Exploring Shanghai with the Trolley Bus

Welcome to Shanghai, a city that never fails to amaze with its vibrant culture, stunning architecture, and bustling streets. While there are many ways to navigate this sprawling metropolis, one mode of transportation that offers a unique and memorable experience is the trolley bus. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the trolley bus system in Shanghai, including the different lines, how to buy a ticket, and the operating times.

Discovering the Different Trolley Bus Lines

Shanghai’s trolley bus system is an extensive network that covers various parts of the city, making it a convenient and eco-friendly option for both locals and tourists. Currently, there are four trolley bus lines in operation:

Line 20: The Bund Sightseeing Route

If you’re looking to soak in the beauty of Shanghai’s iconic waterfront area, Line 20 is the perfect choice. This route takes you along the scenic Bund, offering breathtaking views of the city skyline and the Huangpu River. Don’t forget to bring your camera to capture the stunning architecture and vibrant atmosphere of this historic area.

Line 14: The Cultural Heritage Route

For those interested in exploring Shanghai’s rich cultural heritage, Line 14 is a must-ride. This route takes you to some of the city’s most famous cultural landmarks, including the Shanghai Museum, Yuyuan Garden, and the Old City God Temple. Immerse yourself in the history and traditions of Shanghai as you hop on and off the trolley bus at these fascinating destinations.

Line 9: The Shopping Paradise Route

If you’re a shopaholic, Line 9 is your ticket to retail therapy heaven. This route passes through some of Shanghai’s most popular shopping districts, such as Nanjing Road and Huaihai Road. Hop on the trolley bus and indulge in a day of shopping, exploring the trendy boutiques, department stores, and local markets that line these bustling streets.

Line 18: The Foodie Adventure Route

For food enthusiasts, Line 18 offers a delectable journey through Shanghai’s culinary scene. This route takes you to various food markets and street food hotspots, allowing you to sample a wide array of local delicacies. From xiaolongbao to scallion pancakes, prepare your taste buds for a gastronomic adventure as you hop on and off the trolley bus to savor the flavors of Shanghai.

Buying a Ticket for the Trolley Bus

Getting a ticket for the trolley bus is a straightforward process. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you navigate the ticketing system:

  1. Locate the nearest trolley bus stop. You can find these stops along the designated routes, usually marked with a sign.
  2. Approach the ticket booth or vending machine at the stop.
  3. Select the desired ticket type. Shanghai’s trolley bus system offers various ticket options, including single-journey tickets and day passes.
  4. Insert the required payment. Cash is accepted at the ticket booth, while vending machines usually accept both cash and digital payment methods.
  5. Collect your ticket and any change if applicable.
  6. Validate your ticket before boarding the trolley bus. Look for the ticket validation machine near the entrance and insert your ticket as indicated.
  7. Enjoy your ride on the trolley bus!

Operating Times and Frequency

The trolley bus operates during the following hours:

  • Monday to Friday: 6:00 am to 10:00 pm
  • Saturday and Sunday: 7:00 am to 10:00 pm

During peak hours, trolley buses run at a frequency of approximately 10-15 minutes. Outside of peak hours, the frequency may vary slightly, but you can expect a trolley bus to arrive at a stop every 20-30 minutes.

It’s important to note that operating times and frequency may be subject to change, so it’s always a good idea to check the official Shanghai trolley bus website or inquire at the ticket booth for the most up-to-date information.


Exploring Shanghai with the trolley bus is not only a convenient and eco-friendly way to get around but also an opportunity to experience the city from a unique perspective. Whether you’re sightseeing along the Bund, immersing yourself in the city’s rich cultural heritage, indulging in a shopping spree, or embarking on a foodie adventure, the trolley bus lines in Shanghai have something for everyone. So, hop on board, sit back, and enjoy the ride!

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