China trip – 14. Beijing’s metro, close copy of London Underground

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The Chinese are the master of counterfeiters.  But not always in a bad way.

My journey to go from where I live in Harrow in outer London (zone 5, Metropolitan line) to the middle of the city is something like £3.70 I think one way.   Going on the metro in China is something like 20-50p.

Beijing’s metro has been going since 1969 and has 345 stations.   London Underground has 270 but has been going since 1863.  Some of it quite clearly is influenced by London

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I think this was Beijing’s main central railway station.  The individual stations are named with their English transliteration, but each line has just a number as well as a colour.

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Stations can be very grand in their appearance with this large hanging pictures.

What’s a bit different, is the tougher security, X-ray machines which you are required to put your luggage through at every station, and they still have ticket offices, whereas the London Underground requires payment only by a machine meaning ticket offices are almost a thing of the past.    The Chinese tube has a loud bell ringing when the doors are about to shut.

13. Tiananmen Square

15. Beijing train museum

 

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