains south of Marcinkonys.

Regular services over the Panevėžys - Anykščiai narrow gauge line ceased from 25 March 2001.

Since late 1998 the following lines have lost their passenger service:

  • Jonaitiškai – Kutiškiai
  • [Šiauliai -] Mankiškai - Jonaitiškai - Tauragė - Pagėgiai - Šilutė - Klaipēda (Klaipēda - Šilutė subsequently reopened but has since closed again)
  • Švenčionėliai - Utena
  • Šeštokai - Alytus
  • [Klaipēda -] Kretinga - Skuodas
  • [Vilnius -] Paneriai - Valičiūniai (but has subsequently reopened)

Special notes

None.

See also