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Vacations by Rail

  • My family is thinking about taking a "rail and sail" vacation, with guided tours, during the summer of 2007.  The organization sponsoring the tour is Vacations by Rail, but their website does not offer any contact info other than a free telephone number to place orders.

    Dopes anyone know anything about this organization?  How long in business and where?  Reliable?  Financially sound?  Tours worth the money?

    Specific to the tour we plan to take in August - are the hotels and restaurants OK?  Refund - cancellation policy OK?  Partial refund if steam engines not running?  Any info would be appreciated!!

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  • What is your tour?  You did not supply enough info for anyone to respond to that part.

    Personally I dislike any business that does not provide full contact info as it makes it almost impossible to find out anything about them.  Their web site looks nice but is rather skimpy on the company details.

    Try e-mailing them to get more info, then you could contact BBB or government travel regulators.  Also try contacting one of their host railways, like Rocky Mountain, and see what kind of reputation they have with them.
    Keep on Trucking, By Train! Where I Live: BC Hobbies: Model Railroading (HO): CP in the 70's in BC and logging in BC
  • Thanks for the tips.  The vacation we are planning to take is the "New England Rails and Sails" trip, a 9 day excursion in August.  If anyone has previously taken this trip, please let us know what you thought about it.

    I will try to contact some of the local railroads to see what they know about this operator.

  • Try posting this in Classic toy trains also. A lot of people there travel quite a bit for train related stuff.


    underworldBig Smile [:D]Big Smile [:D]Big Smile [:D]Big Smile [:D]Big Smile [:D]

    currently on Tour with Sleeper Cell Sleeper Cell is @ Checkers in Bowling Green Ohio 12/31/2009 come on out to the party!!! we will be shooting more video for MTVs The Making of a Metal Band
  • Hello PRR1950,

    I just came across this post so let me first give you some information on Vacations By Rail.

    About Vacations by Rail

    Vacations By Rail is the trusted authority on rail vacations.  Vacations By Rail offers the largest selection of independent rail vacations, escorted rail tours, luxury rail journeys and custom train vacations to destinations in North America, Europe and beyond, as well as a comprehensive selection of European Rail Passes and European City to City train tickets.

    Vacations by Rail provides its customers with expert, independent advice when planning rail vacations.  Our goal is to bridge the gap between the allure of rail travel and the knowledge required to plan and enjoy a rail vacation. We strive to provide customers with frank, candid information based on prior customer feedback, in-depth product knowledge and first hand rail travel experience.  Our Rail Specialists act as advisors and educators assisting customers with researching, planning and booking rail vacations best suited for the individual travelers.

    Vacations by Rail was founded by travel industry professionals with a combined 25 years in the specialty of booking train travel and rail vacations. Vacations by Rail quickly became a leader and trusted authority on rail vacations because of its in-depth knowledge of rail travel and first-class customer service.

    Contact Information

    Hours of Operation

    Monday - Friday

    9:00am to 6:00pm Central Time

    Phone Numbers (Toll-Free)

    USA & Canada:  1-877-929-7245

    United Kingdom: 0-800-051-8939

    Australia:  1-800-153-463

    New Zealand: 0-800-450-681

    Vacations By Has been in business for three years and is reliable as well as financially sound.  I believe the tours are worth the money.  I have included some customer testimonials below but feel free to contact us for additional testimonials.

    Customer Testimonials:

    I would recommend Vacations by Rail to anyone planning a train tour or rail vacation.  The Rocky Mountaineer was a trip of a life time; everyone should take a rail trip.  The train's Gold Leaf service and dome car were spectacular; we saw so much wildlife, including bear.  Vacations by Rail did an excellent job putting it all together.

    Thomas - Oregon


    We just returned today from our Trains Across Colorado trip. I just wanted you to know how much we enjoyed this trip. I can highly recommend it.

    Thanks for arranging everything for us.

    Mary - California


    Thank you for assisting us.  We had a great tour!


    Mike & Linda - California


    Just a quick thank you for coordinating our trip!  We had an absolute blast...we've been referring folks to you as we share our experiences. Take care and thanks again!

    Andrew - Illinois


    In regards to your specific questions regarding the New England Rails and Sails Tour, here are some answers.

    Q: Are the hotels and restaurants OK?
    A: The hotels are tourist class hotels.  Holiday Inn's, DoubleTree Hotel, Four Points by Sheraton , etc.

    Q: What is the refund/dancellation policy?
    A: All payments will be refunded when cancellations are more than 45 days prior to departure.  If you purchase the optional Travelers Protection Plan (TPP), you will be refunded all payments, less the premium amount of TPP.

    Should you choose not to purchase the Travelers Protection Plan, the following per person cancellation charges will be assessed for all tours and optional excursion costs:

    • 46 days or more: Fully refundable
    • 45 to 31 days prior: 20% of tour cost
    • 30 to 15 days prior: 30% of tour cost
    • 14 to 1 day prior: 40% of tour cost
    • Day 1 of departure or early departure from tour: 100% of tour cost
    • No refund on unused portions of the tour

    Q: Is a partial refund given is a steam engine is not running?
    A: Yes

    I hope I have answered all of your questions.  Sorry for the lengthy response.  If you still have questions, feel free to call us at 877.929.7245.

    Best regards,