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Old August 8th, 2007, 09:34 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vancouverite View Post
$795 from Vancouver to Toronto One Way in the cheapest class!

Round trip in sleeper class (it is a three-day trip after all) is $4150!

Via is a nice idea but it is absurdly expensive if you are coming from the West.
Rail does not make sense for distances greater than 700 km for HIGH speed.

Even less so for normal speed.

This is not exactly new information.
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Old August 13th, 2007, 02:04 AM   #22
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while the train is nice (I've traveled a few times in SW Ontario..London to Toronto, London to Chatham/Windsor, London to the Niagara Region)

it is quite overpriced in some spots. However, the further ahead you book, the cheaper the price goes down, same goes for weekends.

Only along the Windsor-Quebec City Corridor is there service that is not spread too far apart. Look at a system map. Vancouver - Edmonton, and beyond.

I would love to travel across the country from Toronto to Vancouver by rail, but the prices are ridiculous.

$1900+ for a single sleeper..ONE way, youth rate (18-25 years) from Toronto to Vancouver.
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Old August 13th, 2007, 02:26 AM   #23
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Are these prices out of whack compared to a similar length journey in Europe? I would imagine so. If someone could shed some light on the high prices, it would be appreciated. Low population density in much of Canada only explains so much.
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Old August 13th, 2007, 07:48 PM   #24
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Also no competition.
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Old August 15th, 2007, 12:34 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vancouverite View Post
$795 from Vancouver to Toronto One Way in the cheapest class!

Round trip in sleeper class (it is a three-day trip after all) is $4150!

Via is a nice idea but it is absurdly expensive if you are coming from the West.


Anyway, May we see some pictures of trains and stations?

Last edited by SmarterChild; August 15th, 2007 at 12:44 AM.
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Old August 16th, 2007, 07:45 AM   #26
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Also no competition.
That would make sense if VIA were making millions, but they still lose money. I'd like to see some stations, trains, those famous Canadian chateau style railway hotels, track, and scenery pics. Someone must have some?
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Old October 11th, 2007, 10:30 PM   #27
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CANADA | Railways

Compared to what you see in Europe and elsewhere, Canada has a pretty small passenger railway system.



However, things are expected to improve, with an announcement by the Federal Government to inject more funding into the Rail.

Though the only place where it likely could be used for the daily commute is in Southern Ontario along the Windsor-Quebec City Corridor, frequencies of trains are still quite limited.

Quote:
Via on track to get cash infusion
Last Updated: Thursday, October 11, 2007 | 2:21 PM ET
CBC News

Ottawa is expected to announce Thursday that Via Rail will receive several hundred million dollars in new funding.

The announcement will be made at Union Station in downtown Toronto by federal Transport Minister Lawrence Cannon and Finance Minister Jim Flaherty. Via chairman Donald Wright will also be there.

The money is expected to be earmarked for capital acquisitions, refurbishing locomotives and passenger cars, increased rail capacity and day-to-day operations, the Canadian Press reported.

Via Rail receives about $170 million in annual operating subsidies from the government.

The company has been struggling with aging stock and capacity problems since the government of former prime minister Paul Martin reversed a $700 million commitment announced by the Chrétien government in 2003.

But Via has managed to increase ridership to about 4.1 million passengers last year from about 3.8 million.
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Old October 12th, 2007, 01:51 AM   #28
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Great service in Western Canada! You can always catch the bus to Calgary!

VIA Rail is a disgrace. I'm ashamed to admit that Canada even has passenger rail.
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Old October 12th, 2007, 11:19 AM   #29
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A good start at reducing costs would probably be to get rid of locomotives except for long-haul services which have long consists. A proper distinction needs to be made between luxury long-haul routes which cross the country and shorter routes which aim to connect cities and compete with coaches and airlines.

The Adelaide-Melbourne route struggles for this reason because it's marketed as a luxury service but no one wants that or the costs associated with a locomotive hauling a bunch of very heavy carriages when you can have much more cost-effective DMUs, which have been very successful on regional services.

If we can pull it off here with the lack of funding, surely you Canadians can too. But upgrading the regional network was politically unpopular with the majority city dwelling population even though it was totally essential. Refurbishing carriages won't help in the long term.
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Old October 12th, 2007, 08:52 PM   #30
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^ Melbourne-Adelaide might be just the right distance for non-stop overnight hotel-train service such as exists between many pairs of European cities. Leave 7pm and arrive refreshed 7am the next day.

On such services a little luxury's not a bad thing; the bed isn't free and neither is the meal, and you can sell a little booze in the club car.




VIA Rail.

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Old December 29th, 2007, 02:35 PM   #31
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I wish the Halifax-Montreal route still cut through Maine via Saint John. I used to love passing though Saint John and seeing those massive Irving refineries. Those trains are the best way to travel. They're ridiculously spacious and cozy. I remember having a whole section to myself that you could almost turn into your own little apartment. There was always tonnes of room to sprawl out and sometimes there were no other passengers for 20 feet or more.

Not good economics for VIA Rail, but you really felt like a king on a private train journey just for you. The observation car with the glass ceiling is always the best part. When you get restless, you can just go wandering from one end to the other with hardly anyone around.

Last edited by isaidso; December 29th, 2007 at 02:45 PM.
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Old December 31st, 2007, 01:56 AM   #32
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Is there good service on the "Corridor"? Are there any improvments like HSR planned?
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Old January 2nd, 2008, 07:12 AM   #33
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Quote:
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Is there good service on the "Corridor"? Are there any improvments like HSR planned?
Top speed is 160 km/h around Belleville, and the line isn't even grade separated because it's still owned by CN. There are 30 trains per weekday on the corridor, which is pathetic by any standard. As for your second question, the Chretien government in 2003 planned a "Via Fast" project to eliminate grade crossings/unnecessary curves/upgrade rails/etc, but it somehow disappeared when Martin took over.
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Old January 3rd, 2008, 12:59 PM   #34
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In addition to what was mentioned above, the trains are chronically delayed. All around, it's shockingly antiquated and unreliable. It's appeal lies in the charm and relaxation as offered on the Halifax-Montreal leg. It's desirable if you want to escape from the world for 20 hours, sight see, and enjoy peace and quiet in very cozy and spacious old train cars.

From Montreal to Toronto, the train is much faster, but busier and cramped.
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Old January 5th, 2008, 02:42 PM   #35
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I wish the Halifax-Montreal route still cut through Maine via Saint John. I used to love passing though Saint John and seeing those massive Irving refineries.
Back in those days that was the only passenger service in Maine. Amtrak goes there from Boston now, but there was a time when you could get on at Greenville Junction and go to Montreal if you wanted to. Although it was in the middle of the night when Via went through there.
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Old January 6th, 2008, 09:41 AM   #36
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That's too bad. I remember stopping in the middle of the night in Maine. Some would get off, some would board. It was a frustration for Canadian passengers heading to Montreal from Atlantic Canada though. We'd have to wait forever while customs officers processed everyone.

I actually got escorted off the train because I didn't have my Canadian passport with me. I was travelling from Halifax to Montreal and at one point it looked like they weren't going to let me back in my own country. I was in shock. I had clearly boarded in Canada and had no interest in disembarking in Maine. I wanted to continue to Montreal, but they were going to keep me in the USA. What a nightmare!
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Old January 6th, 2008, 09:57 AM   #37
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that's just the american borders after 9/11. During the past weeks the idea of a rapid rail link between Quebec City and Montreal has appeared, I think i would be a great thing for VIA rail because the actual services that they're offering are terrible.
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Old January 6th, 2008, 09:58 AM   #38
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It happened in 1995 before all of that. Anyway, where did you hear about talk of rapid rail between Montreal and Quebec City? That would be fantastic, and perhaps the impetus needed to get high speed rail off the drawing board in this country. Bombardier technology?
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Old January 6th, 2008, 09:00 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by exclusiv View Post
that's just the american borders after 9/11. During the past weeks the idea of a rapid rail link between Quebec City and Montreal has appeared, I think i would be a great thing for VIA rail because the actual services that they're offering are terrible.
But would it be a VIA Rail service? The impression I get is that these new initiatives are largely provincially driven, not federal.
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Old January 7th, 2008, 07:52 AM   #40
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Being that the stretch between Windsor/Detroit and Quebec City is one of the busiest corridors in North America, why HSR (and true HSR, not the half-assed plan that Chretien proposed) hasn't been built yet is beyond me. Bombardier built trains for the US and Asia, why would the government not want to build it in Canada is beyond me. And they need big help in the commuter rail business in this country, particularly in Toronto.
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