Traveling By Train

Discussion in 'Transportation' started by centurythree, Apr 1, 2008.

  1. centurythree

    centurythree DIS Veteran

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    I'm bringing two guests down from the mid-Atlantic. One of them is terrified of airplanes. However, she's also a smoker so the thought of driving down and having to constantly stop so she can take a break terrifies me.

    So, it just occurred to me that traveling down via Amtrak might be an option. However, I've never traveled by train.

    Do you think it's a good or bad idea?

    I've found that I can make this either a very cheap or very expensive travel option. I've heard rumors of scary people in train stations, is this a real concern? Are there scary people on the train? Are the coach seats comparable to airline seats, or should I upgrade to roomettes? (I feel silly doing that for a relatively short trip.)

    Thanks in advance!
     
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  3. LisaNJ25

    LisaNJ25 DIS Veteran<br><font color=aqua>I paid $300 back i

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    These is no smoking on the regular amtrak. There is a smoking section on the Auto train.

    s far as scary people in coach.. I can let you know in a few weeks. I am taking the train from Newark, NJ in 3 weeks.

    Also to get it cheaper you need to book early. I am paying $180 RT.
     
  4. NJRRK

    NJRRK DIS Veteran

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    On the regular Amtrak trains to smoke you must get out of the train at certain stations, AND stay near the train so you can get back on before the train leaves the station.

    On Autotrain there is a designated smoking area on the lower level of the lounge car.
     
  5. OlderMan

    OlderMan DVC Member Since 1997

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    Friends of ours recently came down from Upstate NY and used AMTRAK.

    Their reaction: NEVER AGAIN!!!!!

    Besides being late (a given), they booked last minute so there were no sleepers available. They said that most of the people seated in their car were "undesirables." Unwashed, unshaven, smelly......

    When we met them after they arrived earlier that afternoon, they looked awful and were very tired since they didn't sleep much,

    They had only a slightly better trip back north a week later.
     
  6. LisaNJ25

    LisaNJ25 DIS Veteran<br><font color=aqua>I paid $300 back i

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    Hmm maybe I should bring extra deodorant and soap to hand out
     
  7. pepe of ohio

    pepe of ohio DIS Veteran

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    We've used Amtrak for maybe the last 10 trips to WDW, that's from northeast Ohio to Kissimmee Florida and saying that the train is full of unwashed degenerates is hog wash. Our trips have been perfect, except the lateness of getting in but all in all, train travel is relaxing and comfortable. coach seats are comfortable for one night, our trip takes 27 hours and riding coach is doable. You may encounter 1 or 2 odd people but for the majority, its a nice bunch of travelers.
     
  8. Vijoge

    Vijoge <font color=teal>This one isn't itchy or scratchy<

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    I have ridden AMTRAK from Chicago to Seattle, Denver, New Orleans, New York, Washington DC, and Ft Lauderdale. I think this is an exaggeration, to say the least.
     
  9. DIZBOUND

    DIZBOUND DIS Veteran

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    I too would be traveling from NJ. I can never find anything close to 180RT per person. Are you also bringing your car? It is coach and not a sleeper I assume? Iget 580 for 4 one way and then almost 300 for the car. Cheaper to fly.
     
  10. Vijoge

    Vijoge <font color=teal>This one isn't itchy or scratchy<

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    Oh yes, most, if not all, of the time it will be cheaper to fly than to take the train. I frequent a rail related message board and I'm sure there isn't a member there who rides AMTRAK because it's cheaper than flying.
     
  11. centurythree

    centurythree DIS Veteran

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    One or two unusual people is fine with me . . . that's better odds than traveling by plane, in fact.
     
  12. LisaNJ25

    LisaNJ25 DIS Veteran<br><font color=aqua>I paid $300 back i

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    This trip I am doing the regular Train, Not the Auto Train. I am catching it in Newark, NJ. For the AutoTrain you have to drive to Virginia.

    We did the Autotrain last summer.. well one way anyway.. our return train was canceled and we had to drive home.

    We paid I want to say around $750-$775 RT.. The kids were free since there was a promo going on.
     
  13. NJBILL

    NJBILL Always Keep An Eye To The Sky

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    We will be taking our 5th trip with the kids from Philly in August on Amtrak.

    Trains always run late, and in the summer 2-4 hours is not unusual, just plan accordingly.

    As far as cost, you can get RT from Philly for about $200 now in Coach. Sleepers are more, but your meals are included in the price.

    Train fares have tiered pricing, so generally, the early you book, the cheaper it is...as the train fills up..the prices get higher..especially on the sleepers.
     
  14. JMLBrats

    JMLBrats DIS Veteran

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    Do you remember when they offered that promo (what time frame?) I've heard that they usually offer that in the summer, but I wasn't sure when. I have a reservation on hold for one way on the autotrain w/a bedroom and bringing our van for $756.40-I don't know if I can get a better deal than that. With gas prices going up and the fact that we'd probably stay in a hotel once or preferably (if it's up to me) twice on the way down (we're coming from new england) I figured that the train will only be costing us about $200 more. I don't enjoy the train, but I like the idea of being there by morning and not having the stress of driving. But a friend of mine mentioned there have been some derailments lately, anyone else hear about this?
     
  15. LisaNJ25

    LisaNJ25 DIS Veteran<br><font color=aqua>I paid $300 back i

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    It has been the first week of May they past 2 year when the released the promo. I want to say it was from June till the second week of September. I know it went into Sept since our return trip was supposed to be Labor Day.

    As far as delays. We never arrived into Sanford until 6pm. No derailments but we hit a tree that had fallen on the tracks from a storm. My return trip was canceled because of a derailment.
     
  16. JMLBrats

    JMLBrats DIS Veteran

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    Wow! And we complained when the train got in an hour late! DH would have a fit if we got in that late. I'd never hear the end of how we could've just driven! Someone else I know said that her mom was on the autotrain last year and they were delayed for a couple of hours due to a guy who was apparantly drunk and playing around and got hit by the train and was killed. She said everyone on the train knew what happened. My kids would be horrified.
     
  17. NJRRK

    NJRRK DIS Veteran

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    OFF TOPIC OFF TOPIC OFF TOPIC

    LISANJ25 - Where is "johnny's" from your signature? DW and DD love hotdog joints. That sign looks familiar is it on 46 in Great Meadows?

    I NOW RETURN YOU TO YOUR REGULARLY SCHEDULED TOPIC.
     
  18. NJBILL

    NJBILL Always Keep An Eye To The Sky

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    V863 - 50% off companion to/from Newark
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    Southern Routes


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    Order a FREE Orlando Magicard and save 20% off rail fare to/from all Central Florida stations on Auto Train and the Silver Service. Cannot be booked via Amtrak.com. Must call 1-800-USA-RAIL to book. Some restrictions apply. Thanks shelly_shell for the new promotion code!

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  19. LisaNJ25

    LisaNJ25 DIS Veteran<br><font color=aqua>I paid $300 back i

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    Yep, thats Hot Dog Johnny's on Rt 46 :)
     

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