Amtrak

Category Archives for Amtrak.

Leaked Memo: New Fees Coming To Amtrak

Dec 28 2019

Amtrak doesn’t have enough passengers. On many of their routes trains ride mostly empty. They have a cost problem and they have a ridership problem. The government train operator is addressing the cost of meals, Amtrak has lost nine figures on food service, but doing surprisingly (or not so surprisingly) little to address labor costs.

However they seem to see their ridership problem as a lack of revenue problem and they’er looking to generate more money out of each passenger rather than boost the number of passengers.

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Two Commercial Airlines Have Crashed Within 24 Hours

i'm sad words picture
Mar 10 2019

A four month old Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737-8 MAX lost radar contact six minutes after departure at 8:44 a.m. local time. No survivors among the 149 passengers and 8 crew from flight ET302 from Addis Ababa to Nairobi have been found.

The one you may not have heard about is that a Laser Aereo Colombia Douglas DC-3 from San Jose del Guaviare to Villavicencio with 14 passengers on board declared an emergency at 10:40 a.m. local time on Saturday, and crashed into the ground bursting into flames.

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Amtrak Acela Train Separated in Maryland This Morning

amtrak train
Feb 06 2018

Amtrak’s train 2150 from Washington Union Station to New York Penn Station broke apart between the first (first class) and second (quiet) cars this morning and “sparks and smoke went everywhere.”

There have been four fatal Amtrak incident since December. Fortunately no one was walking between cars when this incident occurred today or we’d be looking at a fifth.

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The Final Word on Amtrak to Choice Points Transfers

Randy Petersen puts the smack down and gets the straight story on Amtrak transfers to Choice Hotels. I recently reported that Amtrak reduced the value of transfers to Choice Hotels with no notice and then removed the option altogether.From NotiFlyer[Members are] again be able to transfer points from Guest Rewards to their Choice Privileges account at a rate of 5,000 to 15,000 points, and transfers will be completed for members who were in the middle of a transfer when the closure occurred. According to Blakey, the exchange option will remain in effect through the end of 2007, at which time changes to the program will be instituted. As of Jan. 1, 2008, the Guest Rewards exchange program will only be available to elite members (Select and Select Plus) and members who hold an Amtrak co-branded…

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Amtrak Transfers to Choice Hotels Over

First Amtrak reduces the value of points transfers to Choice Hotels with no notice whatsoever. Now the option to transfer to Choice is gone entirely, a matter of days later. This just piles on the history of customer unfriendly business practices for this program (limiting the number of points transferred out of the program in a year with no notice, dropping their partnership with United with no notice). The Carlson folks run the program like a true clown operation.

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New Amtrak Guest Rewards Redemption Option

Just when I diss Amtrak Guest Rewards (and this doesn’t help with my trust of the program or with their customer service issues), they introduce a new redemption option — 5,000 Amtrak points convert to 25,000 Choice Privileges Points. The extreme value here is: 5,000 Amtrak points yield 25,000 Choice points which convert to 5,000 miles with Air Canada, Alaska, American, Continental, Delta, Mexicana, Northwest, United, and USAirways. Talk about flexibility! 10,000 Amtrak points yield 50,000 Choice points which convert to 20 Southwest Rapid Rewards credits, more than enough (16 required) for a free ticket. 50,000 Amtrak points yield 250,000 Choice points which convert to 100 Southwest Rapid Rewards credits, which earns you a companion pass and 6 roundtrip tickets (that can be used for you and your companion. Now, Amtrak still imposes a limit…

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Hall of Shame: Amtrak Guest Rewards

So you have to ride the train, and at least they give you points for that. But that’s more or less all you can say about Amtrak Guest Rewards. I used to like their 2500 point award, one-way in the Northeast Corridor for unreserved service. I’d keep some tickets on hand. Of course, Amtrak doesn’t even have unreserved service anymore. And they upped the point requirements with just hree weeks’ notice. And they both imposed maximum points transferred out of the program in a year and dropped United as a partner without any notice at all. These more or less made me not trust the Guest Rewards program. But their problems go even farther. Amtrak Guest Rewards has just implemented online award booking. In other words, they’ve entered the ’90s. But there’s a glitch. In…

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