The trains travel between Beijing and Guangzhou over a distance of 1,428 miles at speeds up to 186 MPH. The total travel time is about 8 hours, down from more than 20 hours before. In comparison, the distance compares to the track between New York and Key West. Amtrak covers a shorter distance between New York and Miami in about 30 hours.
China's high-speed rail system covers 5,809 miles of tracks today. The construction of the network has come at a high cost. China apparently has assumed debt of nearly $640 billion to create the network, which employed about 100,000 workers per line during the construction.
China plans additional lines which will include four East-West connections as well as four North-East connections by 2020.