Morocco Train Travel

Morocco Train Travel

With over 1,000 miles of track, the train system in Morocco is one of Africa’s most expansive and modern rail networks. Morocco’s rail transportation is managed by the Office National des Chemins de Fer (ONCF).

Train travel in Morocco is one of the easiest and fastest ways of getting between cities covering major tourist destinations including Marrakech, Casablanca, Meknes, Fez, Rabat and much more.

Booking your train ticket

Train travel in Morocco is considered the most efficient and cheapest way of getting around. Making reservations for train ticket outside of the country can be difficult except you have them arranged by your hotel or a local tour operator.

If you’re planning on traveling by train, visit the nearest train stations and purchase your ticket to wherever you’re headed in the country. The train run on a regular basis and it is usually not a problem if you either decide to book on the spot or in advance for your trip. Train tickets are reasonably priced in morocco.

Tips for traveling by train in Morocco

There are a few things you need to know before traveling by train in Morocco. If you’re traveling to Marrakech from Tangier or any other major destination and you want to take the overnight train, it is advisable to make reservations for the couchettes.

In a case where they are fully booked, you need not panic as booking a second class is a better option. Asides that, below is a list of some helpful tips for an enjoyable train ride

  • Know your travel destination and the estimated time of your arrival
  • On arriving at your destination especially in touristy towns such as Marrakech and Fes, you’ll find lots of unofficial guides trying to trick you into staying in their hotels or offering cab services. Stick to your original plans regardless of how persuasive they might be and try as much as possible to be polite when responding to them.
  • If you have your own food, you can offer some to your fellow passengers
  • If you aren’t sure of where you’re to drop off, ask a local as they are more knowledgeable about the area and your present location

Passenger classes

Day trains in Morocco have both first and second class seating and are divided into different compartments. The first class can seat about 6 people per compartment while the second class can accommodate 8 people per compartment. So for a more comfortable and enjoyable ride, try to make a first class seat reservation close to window to view the beautiful landscape.

Regardless of your seating position in the train, you’ll always be comfortable. There’s approximately 15 USD price difference between the two classes. You can make reservations for a first class ticket one month ahead of time. When you purchase a first class ticket, you are guaranteed a seat, but when you make reservations for a second class ticket, you are not offered a reserved a seat.

Train travel distances

Here is a list of train travel distance between major destinations in Morocco

  • From Marrakech to Casablanca — 3 hours
  • From Marrakech to Rabat — 4 hours
  • From Marrakech to Fes — 7 hours
  • From Marrakech to Meknes — 6 hours
  • From Tangier to Marrakech — 11 hours (direct overnight)
  • From Tangier to Fes — 5 hours
  • From Casablanca to Fes — 4 hours
  • From Casablanca to Oujda — 10 hours
  • From the International Airport to Casablanca Center — 40 mins

What to expect on the train

When planning on getting around Morocco by train, here are some of the things to expect

  • You should bring your own entertainment as there’s no Wi-Fi or internet service to keep you updated.
  • If you make use of the bathroom more often, make sure you bring your own toilet paper because most trains do not have these items.
  • Carry some cash to buy refreshment such as sandwiches, drinks and snacks on your trip from the cart that goes up and down the train.
  • If you’re traveling during Ramadan, a popular fasting period, bring your own food supply to avoid staying hungry and dehydrated all through the trip

Trains are one of the most popular forms of transportation in Morocco. It is highly recommended to make reservation for your ticket ahead of time. Train travel in Morocco is a pleasant experience for all and Moroccan trains stations are very easy to navigate. Getting around major destinations in the country is considered the best and pleasantest when compared to bus or taxi