April trip on The Canadian

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scrollmaster

Service Attendant
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Feb 20, 2018
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Wife and I have been wanting to take this trip from Toronto to Vancouver with few a days stopover at Jasper.
•Tentatively planning late March early April departure from Louisiana.Total trip about 4 weeks with stops so Amtrak portion needs to be booked by May 31 for cancellation privileges.
• Amtrak portion is Longview, TX to Chicago to Buffalo to Niagra Falls, ON to Toronto. Return will be Seattle to Los Angeles to San Antonio to Longview.
•From VIA schedule if we depart Toronto on a Sunday we arrive Jasper on Wednesday and depart Jasper Saturday and reach Vancouver on Sunday.
•From what I read I understand there could be serious delays so will plan arrival Toronto and departure Vancouver accordingly as we do with Amtrak.
•We have Marriott & Wyndham Rewards so any suggestions on hotels especially in Toronto, Jasper & Vancouver.
•Heard a lot about crowds at Toronto station. Would a Sunday departure be less crowded than Wednesday. Also I understand Prestige & Sleeper Plus get access to lounge area and early boarding.
 

Maglev

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Just FYI, the May 31 deadline is for reservation changes and cancellations. Changes and cancellations made after that date may incur a fee. Here's a thread on the topic, with a response from Amtrak in one of the posts:

 

scrollmaster

Service Attendant
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Just FYI, the May 31 deadline is for reservation changes and cancellations. Changes and cancellations made after that date may incur a fee. Here's a thread on the topic, with a response from Amtrak in one of the posts:

I received that as well. I called Guest Rewards and specifically asked about cancellation/modification subsequent to May 31 and response was as long as reservation made prior to May 31 cancellations/modification were allowed after that date.
 

scrollmaster

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Maglev, you know phone conversation one thing but I just sent an email asking about the details so awaiting a written reply. Not sure of their response time but hopefully not too long.
 

jiml

Conductor
Joined
Feb 27, 2019
Messages
1,154
Wife and I have been wanting to take this trip from Toronto to Vancouver with few a days stopover at Jasper.
•Tentatively planning late March early April departure from Louisiana.Total trip about 4 weeks with stops so Amtrak portion needs to be booked by May 31 for cancellation privileges.
• Amtrak portion is Longview, TX to Chicago to Buffalo to Niagra Falls, ON to Toronto. Return will be Seattle to Los Angeles to San Antonio to Longview.
•From VIA schedule if we depart Toronto on a Sunday we arrive Jasper on Wednesday and depart Jasper Saturday and reach Vancouver on Sunday.
•From what I read I understand there could be serious delays so will plan arrival Toronto and departure Vancouver accordingly as we do with Amtrak.
•We have Marriott & Wyndham Rewards so any suggestions on hotels especially in Toronto, Jasper & Vancouver.
•Heard a lot about crowds at Toronto station. Would a Sunday departure be less crowded than Wednesday. Also I understand Prestige & Sleeper Plus get access to lounge area and early boarding.
A couple of random thoughts regarding your Canadian hotels: There are a few Marriott options within a couple of blocks of Toronto Union Station, varying from high-end to Residence Inn. I personally like the Delta. It sort of depends on how long you're staying and your budget - whether points or cash. It's also a "business" area, so hotels may be a bit cheaper (again points or cash) on a Saturday night if you're considering that Sunday departure instead of Wednesday. In Vancouver, are you taking Amtrak south to Seattle? A hotel closer to Central Station might serve your needs better if that's the case. The JW Marriott, the Westin and the Delta are the closest in the Marriott portfolio. I'm not a Wyndham guy, but they'll certainly have some options. There are not a lot of chain options in Jasper and everything will be fairly expensive. It's a beautiful place though.
 

scrollmaster

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A couple of random thoughts regarding your Canadian hotels: There are a few Marriott options within a couple of blocks of Toronto Union Station, varying from high-end to Residence Inn. I personally like the Delta. It sort of depends on how long you're staying and your budget - whether points or cash. It's also a "business" area, so hotels may be a bit cheaper (again points or cash) on a Saturday night if you're considering that Sunday departure instead of Wednesday. In Vancouver, are you taking Amtrak south to Seattle? A hotel closer to Central Station might serve your needs better if that's the case. The JW Marriott, the Westin and the Delta are the closest in the Marriott portfolio. I'm not a Wyndham guy, but they'll certainly have some options. There are not a lot of chain options in Jasper and everything will be fairly expensive. It's a beautiful place though.
Appreciate the info. Got everything booked for April 11th departure on The Canadian in car 130. Will be splitting the trip and departing four nights at Edmonton before reboarding to Victoria and having a few days in there. I am thinking about taking the Victoria Clipper Ferry to Seattle, would be a new experience traveling by ferry. Ferry boats in Louisiana absolutely nothing like these.
Hotels choices usually by how long will be in the room. If only staying one or two nights will likely choose very close to the station and Wyndham usually suits ok for a place to sleep. Longer stays usually choose Marriott not only for the comfort but more likely to have services such as concierge, etc. There are Wyndham's I use for extended stays. I do like the LaQuinta near Chicago Union Station, the Wyndahm Philadelphia Historic District, and I really enjoy the New Yorker and the history it has and very close to Amtrak as well. Seattle we like the locally owned Mayflower Hotel.
Have Amtrak portion booked departing Longview TX on April 4th to Chicago on Texas Eagle, Lake Shore Limited to Buffalo and Maple Leaf to Niagra Falls ON. The Amtrak portion from Seattle to Los Angeles to San Antonio back to Longview still a few days before booking available.
 

jiml

Conductor
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Feb 27, 2019
Messages
1,154
Appreciate the info. Got everything booked for April 11th departure on The Canadian in car 130. Will be splitting the trip and departing four nights at Edmonton before reboarding to Victoria and having a few days in there. I am thinking about taking the Victoria Clipper Ferry to Seattle, would be a new experience traveling by ferry. Ferry boats in Louisiana absolutely nothing like these.
Hotels choices usually by how long will be in the room. If only staying one or two nights will likely choose very close to the station and Wyndham usually suits ok for a place to sleep. Longer stays usually choose Marriott not only for the comfort but more likely to have services such as concierge, etc. There are Wyndham's I use for extended stays. I do like the LaQuinta near Chicago Union Station, the Wyndahm Philadelphia Historic District, and I really enjoy the New Yorker and the history it has and very close to Amtrak as well. Seattle we like the locally owned Mayflower Hotel.
Have Amtrak portion booked departing Longview TX on April 4th to Chicago on Texas Eagle, Lake Shore Limited to Buffalo and Maple Leaf to Niagra Falls ON. The Amtrak portion from Seattle to Los Angeles to San Antonio back to Longview still a few days before booking available.
Sounds like an awesome trip. Hope everything is back to normal by then.
 

Bob Dylan

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May 31, 2009
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19,780
Appreciate the info. Got everything booked for April 11th departure on The Canadian in car 130. Will be splitting the trip and departing four nights at Edmonton before reboarding to Victoria and having a few days in there. I am thinking about taking the Victoria Clipper Ferry to Seattle, would be a new experience traveling by ferry. Ferry boats in Louisiana absolutely nothing like these.
Hotels choices usually by how long will be in the room. If only staying one or two nights will likely choose very close to the station and Wyndham usually suits ok for a place to sleep. Longer stays usually choose Marriott not only for the comfort but more likely to have services such as concierge, etc. There are Wyndham's I use for extended stays. I do like the LaQuinta near Chicago Union Station, the Wyndahm Philadelphia Historic District, and I really enjoy the New Yorker and the history it has and very close to Amtrak as well. Seattle we like the locally owned Mayflower Hotel.
Have Amtrak portion booked departing Longview TX on April 4th to Chicago on Texas Eagle, Lake Shore Limited to Buffalo and Maple Leaf to Niagra Falls ON. The Amtrak portion from Seattle to Los Angeles to San Antonio back to Longview still a few days before booking available.
Nice trip!
Hopefully these Trains will still be running on the days you've booked and also for your return since the cuts in service that are coming to the LD Trains may be draconian!!!???
 

scrollmaster

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Nice trip!
Hopefully these Trains will still be running on the days you've booked and also for your return since the cuts in service that are coming to the LD Trains may be draconian!!!???
I hope so as well because LD trains suit how we travel long distances. Amtrak bedrooms a bit draconian but adequately serve the purpose. Meals on western trains still edible and the communal aspect of the dining car still intact on those trains which is one of the most delightful parts of train travel for my wife and I. Seldom have we sat at a meal and not enjoyed the company at the table. One of my favorites was the lady about mid 70's when sat at the table with us immediately announced she was here to eat and not socialize or talk with people. Seemed odd thing to me but told her we understood and wife and I continued conversation with each other planning what to do in Quebec and Nova Scotia because we had never been in Canada before. Our table guest as it turned out travels a lot and wasn't a few minutes she offered information about our destination and by meals end showing photos and stories of her and husband, now deceased, and their travels abroad. She was heading to New York to meet with a long time friend and they were cruising to Europe again.
 

joelkfla

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Oct 16, 2018
Messages
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Be sure to join the VIA rewards program. The trip from Toronto to Vancouver gives enough points to get coupons for substantial discounts the following year, in case you want to do another Canadian train trip.

I got a surprise free upgrade on the Canadien from roomette to bedroom, and when I asked the train staff why, they said my enrollment in the program was probably a factor, even though I had never traveled on VIA before. And this was even on a greatly reduced fare purchased during VIA's Thanksgiving sale.
 

scrollmaster

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I did for wife and I and also paid with Amtrak card so should get 2pts per dollar spent towards Amtrak travel. Definitely coming back to Canada again. Would love to spend some more time in Nova Scotia especially.
 

daybeers

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Joined
Jan 6, 2016
Messages
697
Just FYI, the May 31 deadline is for reservation changes and cancellations. Changes and cancellations made after that date may incur a fee. Here's a thread on the topic, with a response from Amtrak in one of the posts:

I received that as well. I called Guest Rewards and specifically asked about cancellation/modification subsequent to May 31 and response was as long as reservation made prior to May 31 cancellations/modification were allowed after that date.
This has been extended to August 31: Coronavirus Update | Amtrak
 
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