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Old 04-11-2010, 09:58 PM
 
337 posts, read 586,992 times
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I often wanted to take a summer and travel America by train, riding in a private car where I could see the landsacpe out the large windows.

Doesn anyone know if this is even doable?
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Old 04-11-2010, 10:07 PM
 
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yes. its called amtrak.
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Old 04-11-2010, 10:14 PM
 
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I often wanted to take a summer and travel America by train, riding in a private car where I could see the landsacpe out the large windows.

Doesn anyone know if this is even doable?

.................................................. ................................................

Absolutely. You need to bear some things in mind though. Amtrak's routes are limited. I have done something similar and would be happy to suggest an itinerary. What city would you begin your travel from? North/South routes on Amtrak are particularly limited. You can go from Seattle to San Diego on the West Coast. However, moving east there are no other North/South routes until you get to New Orleans. Than you can take a train between New Orleans and Chicago.

We learned some lessons doing this. Trains have died so much as a means of transportation that it is difficult to find much of an infrastructure around train stations. There are very few decent hotels within walking distance. Rental car facilities are seldom located near train stations. Nor, will you find good restaurants in the majority of cities anywhere near the train station. Exceptions exist though. There are such facilities around the Los Angeles, Chicago, and Washington, D.C. stations.

Amtrak is bigger in the East than in the West because of territory and population density.

Give me some details and I'll be happy to help you plan a trip and share my experiences.
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Old 04-12-2010, 04:17 AM
 
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Some years ago a distant relative of mine flew from California to NY and then returned in the other direction by train. She had some kind of ticket that allowed her to fly in one direction and return by train in the other direction making as many stops as she wanted along the way.
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Old 04-12-2010, 10:41 AM
 
Location: Airports all over the world
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Try going to the Amtrak website and play around with it. Once you have an idea of what route you want, plug in some dates and see what it gives you. Not sure if things have changed, but it use to be for the private rooms, they would charge one price for rooms until a certain number had been sold. Then the price goes up until so many more rooms have been sold. Then the price goes up again. So it pays to play around with the date of travel. By leaving a couple days sooner or later than your original date you could save several hundred dollars. Also, they usually offer a couple different options on how to get from point A to Point B. Sometimes the long way around will be cheaper than the direct route. The private rooms tend to sell out, so getting one at the last minute can be tough and will be very pricy.

One other thing to watch out for. Even though Amtrak may show they go someplace, it might not actually be by the train. To get to several of their destinations, at some point you might have to transfer to a bus operated for Amtrak.
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Old 04-12-2010, 03:02 PM
 
Location: Seattle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chanceryan View Post
I often wanted to take a summer and travel America by train, riding in a private car where I could see the landsacpe out the large windows.

Doesn anyone know if this is even doable?
Check this one out:

American Orient Express
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Old 04-12-2010, 03:16 PM
 
28,240 posts, read 39,895,668 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chilkoot View Post
Check this one out:

American Orient Express
Dead link. If you read the page you will discover that the last year this was a viable travel option was 2008.

Bankrupt....
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Old 04-12-2010, 03:32 PM
 
Location: Seattle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tek_Freek View Post
Dead link. If you read the page you will discover that the last year this was a viable travel option was 2008.

Bankrupt....
Too bad. We had looked at this a couple years ago and didn't realize they went broke.
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Old 04-12-2010, 03:43 PM
 
28,240 posts, read 39,895,668 times
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Yeah, I hate when cool things like that go out of business. I think Obama should give them some of that money instead of the jerks on Wall Street.
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Old 04-12-2010, 05:50 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,569 posts, read 39,952,759 times
Reputation: 23704
USA by train is best done "Hopping - Freight" Certainly faster & cheaper, possible safer.
Its kinda fun / exciting / adventurous (but been over 3 yrs since I chose that method, tho looking probable in the future.)
hobo + train - Google Search

How-to-do
..HoBo LiNkS.. (lot's-o-dead-links)
Hobo - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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