Lower priced Sleeper for single travelers

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crescent-zephyr

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2. “Cabins for One,” as Via and other railroads offer them, and I would pay for one.

Cabin for 1 on VIA is a “heritage roomette” - same size room. I prefer the design of the Amtrak roomette but VIA does have much more comfortable bedding. (Did the new Amtrak bedding ever appear? I think it did?).

But a roomette on via rails Canadian is $1826 USA for Toronto to Vancouver. A roomette on Amtrak from Washington DC to Seattle is $1654.
 

TheCrescent

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Cabin for 1 on VIA is a “heritage roomette” - same size room. I prefer the design of the Amtrak roomette but VIA does have much more comfortable bedding. (Did the new Amtrak bedding ever appear? I think it did?).

But a roomette on via rails Canadian is $1826 USA for Toronto to Vancouver. A roomette on Amtrak from Washington DC to Seattle is $1654.

I checked the Via website and a cabin for 1 was $2,647 but a cabin for 2 was $3,971 (both Canadian). That’s my point: a private room at a lower price for one person than for two would be appealing. The Canadian’s fares are generally higher than Amtrak ones for the routes you list.

I did not know that true cabin for 1 is the size quoted above.
 

caravanman

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Strange how the topic has veered so far away from private slumber coaches on Amtrak trains, why no posts deleted or moved?
What train business would offer to convey a competitors passengers at the risk of losing their own paying customers to that competitor?
 

cirdan

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Strange how the topic has veered so far away from private slumber coaches on Amtrak trains, why no posts deleted or moved?
What train business would offer to convey a competitors passengers at the risk of losing their own paying customers to that competitor?

Maybe it depends where the passengers are coming from.

It is often alleged that Amtrak loses money on every coach passenger and that it is the sleeper passengers that bring in the profits.

If that is the case, and if the private slumbercoaches attract away primarily coach passengers while themselves generating more positive cashflow than they remove, there might be an argument. Especially if slumbercoach passengers may still be spending money in the cafeteria etc.

There are a lot of ifs and assumptions there though. It would take somebody with a deeper understanding of Amtrak accounting to give a definite answer.

Remember that a few years ago Amtrak agreed to convey Iowa Pacific's sleeper cars on the CONL, despite these being in direct competition to their own sleeper cars. That was finally discontinued, but not AFAIK because of anything Amtrak did.
 

Just-Thinking-51

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Remember that a few years ago Amtrak agreed to convey Iowa Pacific's sleeper cars on the CONL, despite these being in direct competition to their own sleeper cars. That was finally discontinued, but not AFAIK because of anything Amtrak did.

Not a subject matter expert but do recall a few failure to hook the Iowa Pacific equipment to the CONL, that resulted in next day departures. That going to hurt the ridership, just a bit. There was the whole let’s change the PV rates to eliminate the multi-car, multi-trip discount that happened during Iowa Pacific time.

It does not take much negative action by Amtrak to kill something that is depend on Amtrak to operate.
 
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crescent-zephyr

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I checked the Via website and a cabin for 1 was $2,647 but a cabin for 2 was $3,971 (both Canadian). That’s my point: a private room at a lower price for one person than for two would be appealing.

A cabin for 1 is a heritage roomette, and a cabin for 2 is a heritage bedroom.

It’s the same thing as Amtrak’s roomette and bedroom. Amtrak just designed the roomette space so that it can accommodate a second person.
 

TheCrescent

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A cabin for 1 is a heritage roomette, and a cabin for 2 is a heritage bedroom.

It’s the same thing as Amtrak’s roomette and bedroom. Amtrak just designed the roomette space so that it can accommodate a second person.

But again:

My point is that offering a lower-priced private room for a solo traveler is appealing.

It’s that simple.

The Night Riviera train between London and Penzance has single cabins and double ones. The single cabins don’t include lounge access, and the upcharge is smaller than the total up charge for a double cabin.

That’s what I suggest.
 
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crescent-zephyr

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My point is that offering a lower-priced private room for a solo traveler is appealing.

Ok, sorry. I think I was just focused in on the VIA rail example. VIA rails roomette / bedroom is the same as Amtrak’s to me and at similar price points.

A slumbercoach, with tiny rooms and no H room had a maximum of 40 beds with duplex rooms (rooms for 2). I still think if the demand is there an all roomette sleeper would make as much sense as designing a new type of car.
 

TheCrescent

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Ok, sorry. I think I was just focused in on the VIA rail example. VIA rails roomette / bedroom is the same as Amtrak’s to me and at similar price points.

A slumbercoach, with tiny rooms and no H room had a maximum of 40 beds with duplex rooms (rooms for 2). I still think if the demand is there an all roomette sleeper would make as much sense as designing a new type of car.
No apology needed- and thanks for the very valuable and helpful information you’ve shared.
 

jis

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A slumbercoach, with tiny rooms and no H room had a maximum of 40 beds with duplex rooms (rooms for 2). I still think if the demand is there an all roomette sleeper would make as much sense as designing a new type of car.
Duplex Rooms are not room for two. See the diagrams I have posted on the previous page, and the discussion pointed to in the same post.

Duplex rooms are vertically staggered single rooms of a slightly more luxurious proportions than Slumbercoach singles.
 

Mailliw

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According to their website solo passengers still get lounge access (& breakfast); it appears single compartments are just double compartments with the upper berth folded away.

There is one circumstance that I could see a return to open sections; if they could be subject to the ADA requirements for coaches instead of sleeping cars. They'd have a passenger capacity of 38; 36 in 18 standard sections and 2 (including companion) in an accessible section adjacent to the restroom. Upper berths would have windows and additional outlets. Of course if an ensuite accessible bedroom is still required just go with roomettes instead.
 

crescent-zephyr

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Duplex Rooms are not room for two. See the diagrams I have posted on the previous page, and the discussion pointed to in the same post.

Duplex rooms are vertically staggered single rooms of a slightly more luxurious proportions than Slumbercoach singles.

Oh yeah, I mixed up the terms. So they were just called single and double rooms?
 

jis

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There is one circumstance that I could see a return to open sections; if they could be subject to the ADA requirements for coaches instead of sleeping cars. They'd have a passenger capacity of 38; 36 in 18 standard sections and 2 (including companion) in an accessible section adjacent to the restroom. Upper berths would have windows and additional outlets. Of course if an ensuite accessible bedroom is still required just go with roomettes instead.
I have traveled in a Meter Gauge car that fits this description (without the ADA stuff of course) including window for upper berth on a KTMB (Malaysian Railway) train between Butterworth in Malaysia and Hat Yai in Thailand. So such things do already exist. It was a Hyundai self generating (diesel) coach, in the Kuala Lumpur - Hat Yai International Express. This was at least 20 years back.
Oh yeah, I mixed up the terms. So they were just called single and double rooms?
As the diagram spells out, they were called Duplex Rooms. Honestly I did not come up with the seemingly odd name. Pullman did!
 

TheCrescent

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According to their website solo passengers still get lounge access (& breakfast); it appears single compartments are just double compartments with the upper berth folded away.

There is one circumstance that I could see a return to open sections; if they could be subject to the ADA requirements for coaches instead of sleeping cars. They'd have a passenger capacity of 38; 36 in 18 standard sections and 2 (including companion) in an accessible section adjacent to the restroom. Upper berths would have windows and additional outlets. Of course if an ensuite accessible bedroom is still required just go with roomettes instead.
I may be wrong then. When I dummy-booked a ticket, it didn’t show lounge access for solo cabins but it for others but I may have just missed it.

The upcharge was £40 for a solo cabin but £60 (ie, £30 per person) total for a double. That’s what I like. On Amtrak, it seems as though the total upcharge for a roomette is the same whether one person is paying all of it or if two people are splitting it.
 

crescent-zephyr

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As the diagram spells out, they were called Duplex Rooms. Honestly I did not come up with the seemingly odd name. Pullman did!

Oh I see! So the duplex roomettes were staggered full size roomettes vs. the slumbercoach “solo and double” rooms.

Interesting!
 

jis

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Oh I see! So the duplex roomettes were staggered full size roomettes vs. the slumbercoach “solo and double” rooms.

Interesting!
Apparently so. I admit that I have forever been confused, and the best explanation I have found so far aligns with what you say.

The Slubmbercoach doubles were not vertically staggered like the Duplex. They were all at the standard floor level AFAICT. They were somewhat like the current Amtrak Roomettes AFAICT.
 
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jis

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This photo has been posted earlier in this thread:

SlumbercoachLochLong.jpg


It shows a Slumbercoach with 24 singles in duplex arrangement and 8 doubles (the four windows at the same level at the far end). It has a capacity of 40 (=24 + 8x2). Slumbercoaches came with several mixes of accommodation with several different capacities.
 

crescent-zephyr

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Those Via rooms seem ancient! But I’d be fine with a cabin for one. Thanks for posting.
At the same price (or more)as an Amtrak Roomette?

I'm wondering if they still operate those. As a railfan id love to ride in one (and a section) just to say I did it!
 
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I would think that a possible reason why Amtrak isn't providing budget sleepers might be the acquisition costs. Based on what I've read in this group about the number of working Sightseer Lounges needed to resume service on the Capitol and Texas Eagle (6 per train), they would need to have 36 single level budget sleepers for the 6 single level trains (Meteor, Star, LSL, Cardinal, Crescent, and 66/67), and they would need 42 new budget sleepers for the seven double-decker Superliner trains (CZ,SWC,TE,SL,CONO,CL,EB). We saw what a drama it was just to get 25 new sleeping cars from the Viewliner 2 order, imagine the pain involved in ordering almost 80 additional sleeping cars. As for costs, it's really hard to find web sources that tell you how much a new passenger railcar costs, but this page (Amtrak Cuts Deal with Siemens for ‘Venture’ Trainsets, Replacing Cascades Equipment) claims that WSDOT is paying about $150 million for 48 Siemens Venture cars for the Cascades service. That comes out to $3.1 million per car. I don't know whether sleeper cars are more expensive to build than coaches, but it would seem that outfitting all of Amtrak's overnight trains with budget sleepers would cost about $240 million. In order to decide whether this is a good allocation of capital, you would have to figure out whether the additional business generated would pay for the purchase price (not to mention the incremental operating costs) in a reasonable time frame. It's quite possible that, given the fact that the current sleepers sell pretty well, Amtrak management sees no need to incur this large upfront cost in order to provide that kind of service.
 

joelkfla

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At the same price (or more)as an Amtrak Roomette?

I'm wondering if they still operate those. As a railfan id love to ride in one (and a section) just to say I did it!
VIA has 3 types of sleepers: Chateaus, Manors, and Renaissance. The duplex roomettes are in the Chateaus. Their website says they run primarily on the Montréal-Gaspé and Winnipeg-Churchill routes, but I don't know whether the website is completely up to date.

The Canadian between Toronto & Vancouver primarily runs Manor sleepers, which are from the same period but have single-level roomettes. The website says Chateaus may be added for extra capacity in the spring & summer.

The Ocean between Montréal-Halifax runs Renaissance sleepers, which are newer cars from England.

VIA also has the Park cars that run on the end of the Canadian. They are sleeper-dome-observation lounge cars, providing high-priced Prestige sleeper service as well as an accessible room.
 

railiner

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Duplex Rooms are not room for two. See the diagrams I have posted on the previous page, and the discussion pointed to in the same post.

Duplex rooms are vertically staggered single rooms of a slightly more luxurious proportions than Slumbercoach singles.
IIRC the full line of sleeper designation's, they were: Single Slumbercoach rooms, in 'standard' 24-8 type Slumbercoaches, and Double Slumbercoach rooms. In the 16-10 type Slumbercoaches, the Singles's 1,2,3, and 4 were in the rooms designed for two, but only had one bunk. The rest of the singles were of the "duplex" design, staggered up or down alternately. All of the singles's regardless of design, were sold at the same rate.

"First Class" or Pullman accommodations, started with Upper Berth's, then Lower Berth's, than full Section's (Upper and Lower sold together), then Duplex Roomettes (simiar to Single duplex Slumbercoaches but slightly larger and more plush, then Roomettes, than Duplex Single Rooms (with beds cross-wise to the car, but staggered up or down, followed by Double Bedrooms, Compartments, Drawing Rooms, Master Rooms, Bedroom Suites (Two Double Bedrooms), or Double Bedroom/Compartment combinations.

The Slumbercoaches could be purchased with a coach fare, and the room charge. The "First Class" accommodations required a First Class fare, plus the room charge.

There were also other fare plans for "Tourist Sleepers", usually in older First Class equipment, sold at coach fare plus room charge, mainly by those roads that did not obtain any Slumbercoaches...
 
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