Here’s something you don’t see every day. There’s a train with the same style of seating as business class on an international airline flight. Who knew?

Usually overnight trains have sleeping berths, which consist of a bunk bed type deal. Single berths have a lower bunk while a double is the same space but with another bed dropping down from the wall. Not on this train though!

The Train With The Airline Style Flat Bed Seats

People going from Brisbane to Cairns in Australia by train on Spirit of Queensland can expect a 24 hour journey. Operating five times per week, it offers two classes of service, Premium Economy and RailBed.

RailBed features the lie flat seating, as well as a lot of other perks that mirror an airline’s business class. For example, you get two checked bags at 20 kilograms each, plus all inclusive meals served at your seat.


In another eerie coincidence, passengers have an 18.5″ entertainment screen which features on demand entertainment. That, coupled with panoramic windows for views as well as shower facilities promise a very nice trip indeed.

Pillows and a mattress topper are also provided to add extra comfort. Only the best airlines offer mattress toppers to make their flat seats more comfortable, so this is a little bit of welcome luxury.

Buddy Seats and Different Seat Lengths

You will see from the picture at the top of this post that the beds are different lengths, with windows being 190cm and aisles being 170cm. The aisle seat beds are shorter to allow the person at the window to get out. Seats are 51.5cm wide or just over 20 inches, all of which is detailed in the RailBed fact sheet.


For people visiting for a chat who may not be sitting beside you, there is a buddy seat as well. Some airlines have this in their first class cabin, though it is becoming less common to find this. All seats also have USB charging, which is vital these days.

Overall Thoughts

I think travelling by train is a very civilised way of getting around. You can often get amazing views, such as on the Amtrak Cascades service from Seattle to Vancouver, plus there is no faffing around with airport security.

Advance Purchase RailBed sleepers are A$389.25 one way, with A$519.00 being the regular fare. This compares to $A221.40 and A$369.00 for Premium Economy, which isn’t too much extra. For all the information on the service, you can visit the Queensland Rail Travel web site.

Are these airline style seats the future for overnight train travel? Will sleeping berths become a thing of the past? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.

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All images via Queensland Rail Travel.