The Overland is the iconic train that journeys between Adelaide and Melbourne in Australia and it has been serving the path for more than 130 years, from 1887. The train experience is through country side which is a big part of Australia’s heart and also heritage. The name of this train is the ‘Overland’, even so it may get mistakenly called the ‘Overlander’ very often. The Overland train was Australia’s first interstate passenger train running in between state capitals. The train first started in 1887 as soon as the railway line between Melbourne and Adelaide was constructed. This train had been to start with run as a joint venture with the Victorian Railways Corporation and the South Australian Railways Organization and at that period it was named the ‘The Inter-colonial Express’ and later referred to as the ‘The Adelaide Express’. The train runs between Melbourne’s Spencer Street station (now called Southern Cross Station) and the Adelaide train station in North Terrace, Adelaide. The Overland used to operated during the night and integrated sleeping carriages and seated carriages and for some time a catering carriage.

The train was renamed as “The Overland” back in 1926. In the later part of the 1940s a new fleet of steel-bodied air conditioned carriages was built and included with the train. The first steam train locomotives were swapped out with diesel train locomotives in 1953. In 1997 the Overland was taken over by Great Southern Railway following becoming sold off from the government. The service is currently run by a private corporation using the trading name of Journey Beyond. After 120 years of operating during the night, the timetable was changed to being a daytime train. The train trip now operates twice weekly each way between Melbourne’s Southern Cross Station, which is in Spencer Street, in Melbourne to the Adelaide Parklands Station in Keswick, in Adelaide. The Overland does stop at several towns along the way to pick up as well as drop off passengers and goods. The Overland now departs Southern Cross each and every Tuesday and Saturday morning at 8:05am, reaching the Adelaide Parklands Terminal at 5:40pm. The journey lasts pretty much all day. Returning, the Overland departs Adelaide Parklands Terminal at 7:45am and reaches the Southern Cross train station around 6:50pm. The train provides a couple of classes of travel, standard and premium (first class) and has a dining carriage.

There is some political uncertainty surrounding The train. Costs of air travel between Melbourne and Adelaide are priced much less than the Overland costs which makes it a hardship on the train to be reasonably competitive considering the journey times. From 2007, the Overland continues to work with a $1.5 million yearly input coming from the Victorian State Government. The South Australian Government props up the service included in a $1 million deal with the business. Commentary happen to be made with the financial assistance may not be continuing with the present understanding with the Victorian State Government set up until June 2023. The South Australian government quit supporting the train back in 2018. The actual argument for the subsidies will be the provision of a train program to outlying towns in between Melbourne and Adelaide as among those towns are very dependent on the train service as their sole way of transportation for many.


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