Local Trains are the major means of transport in Mumbai. Most of the city-dwellers rely on Mumbai Suburban Railway to travel within the metropolis.
The extensive network of Railways has three lines, namely the Western Line, the Central Main Line and the Harbour Line. Being a linear city, Mumbai is totally covered by local train network. The area from Churchgate to Virar is covered under the Western line via Western Suburbs, while the Central Main Line starts from Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) and travels to Kalyan through the Central Suburbs and Thane.
Kurla is the interchange point with the Central Main Line. Between Mumbai CST and Vadala, there is a common stretch of the Harbour Line. However, this line divides into two spurs, the major one heads for the Eastern Suburbs, Navi Mumbai and eventually Panvel, while the other one goes till Mahim on the Western Line and runs parallel upto Andheri. Its interchange stations are sited at Bandra and Andheri.
All the local trains start operations usually after 04:00 hours in the morning and close maximum by 01:00 hours. Traveling in second class is definitely very cheap, but it is exceptionally crowded. For tourists, it is better to travel in the expensive first class, rather than experience any trouble in the economy class. During rush, office or peak hours, one should avoid traveling in local trains because they are jam-packed.
The peak hours extend from 08:30 till 10:30 towards CST and Churchgate and from 17:30 to 20:30 pm in the opposite direction. For women, there are special coaches on both classes in all the trains. They are quite better and safer than the common ones. Local trains are the most common and easy means to travel in the city. In case, there is a group of people, then prefer taxis and auto-rickshaws over local trains in Mumbai.