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Old 04-14-2018, 03:47 PM
 
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Have any of you traveled on Canada's VIA rail network recently? What did you think of the service and accommodations? Would you do it again?
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Old 04-15-2018, 11:34 AM
 
Location: Pure Michigan!
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I traveled from Windsor, ON to Toronto, ON on VIA Rail a couple of years ago. Altogether, it was a pleasant experience with minimal delays, friendly staff, and clean trains. It is a much, much better experience than our own Amtrak, I am sorry to say. I would definitely do it again, as opposed to driving and parking in Toronto.
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Old 04-15-2018, 11:39 AM
 
Location: PNW
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Say, that's an idea! Now that I'm retired I've been thinking about more Amtrak/rail travel for sight-seeing, and I never considered Canada. Sounds interesting.
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Old 04-15-2018, 02:53 PM
 
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Originally Posted by canudigit View Post
I traveled from Windsor, ON to Toronto, ON on VIA Rail a couple of years ago. Altogether, it was a pleasant experience with minimal delays, friendly staff, and clean trains. It is a much, much better experience than our own Amtrak, I am sorry to say. I would definitely do it again, as opposed to driving and parking in Toronto.
Thanks -- we are looking at a multi-day Calgary to Vancouver trip and it sounds like VIA have things under control.
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Old 04-15-2018, 04:15 PM
 
Location: Pure Michigan!
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Ours was just a four hour trip so I can't comment on overnight accommodations, meals, or sleeping arrangements, but overall it was a pleasant experience.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:16 PM
 
Location: Hougary, Texberta
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Originally Posted by TimAZ View Post
Thanks -- we are looking at a multi-day Calgary to Vancouver trip and it sounds like VIA have things under control.
Only challenge is that VIA doesn't run through Calgary. Edmonton to Vancouver via Jasper. If it was out of Calgary it would have been on the Rocky Mountaineer, which is a privately held company.
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Old 04-20-2018, 06:01 AM
 
616 posts, read 346,504 times
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Originally Posted by mikeyyc View Post
Only challenge is that VIA doesn't run through Calgary. Edmonton to Vancouver via Jasper. If it was out of Calgary it would have been on the Rocky Mountaineer, which is a privately held company.
Yes, you are right, I see now the Rocky Mountaineer is separate from VIA (and more $$). After some research it looks like VIA is in the same fix regarding schedules as Amtrak experiences here in the USA. Their passenger train timetables are at the mercy of the freight lines and there are typically delays with the longer routes experiencing more delays and reroutes.
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Old 04-20-2018, 03:12 PM
 
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If you're traveling on the Windsor to Quebec City line (which includes Toronto and Montreal), it's decent. Like the New York City to Washington D.C line, it has decent passenger traffic. For cross-Canada travel, DON'T do it. The lines out west are freight lines with VIA trains given the lowest priority. Sidings are short, and therefore it is not unheard of for for 12 hours trips to turn into 24 hour trips.

Via's trains are somewhat slower than Amtrak's, and of course much slower than the Acela Express.
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