Can We Have A Better Cardinal Schedule, Please?

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20th Century Rider

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The present schedules are:

50: CHI 545P, IND 1159P, CIN 327A, WAS 644P, NYP 958P
51: NYP 645A, WAS 1100A, CIN 141A, IND 600A, CHI 1000A

50 gets to IND, CIN and NYP at horrible times. 51 leaves NYP and IND very early and in the middle of the night for CIN.

I think these schedules are a vestige of trying to use these two trains as commuter trains between Indianapolis and Chicago. The schedules east of Indianapolis are not so good.

If we forget about the vestige of past schedules, here are adjusted schedules:

50: CHI 945A, IND 359P, CIN 727P, WAS 1044A, NYP 158P
51: NYP 115P, WAS 530P, CIN 811A, IND 1230P, CHI 430P

The running times are the same and the commission hours in NYP are avoided. Now the trains visit all the major cities at reasonable hours. People would want to visit Cincinnati again, by train.

Why does Amtrak cling to the present day schedules of these trains, as horrible as they are?

jb
That scheduling looks much better than the old... but fearfully, Amtrak is running on rails belonging to the freight companies... so last priority gets whatever schedule fits.

BTW!!! The Lakeshore has a lousy schedule going east... leaving at 9pm and getting to the Big Apple at rush hour time or later as it runs late quite often. Would like to see that train leave in mid afternoon getting to NYP about the same time the next day.
 

jiml

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Probably a city pair that hadn't been entered into ARROW. All valid connections have to be manually entered into ARROW. It isn't algorithmic, or even train 2 and 20 connect. Each city pair, individually. With the Cardinal schedule change they probably all had to be redone. Perhaps the one Cal was using hadn't been entered yet.
In Post #19, someone suggested connecting through New Orleans (from the Sunset to the Crescent) and was told that Arrow would require separate reservations for that, which does not appear to be the case under any circumstances.
 
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zephyr17

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In Post #19, someone suggested connecting through New Orleans (from the Sunset to the Crescent) and was told that Arrow would require separate reservations for that, which does not appear to be the case under any circumstances.
Yeah, that was what I was responding to, the fact that you successfully got a HOU-ATL response. Cal may have used a city pair that hadn't been entered into ARROW, since they have to be entered into ARROW indvidually.
 

jiml

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Yeah, that was what I was responding to, the fact that you successfully got a HOU-ATL response. Cal may have used a city pair that hadn't been entered into ARROW, since they have to be entered into ARROW indvidually.
I wasn't disagreeing with you, rather acknowledging none of it had anything to do with the Cardinal - which of course is the subject of this thread. ;)
 

me_little_me

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Probably a city pair that hadn't been entered into ARROW. All valid connections have to be manually entered into ARROW. It isn't algorithmic, or even train 2 and 20 connect. Each city pair, individually. With the Cardinal schedule change they probably all had to be redone. Perhaps the one Cal was using hadn't been entered yet.
And the 20th Century is continuing even though we are 20+% into the 21st.

If it's just a jobs program for those unable to handle more technical work, just make the data entry people executives. It's obvious to me that it doesn't take high intelligence for that job either.
 

Burns651

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P.S. The inability to check even the LD schedules on Amtrak.com is slowly turning into the last straw with Amtrak for me.
Just type "amtrak cardinal schedule" into your favorite search engine and the first or second hit will be the timetable, on Amtrak's website. Same for all the other trains too. It wasn't like that for a while but Amtrak finally came to its senses. I bet Richard Anderson loved the misdirected fog caused by the timetable removals.Screenshot_20210523-062355~2.png
 

me_little_me

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Just type "amtrak cardinal schedule" into your favorite search engine and the first or second hit will be the timetable, on Amtrak's website. Same for all the other trains too. It wasn't like that for a while but Amtrak finally came to its senses. I bet Richard Anderson loved the misdirected fog caused by the timetable removals.View attachment 22571
It hasn't stopped. With new 7-day trips and changed times such as with the Crescent, these new timetables should have been out already and marked with their effective date. That's what Amtrak used to do.

You'll never convince me it isn't deliberate.
 

20th Century Rider

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I think you meant 2%...unless I've done a Rip VanWinkel and missed 200 years or so. ;)
We are 21% into the 21st Century. The Amtrak Management board has indicated that complimentary steak dinners will be served to all passengers for the duration of 2021 with a very focused 21-21 vision! [Just kidding about the steaks!] And last Thursday was 05-21-21 at 21:21:21 according to the article below:

 

fdaley

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The present schedules are:

50: CHI 545P, IND 1159P, CIN 327A, WAS 644P, NYP 958P
51: NYP 645A, WAS 1100A, CIN 141A, IND 600A, CHI 1000A

50 gets to IND, CIN and NYP at horrible times. 51 leaves NYP and IND very early and in the middle of the night for CIN.

I think these schedules are a vestige of trying to use these two trains as commuter trains between Indianapolis and Chicago. The schedules east of Indianapolis are not so good.

If we forget about the vestige of past schedules, here are adjusted schedules:

50: CHI 945A, IND 359P, CIN 727P, WAS 1044A, NYP 158P
51: NYP 115P, WAS 530P, CIN 811A, IND 1230P, CHI 430P

The running times are the same and the commission hours in NYP are avoided. Now the trains visit all the major cities at reasonable hours. People would want to visit Cincinnati again, by train.

Why does Amtrak cling to the present day schedules of these trains, as horrible as they are?

jb
I remember that the Cardinal ran on a schedule rather like what you propose (evening westbound from WAS, morning eastbound into WAS) until the mid-1980s. Then Amtrak flipped it to a daylight schedule across West Virginia, initially as an experiment, and they claimed ridership went way up. The current schedule has the advantages of covering the most scenic parts in daylight and making all connections to/from the west at Chicago. But the times at Cincinnati are horrible. And to me the Cardinal has always been very difficult to use, because the times at NYP are so early/late that one can't make connections to/from upstate NY or New England. At least the restored sleeper on 66/67 makes the latter somewhat more palatable.
 

Trogdor

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We are 21% into the 21st Century. The Amtrak Management board has indicated that complimentary steak dinners will be served to all passengers for the duration of 2021 with a very focused 21-21 vision! [Just kidding about the steaks!] And last Thursday was 05-21-21 at 21:21:21 according to the article below:

There's something distinctly wrong with that article. Namely, the 21st day of the year was in January. We've already had 140+ days this year.
 

me_little_me

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Heck, I'd be happy with daily Cardinal service.
It is sad that we ask for so little.

  • Bad food until further notice
  • Higher and higher prices.
  • Bad hours at some important stations with alternative train travel
  • No daily service
  • Schedules stretched so the train appears to be on time.
  • Reduction in the number of baggage stations

And yet we are happy if ONE of the things get fixed. And the chances of that are not only small but there is a good likelihood, things will get worse:

  • Bad food forever.
  • No improvements in additional train service. The infrastructure bill proposal has already been cut once and the guarantee of multi-year spending beyond the next election (or even earlier) is not something to bet on.
  • Based on the Crescent, we're likely to see more LD schules growing longer.
  • Those baggage stations will likely not come back and more may disappear.
  • Amtrak has likely figured out that cutting back on room availability means they can squeeze more out of customers and not have to pay for the crew to provide service.

Oh, well. I was looking for the Cardinal to be my primary transport to Chicago to go west to visit family.
 
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20th Century Rider

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Heck, I'd be happy with daily Cardinal service.
And they'd fill it with folks eager for a great train ride and at better convenience... it they increased it to every day!
28be308ebd379716f29b7e97d83bd678.jpg
 

jruff001

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It hasn't stopped. With new 7-day trips and changed times such as with the Crescent, these new timetables should have been out already and marked with their effective date. That's what Amtrak used to do.

You'll never convince me it isn't deliberate.
Many airlines have stopped publishing their system timetables. Are they scheming to make themselves go out of business too?
 

Cal

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It is sad that we ask for so little.

  • Bad food until further notice
  • Higher and higher prices.
  • Bad hours at some important stations with alternative train travel
  • No daily service
  • Schedules stretched so the train appears to be on time.
  • Reduction in the number of baggage stations

And yet we are happy if ONE of the things get fixed. And the chances of that are not only small but there is a good likelihood, things will get worse:

  • Bad food forever.
  • No improvements in additional train service. The infrastructure bill proposal has already been cut once and the guarantee of multi-year spending beyond the next election (or even earlier) is not something to bet on.
  • Based on the Crescent, we're likely to see more LD schules growing longer.
  • Those baggage stations will likely not come back and more may disappear.
  • Amtrak has likely figured out that cutting back on room availability means they can squeeze more out of customers and not have to pay for the crew to provide service.

Oh, well. I was looking for the Cardinal to be my primary transport to Chicago to go west to visit family.
Ditto
 

PaTrainFan

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Many airlines have stopped publishing their system timetables. Are they scheming to make themselves go out of business too?
Airline and rail schedules are two different animals. Almost all airline flights are only point to point and easy to search via computer, whereas rail has many intermediate stops which matter to a sizable number of riders. I don't view the ending paper schedules as part of the grand conspiracy, but it is still an easy task to keep up with .pdf schedules and make them available on Amtrak's website for passengers to download and print, or save to their devices.
 

jis

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Airline and rail schedules are two different animals. Almost all airline flights are only point to point and easy to search via computer, whereas rail has many intermediate stops which matter to a sizable number of riders. I don't view the ending paper schedules as part of the grand conspiracy, but it is still an easy task to keep up with .pdf schedules and make them available on Amtrak's website for passengers to download and print, or save to their devices.
They are available in principle and are slowly getting populated as we speak and are accessible in two steps. First go to


and select the route, and then on the page that comes up click on "Schedule".

They are not quite upto date yet, and a few pages that are in the process of getting updated are missing. Hopefully they will get fixed behind schedule like most Amtrak LD trains, and can't even blame the host railroad about this one. 🤷‍♂️
 

jebr

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They are available in principle and are slowly getting populated as we speak and are accessible in two steps. First go to


and select the route, and then on the page that comes up click on "Schedule".

They are not quite upto date yet, and a few pages that are in the process of getting updated are missing. Hopefully they will get fixed behind schedule like most Amtrak LD trains, and can't even blame the host railroad about this one. 🤷‍♂️
It still baffles me, however, that Amtrak has a "Schedules" tab on the top banner of basically every page, yet clicking that gives no way of pulling up the PDF schedules (at least that I can figure out.) It's available if you dig (and the process might make sense without the presence of a "Schedules" tab in the top banner) but it's...well, basically SOP for Amtrak to put the information in an area that's not obvious while having another option that seems obvious but doesn't lead to the information that you'd expect there (and exists, just on a different web page.)
 

Anderson

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Click on "Destinations".
Click on "See All Routes".
Click on "View Details" underneath the Cardinal.
Click on "Schedule".

Seems pretty intuitive to me.

View attachment 22531
No, "intuitive" would be that if I click on "Schedules", I can at least get a link to a list of timetables below the "Put in two cities to see what your options are" entry areas. It doesn't help that there's no easy way to flip between trains (e.g. if someone has misremembered what train is on a given routing/covers a given intermediate destination).
 

daybeers

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The new schedule option is nothing like a timetable and I don’t know why people are trying to say it’s fine. It only is able to show one train’s times and stops for one day at a time. A timetable is meant to show all trains on a particular route for all days at once. Completely different.
 

neroden

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Many airlines have stopped publishing their system timetables. Are they scheming to make themselves go out of business too?
The airlines think that there's no alternative and the cattle will take what they're given.

But the local AIRPORTS publish the schedules for the planes leaving that airport, because it's crucial marketing for a smaller airport. If they don't, people will just drive to the larger airport and never realize the small airport has suitable flights. (Google Flights's "search nearby airports" and "see all destinations from this airport" options help.)
 
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