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Old 11-28-2011, 12:28 PM
 
4 posts, read 3,745 times
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I hate flying. Correction. I hate flying with a passion. I'm terrified. So, my bf came up with this great idea to try and take Amtrak from NY to CA. The first night we couldn't have a sleeper car due to price so we decided to just deal with it and the rest of the trip we'd have a sleeper. Bad idea. We got off the train after 6 hours. There were crazy people, all the lights were on, it was loud, it was just bad. Bad. He wants to try it again, this time sleeping in hotels. I looked at all their scheduling and it seems impossible. Has anyone ever tried this? Time isn't an issue as we don't have to be there by a certain date. However, I don't want to spend an arm and a leg for it. Thanks.
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Old 11-28-2011, 01:59 PM
Status: "Send HIM back- to Queens!" (set 2 days ago)
 
Location: Eureka CA
8,281 posts, read 11,136,078 times
Reputation: 12605
Not sure what your question was but your experience couldn't have been more different than ours on the Empire Builder. We're currently plotting to take Amtrak to either Denver or Chicago next year to see "The Book of Mormon". Sorry it didn't work out for you.
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Old 12-27-2011, 10:25 PM
 
334 posts, read 1,353,289 times
Reputation: 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by eureka1 View Post
Not sure what your question was but your experience couldn't have been more different than ours on the Empire Builder. We're currently plotting to take Amtrak to either Denver or Chicago next year to see "The Book of Mormon". Sorry it didn't work out for you.

I couldn't agree more. I have nothing negative so say about the trip from Detroit to Montana. I was very impressed with everything. They run a tight ship! Very comfortable and affordable.
Next time though I will pack more food. The dining car was costly for a family of four...and only mediocre. I highly recommend the trip and look forward to doing it many tomes in the future!
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Old 12-27-2011, 11:02 PM
 
Location: City of Angels
2,935 posts, read 4,771,673 times
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you got off after 6 hours? how'd you get back? honestly, sounds like you just dont enjoy travelling or something. i think you're not going to find the answer you're looking for.
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Old 12-28-2011, 12:42 AM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 74,336,032 times
Reputation: 36094
My wife traveled Amtrak between Detroit and San Antonio a couple of times, and really enjoyed it. Nice social atmosphere, where you can amble around and chat with strangers.

Their ticketing system, though, is stone age. Unless you can walk into Amtrack ticket office, getting a ticket is a lot like getting a visa to North Korea. No online or electronic ticketing, you have to be a in place where you can take physical delivery of a paper ticket before travel, which is nearly impossible if you're away from home wanting to return on the train, or you're situated far from an Amtrak station with an agent (most stops do not have an agent). Travel agents can do it, but charge a pound of flesh. Otherwise, you need to have the ticket sent to your by courier, and be able to personally sign for it when it arrives. They will sent it by regular mail if you book far enough in advance. If you're a member of AAA, they'll issue a ticket for about $20.
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Old 12-28-2011, 01:06 AM
 
Location: City of Angels
2,935 posts, read 4,771,673 times
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have no idea what you're talking about jtur. i travelled by amtrak just a couple weeks back (from anaheim to sacramento). booked it online the night before, went to the station, showed my ID, got the tickets, and was on my way. was no hassle at all.
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Old 12-28-2011, 01:18 AM
 
Location: Viña del Mar, Chile
16,411 posts, read 26,261,951 times
Reputation: 16497
I use Amtrak quite often to get to Chicago from where I live in Michigan and always book online, show up to the station about 30 minutes early, go to the Kiosk and print my ticket with no problems at all.

I have to admit, I'm not a huge fan of Amtrak because I love flying, and when I'm on the train the only thing I can think of is "i could have flown across the country in this amount of time". If sitting on a train for 48 hours seems more enjoyable than flying, then all the power to you. It is not all that difficult, you book online just like an airplane, only it is typically more expensive if you are going long distance.
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Old 12-28-2011, 10:19 AM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 74,336,032 times
Reputation: 36094
Quote:
Originally Posted by foadi View Post
have no idea what you're talking about jtur. i travelled by amtrak just a couple weeks back (from anaheim to sacramento). booked it online the night before, went to the station, showed my ID, got the tickets, and was on my way. was no hassle at all.
As I said, it is fine if you can go to a major ticket-issuing station. But most Amtrak stops have no ticket agent. In fact, there is only one ticket agent between San Antonio and Tucson. Anywhere along that route, you would have to drive to San Antonio, El Paso, or Tucson to get your ticket, or obtain it the way I described.

They might have changed some policies, but what I described applied three years ago. Of course, if you live in a big metropolis, you have no idea what I am talking about. You have no idea what it is like to live out here with the rest of us, who are simply treated with contempt by clerks in urban skyscrapers. There are 18 state capitals and two entire states that do not have Amtrak service at all.

Last edited by jtur88; 12-28-2011 at 10:50 AM..
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Old 12-28-2011, 01:56 PM
 
Location: top secret
405 posts, read 1,157,723 times
Reputation: 291
Amwhat??...oh, that!
I haven't taken AmTrak in many years and I'm in no hurry.
The last few trips I took the service was lousy, the crew
was rude, and the trains were late.
Just bite the bullet and take a plane.
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Old 12-28-2011, 04:37 PM
PDD
 
Location: The Sand Hills of NC
8,774 posts, read 14,888,814 times
Reputation: 11886
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
As I said, it is fine if you can go to a major ticket-issuing station. But most Amtrak stops have no ticket agent. In fact, there is only one ticket agent between San Antonio and Tucson. Anywhere along that route, you would have to drive to San Antonio, El Paso, or Tucson to get your ticket, or obtain it the way I described.

They might have changed some policies, but what I described applied three years ago. Of course, if you live in a big metropolis, you have no idea what I am talking about. You have no idea what it is like to live out here with the rest of us, who are simply treated with contempt by clerks in urban skyscrapers. There are 18 state capitals and two entire states that do not have Amtrak service at all.
We have no ticket office in Southern Pines NC but I take my computer generated receipt and put it in the automated ticket kiosk and out comes my ticket. I don't know how long they have been issuing tickets this way but I can't imagine that ticket kiosk are not available at your local Amtrak station.

Look here and check for yourself.
Amtrak - Reservations - Fare Finder
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