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Made in gb
Calculating Commissar




Frostgrave

 Mad Doc Grotsnik wrote:

As a bit of a poncey snob when given the choice, I travel First Class. It’s really not that expensive if I book far enough in advanced, and the carriages tend to be quieter, let alone the extra comfort.


And on some British trains at least, it's cheaper than regular class by the time you factor in the free coffee and wifi.


I've done a few long distance train rides but they've all been overnight on sleepers and they've been great. Even the longish train rides have been vastly superior to doing the drive. You get a bit less freedom in terms of stops and routes, but you can switch off the whole time, wander about, play some board games, watch some movies or whatever.


Definitely give it a go. Worst case is that you all hate it and you rent a car to get home

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/12/07 10:01:48


 
   
Made in us
Decrepit Dakkanaut





Glorious Nation of U.S.S.A!

 cuda1179 wrote:
My son is turning 10, and has always had a thing for trains. At the same time, I am wanting to take our family on a vacation. As I live relatively close to an Amtrak station, I was thinking renting a family suite and heading west from Omaha to San Fransisco. This will allow a bit of relatively unplugged family time without needing to worry about drving while also giving us all one of the most beautiful scenic tours of the US.


I was just wondering what other people's experiences are, and if spending 45 hours on a train each way would be worth it.


There are lots of youtube channels dedicated to the Amtrak riding experience including showing off the various cabins. If you're taking two adults and a kid, you'll probably want the full sleeper cabin and not the tiny roomette. I haven't personally been on that type of train but it's on my bucket list so have looked into it.
   
Made in ru
Lone Wolf Sentinel Pilot





Russia

Through the window you can see only trees and sometimes bridges, the constant banging of bumpers, a problem with charging devices, quickly spoiling food, annoying fellow travelers and a buzzing head. Not worth it, the plane or the car is better.

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Made in gb
Decrepit Dakkanaut




UK

The "click-click click-click" isn't bumpers bumping, its the wheels going over gaps in the metal track. Which are both a function of its construction and also a measure used to give the metal a bit of room along its length to expand when heated.

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Lord of the Fleet






London

 Freakazoitt wrote:
Through the window you can see only trees and sometimes bridges, the constant banging of bumpers, a problem with charging devices, quickly spoiling food, annoying fellow travelers and a buzzing head. Not worth it, the plane or the car is better.


The endless sky and clouds, constant engine noise, problem using electronic devices at all, annoying fellow travellers and a ruined head from the pressure makes the plane better than the car?
   
Made in gb
Calculating Commissar




Frostgrave

 Freakazoitt wrote:
Through the window you can see only trees and sometimes bridges, the constant banging of bumpers, a problem with charging devices, quickly spoiling food, annoying fellow travelers and a buzzing head. Not worth it, the plane or the car is better.


Air travel is awful - having to get to and wait around in airports, then being squished into a tiny bench on a noisy machine for a couple of hours eating bland food with that constant noise and pressure changes. Essentially no views apart from a couple of minutes at each end.

Long distance car drives are pretty awful too - tedium for the driver who has to pay attention or crash, nausea for the passengers if they try and read, pretty dull views of interstates for most of it, being stuck in a seat. The constant engine and wind noises.

Trains are better on most counts - quieter, room to move, no need to pay attention. Get a sleeper cabin and you can even lay down (albeit it feels like you're in a coffin), or sit around a table. If only they didn't take so long or cost so much they'd be perfect.
   
Made in gb
Decrepit Dakkanaut




UK

Yeah unless its rush hour you can often have room to take a walk on the train.

My issues today with trains are that in the UK they cost WAY too much (esp if you don't pre-plan 6 months in advance after spending an hour crawling the internet for every discount ticket website you can find and ending up building some strange route that has you holding a dozen tickets on the day); and that they've pushed more and more for the regular business commuter (because its too expensive for casual trips out) so luggage space is tiny.

I've noticed that the over-head holders that used to be ok, can often on modern trains only JUST hold a briefcase - not even a modest bag on wheels. Meanwhile every few carriages or so they take out one pair of seats for some bag space, which often as not is full very quickly.
So I tend to find if I'm travelling with luggage I end up sitting or standing in the aisle/doorways.


The victorians had the right idea - luggage space and porters on the stations! But then again they embraced trains in a big way; meanwhlie post WW2 UK government kind of abandoned trains.




Oh and to add to bonuses over air travel - whilst you don't have space for your luggage always; at least on the train your luggage and bags are all with you. You don't have that nightmare of waiting to see IF your bag comes around on the belt after you get off the plane (and waiting lord knows how long for that to happen in the first place); and you don't have to worry about stuff being broken because low level staff/machines were throwing your bag around like its a balloon at a party.

This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2021/12/08 12:57:32


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Made in gb
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Ahhh. Luggage space.

In my yoof, a mere 20 years ago, our bikes would go in the Guard’s Van. As would we. It was great, we could smoke in there.

Now? Now?

No guard van. At all. Done away with. And so the selfish illegitimates that board the train, which runs on a single line (scotching the theory of privatisation) leave their bloody stupid folding bikes where the rest of us have to stand - and then get all Karen on you when you shift two or three to protect yourself from broken ankles with “how daaaaaaaaare you touch my pathetic little Clown Bike!

Well, good sir. You left it as a trip hazard, and I care far more about the next person boarding the train than I care about your selfish arsed and over priced property. Get rekt.

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Made in us
Master of the Hunt





Philadelphia

I took a train from Philly to NY and connected to a train to Boston for a bike race and then back the next day. That was.... exhausting. Boxing the bike + putting on the train was also a headache

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/12/08 20:45:44


   
Made in us
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After living in Japan, everyday is a disappointment here in the US! Traveling by train is without a doubt the best way to see a country. I went from southern Kyushu all the way to northern Hokkaido using only trains! But alas, I've heard good and bad things about Amtrak's cross country routes in the states, so YMMV.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/12/08 22:01:28


 
   
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Keeper of the Adeptus Arbites Flame






Cairo, Egypt

dewd11 wrote:
After living in Japan, everyday is a disappointment here in the US!


Words to live by.

Unless of course you need shoes above size 8. Then America is paradise.

As for trains, never did them as a family, did some longish trips my myself or with friends in China and Vietnam but my only Amtrak experience has been the NY to DC line.

Definitely would do a train before trying to drive that distance!

 
   
Made in gb
Lord of the Fleet






London

 Kid_Kyoto wrote:
dewd11 wrote:
After living in Japan, everyday is a disappointment here in the US!


Words to live by.

Unless of course you need shoes above size 8. Then America is paradise.

As for trains, never did them as a family, did some longish trips my myself or with friends in China and Vietnam but my only Amtrak experience has been the NY to DC line.

Definitely would do a train before trying to drive that distance!


Took the Shinkansens while I was cityhopping over there, and I've never seen had a train ride so smooth before. They even had smoking cubicles which just blew my mind. Compare that with the old Soviet-era crap I was in in Hungary a while ago which literally broke in half.
   
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Adrift within the vortex of my imagination.

 Mad Doc Grotsnik wrote:
Ahhh. Luggage space.

In my yoof, a mere 20 years ago, our bikes would go in the Guard’s Van. As would we. It was great, we could smoke in there.

Now? Now?

No guard van. At all. Done away with. And so the selfish illegitimates that board the train, which runs on a single line (scotching the theory of privatisation) leave their bloody stupid folding bikes where the rest of us have to stand - and then get all Karen on you when you shift two or three to protect yourself from broken ankles with “how daaaaaaaaare you touch my pathetic little Clown Bike!

Well, good sir. You left it as a trip hazard, and I care far more about the next person boarding the train than I care about your selfish arsed and over priced property. Get rekt.


Definitely some 'commuting while British' going on here.

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Calculating Commissar




Frostgrave

 Mad Doc Grotsnik wrote:

In my yoof, a mere 20 years ago, our bikes would go in the Guard’s Van. As would we. It was great, we could smoke in there.


Loads of the newer trains up here now have bike carriages with space for 3-12 bikes (depending on the train). No guards or smoking, but at least proper space for them now to avoid bikes being dumped in everyones way.
   
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If you count the red line from Strathmore to Vernon, and the line to Chinatown, all in DC, I guess that collectively.

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Yes, on the one hand it is a very long trip, not every child is able to endure two days on the train. But on the other - it's a great opportunity to see the scenery and half the country, and such an opportunity arises not every day. If I were you, I`d choose this option. Of course you know your child better, cause if you seriously consider this way of travel, I can assume that for you it`s feasible distance. I can also recommend a convenient service train schedule online. Whenever I travel, I book dates and tickets here.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/12/17 09:23:52


 
   
 
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