Turn Off Ads?
Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Amtrak?

  1. #1
    I can do the Hully Gully IowaRed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Cedar Rapids, Iowa
    Posts
    1,088

    Amtrak?

    My wife has a conference in San Diego in July and we are contemplating taking Amtrak out and possibly renting a vehicle to drive back. I'd like to hear tips, recommendations, experiences, concerning Amtrak. The main reason we aren't flying is because of my fears of flying and heights and I've tried just about everything you can think of to help with that, medication, alcohol, a combination of the 2, and I even went to a hypnotist. I have flown maybe 6-8 times in my life but this point, flying isn't an option so it's driving or train. We have 2 children, one will have just turned 6and one will be one month from turning 8 at the time of the trip.

    I have done a little bit of research on Amtrak and read some good and a lot of bad. I don't fully understand the pricing, the "buckets" thing, but I'm more concerned with the experience for our family than the cost. I realize the accomodations won't be luxurious, quiet, roomy, or filled with entertainment options. Any thoughts or if you have any specific tips about what to take, what accomodations to look for, how to deal with Amtrak, tickets, or anything else would be appreciated.
    More often than not, when someone is telling me a story all I can think about is that I can't wait for them to finish so that I can tell my own story that's not only better, but also more directly involves me.

  2. Turn Off Ads?
  3. #2
    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Cincinnati, OH
    Posts
    34,336

    Re: Amtrak?

    Quote Originally Posted by IowaRed View Post
    My wife has a conference in San Diego in July and we are contemplating taking Amtrak out and possibly renting a vehicle to drive back. I'd like to hear tips, recommendations, experiences, concerning Amtrak. The main reason we aren't flying is because of my fears of flying and heights and I've tried just about everything you can think of to help with that, medication, alcohol, a combination of the 2, and I even went to a hypnotist. I have flown maybe 6-8 times in my life but this point, flying isn't an option so it's driving or train. We have 2 children, one will have just turned 6and one will be one month from turning 8 at the time of the trip.

    I have done a little bit of research on Amtrak and read some good and a lot of bad. I don't fully understand the pricing, the "buckets" thing, but I'm more concerned with the experience for our family than the cost. I realize the accomodations won't be luxurious, quiet, roomy, or filled with entertainment options. Any thoughts or if you have any specific tips about what to take, what accomodations to look for, how to deal with Amtrak, tickets, or anything else would be appreciated.

    When I lived in Des Moines, my girlfriend and I were going to take Amtrak from Osceola to Chicago for 4th of July weekend. We were supposed to leave in the morning and get there by mid-afternoon. When I got up I called them to see if it was going to be on time. My folks had taken ski trips out west and told me to call and see if there would be delays since they had experienced them in the past. I called them and they said the train wasn't expected in Osceola till late afternoon because it was stuck in Nebraska with mechanical problems. We just said the heck with it and drove to Chicago. If I were you, I wouldn't do it.
    Last edited by Chip R; 04-02-2009 at 10:33 AM.
    The Rally Onion wants 150 fans before Opening Day.

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Rally-...24872650873160

  4. #3
    Start the Reactor! *BaseClogger*'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Midland, MI
    Posts
    6,410

    Re: Amtrak?

    My friend takes the train from Kalamazoo to East Lansing on the weekends. He said it is quite an 'experience' in the train station in Kalamazoo and on the train, and that there is almost always a delay. But its cheap and gets him where he needs to go. I think an important factor in your decision might be what its like in your home train station and in the one in San Diego...
    "On-base percentage is great if you can score runs and do something with that on-base percentage," Baker said. "Clogging up the bases isn't that great to me."

  5. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Posts
    1,168

    Re: Amtrak?

    If timing isn't a significant issue, traveling by a train is a great way to travel. It's a different experience to be able to view the country without having to worry about driving, directions, parking, gas, etc and be able to get work done, have a drink, or spend time with the family. I would recommend it provided you don't take the headaches too seriously.

    With the renewed interest and support by the current administration in increasing the ability to travel by train due to high fuel costs, economic development, and environmental concerns, I think traveling by train will be a lot easier and accessible in the future..
    "In our sundown perambulations of late, through the outer parts of Brooklyn, we have observed several parties of youngsters playing 'base', a certain game of ball. Let us go forth awhile, and get better air in our lungs. Let us leave our close rooms, the game of ball is glorious"
    -Walt Whitman

  6. #5
    breath westofyou's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    PDX
    Posts
    42,214

    Re: Amtrak?

    Amtrack between here and Seattle and San Francisco is notoriously late and spotty on being a good alternative.

  7. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Bloomington, IN
    Posts
    273

    Re: Amtrak?

    I've taken Amtrak multiple times and have always had a positive experience.

    If time, both punctuatlity and length of trip, are of little concern, I think it's a fantastic way to travel. As mentioned above, the opportunity to experience the view with the ability to spend your time as you please is quite enjoyable to me.

    I think, as for traveling with kids, it's one of the better options. Two parent tag-team and a more spacious, less restrained environment.

  8. #7
    SERP deep cover ops WebScorpion's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Location
    In the Ether
    Posts
    5,399

    Re: Amtrak?

    I took the AmTrak train from Washington, DC to Cincinnati, OH (Union Station to Union Station?) with a 4-year old daughter a quite few years ago. We loved it! We got a sleeper cabin on the way there and she was itching to pull the bed down all evening. She kept calling the attendant and he was always pleasant and brought her some cookies one time. On the way back we rode in a regular car and spent a lot of time talking to people, looking at the scenery, and walking back and forth to the diner car. This was probably 10 years ago, but I'd do it again if I weren't in a rush.

    "Okay you guys, pair up in threes!" --Yogi Berra

  9. #8
    Titanic Struggles Caveat Emperor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    The 513
    Posts
    12,621

    Re: Amtrak?

    I used to take Amtrak a lot between Washington DC and New York / Boston -- but train service on the East Coast is an entirely different animal from the rest of the country, from what I'm told.

    FWIW, I've always enjoyed my Amtrak experiences.
    Championships Matter.
    23 Years and Counting...


Turn Off Ads?

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Board Moderators may, at their discretion and judgment, delete and/or edit any messages that violate any of the following guidelines: 1. Explicit references to alleged illegal or unlawful acts. 2. Graphic sexual descriptions. 3. Racial or ethnic slurs. 4. Use of edgy language (including masked profanity). 5. Direct personal attacks, flames, fights, trolling, baiting, name-calling, general nuisance, excessive player criticism or anything along those lines. 6. Posting spam. 7. Each person may have only one user account. It is fine to be critical here - that's what this board is for. But let's not beat a subject or a player to death, please.

Thank you, and most importantly, enjoy yourselves!


RedsZone.com is a privately owned website and is not affiliated with the Cincinnati Reds or Major League Baseball


Contact us: Boss | GIK | BCubb2003 | dabvu2498 | Gallen5862 | LexRedsFan | Plus Plus | RedlegJake | redsfan1995 | The Operator | Tommyjohn25