Campaign celebrates return of key passenger rail services

Published on 13/04/2022 at 10:48 am.

Save Our Trains Campaign says return of key passenger services a major win for travelling public, and the first stop on the journey to rebuild passenger rail throughout New Zealand.

KiwiRail announced today the Northern Explorer (Auckland–Wellington) and Coastal Pacific (Picton–Christchurch) services will return to the tracks in September 2022, will take domestic point-to-point passengers, and will run to their pre-2021 schedules.

Save Our Trains spokesperson Dr Paul Callister says the first goal of our #SaveOurTrains campaign has been achieved – maintaining existing inter-city passenger rail services.

He thanked the many New Zealanders who had signed the Save Our Trains petition and supported the campaign.

Dr Callister says the campaign will be approaching KiwiRail for more information about the accessibility and affordability of the restored services to passengers.

“It is important that fares are aimed at a price point affordable to everyday New Zealanders, and this is used as an opportunity to ensure access for those living in the regional communities.”

Dr Callister says today is a celebration, but there is a lot to do long term.

“The next step is to develop our public transport services. That requires the Government to take a leadership role in planning for an integrated public transport network across New Zealand, taking into account accessibility, climate action, and regional development.”

The Save Our Trains campaign was started in late January by concerned members of the public after KiwiRail’s announcement in December 2021 it was removing same day scheduled passenger services throughout New Zealand.

Over 8000 people have signed the Save Our Trains petition.

The petition to Save Our National Passenger Rail Network reads: We call on the Government and KiwiRail to commit to maintaining existing intercity passenger rail services. Furthermore, we ask for a comprehensive national strategy for future passenger rail services built around concern for climate action and economic development.

The petition to Save Our National Passenger Rail Network can be found at:

Press release dated 12 Apr 22. Authorized by Patrick Rooney, from Save Out Trains.

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