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"Why Train Tickets Cost So Much In America"

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"Why Train Tickets Cost So Much In America"
Posted by Victrola1 on Monday, November 14, 2022 5:37 PM

CNBC did a report on the cost of riding Amtrak. Taking the plane is often cheaper. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qr6NHVddYow&ab_channel=CNBC

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Posted by Convicted One on Tuesday, November 15, 2022 12:57 PM

Gee, if the government is willing to subsidize airplanes, and trains. and ports (oh my!)...then they should be willing to pay me to stay home and out of everybody's way...

That's the mentality I see in all these guilt peddling activists claiming that other modes (besides their "pet") are receiving an unfair advantage.

If one wants to experience the ambience of transport by passenger rail, then there is no better place to do it than on a train.

When one has a priority for their destination, then there most likely are better options.

 

Then, there is that whole "amortization of costs" thing with all the dubious trimmings.  charging the Miami station for snow removal simply because a passenger might end up in Minneapolis. We've covered that before, but it's still relevant.

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Posted by Ulrich on Wednesday, November 30, 2022 3:49 PM

In Europe train travel is more "mainstream" and much more affordable. I recently returned from a trip to Italy with my wife... we took the train from Rome to Naples & Pompeii and back.. and then Rome to Florence and on to Venice. Trains are frequent, fast, and on time..The fast trains often exceed 300km/hour.. but one doesn't feel it as they glide along their own dedicated right of way.. 

We in North America should look at how the Europeans do it: there's some "build it and they will come" aspect to it. No need to reinvent the wheel.. only I suppose a need to put our egos aside to accept that others have perhaps already figured it out for us. 

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Posted by 54light15 on Wednesday, November 30, 2022 4:37 PM

Ulrich, I could not agree more. Toronto took over 2 years to sort out the Presto transit pass. I thought, why don't they go to London and copy the Oyster system? it's already sorted out. Just do that. But, no. 

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Posted by charlie hebdo on Wednesday, November 30, 2022 8:08 PM

Ulrich and 54Light: You are both right but many on this continent and on here always claim the differences between our situation and Europe are too large. The myth of exceptionalism prevails and we are left with almost no passenger services outside of the NEC and (?).

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Thursday, December 1, 2022 9:53 AM

charlie hebdo

Ulrich and 54Light: You are both right but many on this continent and on here always claim the differences between our situation and Europe are too large. The myth of exceptionalism prevails and we are left with almost no passenger services outside of the NEC and (?).

 
Exceptionalism is not that much of an issue as much as the greater distances involved and a cultural bias in favor of the automobile.
The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul
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Posted by Ulrich on Thursday, December 1, 2022 4:05 PM

CSSHEGEWISCH

 

 
charlie hebdo

Ulrich and 54Light: You are both right but many on this continent and on here always claim the differences between our situation and Europe are too large. The myth of exceptionalism prevails and we are left with almost no passenger services outside of the NEC and (?).

 

 

 
Exceptionalism is not that much of an issue as much as the greater distances involved and a cultural bias in favor of the automobile.
 

 

The vast majority of train trips in North America are on the order of 500 miles or less just as they are in Europe. In Canada in particular, VIA trips between Toronto and Montreal (350 miles) account for roughly 90% of intercity passenger miles. 

I can't argue with the cultural bias in favor of the automobile here; however, that bias is being eroded by ever higher gas and vehicle prices.. reasonably priced train service in densely travelled corridors would bring people to rail  here just as it has in Europe. 

It can be done.. even over mountainous terrain.. just look at what Spain and Italy have done.. both of their high speed networks are challenged with grades and the need for lots of tunnels and bridges. Montreal-Toronto by way of contrast is far flatter, with the odd bridge needed here and there and no need at all  for any long mountain bores.  Same would be true for Calgary-Edmonton out west.. 

In Europe, as well, intelligent regulations that are coming on stream now  prohibit short hop flights where rail is a viable alternative.. We should do that here too.. and soon.. if we hope to meet our climate targets. 

Build it.. make it reliable and convenient..price it right.. and people will flock to rail. The Charger trains are a good start; however, their full potential can't be realized without a dedicated right of way built specifically for this purpose.  

 

 

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Posted by charlie hebdo on Thursday, December 1, 2022 5:10 PM

Exactly!  In the distant past, when passenger train services (meaning decent snd multiple trains between points) were available, they were patronized, even in the early days of the interstates well into the 60s. Now there are few point to points where rail is an option as transportation.  But it could happen, expecially with overcrowded airways and highways.

 

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