Saudi Haramain High-Speed Railway aims to increase the frequency of its services this year, from 8 daily trips between Makkah and Madinah via Jeddah and King Abdullah Economic City, to 30.
The trains transported more than 118,000 passengers through 310 trips since its launch on Oct. 11, according to Al-Eqtisadiah newspaper.
The railway management is now studying plans to increase the number of daily trips gradually between the two holy cities, the newspaper said.
According to unnamed sources at the railway company, the plan is to add two trips every month until the total number of daily trips reached 30 by the end of 2019.
This means that ultimately a train would depart every half an hour and the railway would have a capacity to carry 30 million passengers annually, in addition to Haj pilgrims who will be using the train in the upcoming season.
The 450-kilometer railway has five stations.
More than 650 Saudi men and women are employed in the operation of the train stations, the management of the trains and in the maintenance wing.
The total number of workers in various departments and companies involved in the project is 1,200.
It takes an hour and 50 minutes for the trip between Makkah and Madinah and 21 minutes between Jeddah and Makkah.