The only remaining practical passenger service is the Khartoum to Wadi Halfa run, though there is a monthly train from Atbara to Port Sudan and a western line to Nyala. Sleepers and 1st-class seats are expensive but comfortable; 2nd class is bearable and in 3rd class you really get what you paid for!
Sudan is undergoing a road-building frenzy and all significant towns northeast of El-Obeid will probably be linked by paved roads within the lifetime of this book. Fast comfortable buses, which already link Khartoum to Port Sudan, El-Obeid and Atbara, will replace most of the bokasi that bounce over the desert tracks. It’s best to buy bus tickets a day in advance.
Half a dozen airlines connect Khartoum to all large Sudanese cities. Sudan Airways (83787103; al-Baladaya St; 8am-6pm Sat-Thu, 9-11am Fri) has the most flights, and, along with Air West (83742513; al-Barlman St), the fewest problems with cancellations and overbookings; though neither company will win a reliability award. There’s a domestic airport tax of SDD1500.