Ideas for Amtrak to raise revenue

Amtrak Unlimited Discussion Forum

Help Support Amtrak Unlimited Discussion Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.
Amtrak must market better, make the service more attractive, and stress the comfort level. New proposed routes will also help. For instance Yellowstone the most popular National Park in the USA has no rail service anywhere close. Years back the park had its own train station. How does an ad that says "Take Amtrak to Yellowstone" sound? Would it not attract new business?
Not enough traffic at all but the most active stations. Even that tiny store at San Jose does not have enough traffic. Caltrain traffic as well as Amtrak.
I have no idea where Greensboro ranks in ridership across the entire network. It is third most active in the state and that makes sense as it is third in population. There has been a convenience store in a small space for over a decade and he does enough business to have stayed in business and I think he was wanting to hire someone the last time I was there. The city of Greensboro owns the station so I assume rent goes to the citym but it might go to Amtrak as the store is very much in the Amtrak part of the multimodal station. The waiting room that was used for minorities in the Jim Crow era is now used by NC DOT for license renewals that do not need a driver's test. I assume NC DOT is paying some rent there but it might be for free just to help Greensboro residents not to deal with so many lines. One thing I think Amtrak should look into is taking the old boot black room, which seems to be two rooms that could fit a few couches and other pieces of furniture and convert to a mini-Metro Lounge. It need not be stocked with all the items as Moynhin Hall has but pick up some water at Costco and a few small snacks and charge an extra $10. Just having a place to sit in a comfortable charge with plenty of outlets might be enough of a draw without more than free water. Restrooms are controlled with a coded lock that changes daily, do the same with the small lounge. Some local furniture companies might be willing to donate some furniture. I think this would at least be worth a trial run for about one year. And having a lounge might push a few folks to purchase business class, and that clearly is a money maker for what you get compared to the price. You could even let those few folks up to the platform just a minute earlier and give them dibs on coach seats if the lounge was open to anyone.

I don't think this would make a huge amount of money but I also don't see this as a big gamble that would cost tens of thousands of dollars to make a go of it and it turn into a money loser. The current Charlotte station does not have enough space and Raleigh has some empty space but it would need work as the space is unfinished for use by stores that may never come due to complaints from local business. Charlotte could make space specifically for a lounge in their future station.

I have no idea how station agents CBA is worded to allow them 5 minutes to restock the water and snacks between trains. I am sure something could be done.
Longer trains.
More seats, more compartments, more revenue.

Daily service. 7 days a week is required. Got to spread your fixed cost over as many trains as possible.

Since Apple is in talks to buy Disney, maybe we can just sell them Amtrak as a side hustle.
Daily service. 7 days a week is required. Got to spread your fixed cost over as many trains as possible.
They have daily service on most routes. What they really need is twice-daily service (and preferably more) on all routes, with the two trains being scheduled at least six hours apart. That would significantly open up options for connections and tourism as well as ensure that all stations have daytime service.
dunno about that i hear tons of atc communication still.
Not disputing any of the above comments, just noting the existence of DATIS (Digital ATIS) and PDC Pre departure clearance which helps reduce voice traffic at larger airports for general aviation. Large commercial operators are supposed to have some CPDLC controller pilot data link communications that I know exists but have no other knowledge of. Still lots of voice traffic to listen to though!
Being new to Amtrak, something I've ran into looking for random places we would like to go: because we're stuck with Cardinal at either Indy or Cincinnati, routes don't come up as easily or "don't exist" because of arrival time for a transfer. I've been able to cobble together some routes by selecting multi-city instead, but it's a pain. Why haven't they updated the site to simply give options with a notice that an overnight accommodation would be required instead?