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Sleeper Pricing?

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iPat09

Train Attendant
Joined
Feb 5, 2013
Messages
58
Location
Jackson, MS
We have started looking at taking a trip on board Amtrak for our honeymoon post covid. I started looking at prices today for sleepers and was shocked to see how expensive they are. Is this normal, paying $2,000+? I haven't checked prices since my last trip about 5 years ago, but I don't remember it being that much. Is this a side effect from covid or was it this expensive pre pandemic? Obviously, once we get serious about making reservations, we will try to make them as far in advance as possible. Once that time comes, I will be back with more questions about which directions to take and what time of year is best, etc. Thanks in advance!
 

Sidney

Service Attendant
Joined
Jul 12, 2020
Messages
127
Depends. Are you looking at bedrooms instead of roomettes? Also when do you plan on going?
 

iPat09

Train Attendant
Joined
Feb 5, 2013
Messages
58
Location
Jackson, MS
We would prefer bedroom, but if it saves a lot, a roomette would be fine. We are pretty open about going whenever. It would be post pandemic when things (hopefully) get back to a daily service. We definitely want to go during a dead period during the year, whenever that may be.
 

tricia

Conductor
Joined
Aug 23, 2011
Messages
1,165
Location
Spring Creek, NC
We would prefer bedroom, but if it saves a lot, a roomette would be fine. We are pretty open about going whenever. It would be post pandemic when things (hopefully) get back to a daily service. We definitely want to go during a dead period during the year, whenever that may be.
Roomette definitely saves a lot. Sometimes you can get two roomettes (ideally across the hall from each other) for less than the cost of one bedroom.
 

Amtrakfflyer

Lead Service Attendant
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Messages
481
Sleepers now range from barely affordable (low bucket) to *** are they thinking (high bucket) with zero amenities, taking it a step farther the current meals are more of an insult then an amenity.

My advice wait til things pan out to even consider it. Amtraks focus will be changing with the new administration, it won’t happen overnight. Right now with the current management/Covid/lack of amenities your trip could be memorable for all the wrong reasons. Sure, I’m all up for a train trip anytime but right now Amtrak isn’t worthy of a honeymoon. Go to Mexico or Europe and get some bang for your buck for $2000 plus.
 

me_little_me

Conductor
Joined
Jul 16, 2010
Messages
3,471
Roomette definitely saves a lot. Sometimes you can get two roomettes (ideally across the hall from each other) for less than the cost of one bedroom.
Sometimes? We haven't used a regular bedroom in over 3 years because in EVERY CASE and on EVERY overnight train (for multi-train trips), 2 roomettes were cheaper than 1 bedroom.
 

Manny T

OBS Chief
Joined
Jun 7, 2015
Messages
508
Location
Chicago IL
I note your last trip was 5 years ago. By comparison, those were the good old days. If you haven't been keeping track in the interim, you may not be aware of the downward spiral. If you browse the forums here over the last few years, you can read about it. Covid just accelerated an already downward trend. There is some long-planned up-grading going on -- refurbished sleepers, a new train hall in NYC -- but much else lags. And service is always inconsistent.

Like others, I just want you to know this, so you can make an informed decision. Your "dream" honeymoon on Amtrak might just be a dream. 2K can buy a lot, but not on Amtrak (at least, not reliably so imho.)
 

Bob Dylan

Conductor
Joined
May 31, 2009
Messages
21,221
Location
Austin Texas
I note your last trip was 5 years ago. By comparison, those were the good old days. If you haven't been keeping track in the interim, you may not be aware of the downward spiral. If you browse the forums here over the last few years, you can read about it. Covid just accelerated an already downward trend. There is some long-planned up-grading going on -- refurbished sleepers, a new train hall in NYC -- but much else lags. And service is always inconsistent.

Like others, I just want you to know this, so you can make an informed decision. Your "dream" honeymoon on Amtrak might just be a dream. 2K can buy a lot, but not on Amtrak (at least, not reliably so imho.)
I'd consider going on the Canadian if you're wanting your honeymoon to be on a LD Train.( hopefully the Border will be Open and VIA is back to running between Toronto and Vancouver)
 
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Sidney

Service Attendant
Joined
Jul 12, 2020
Messages
127
I took the Canadian ten years ago from Toronto to Vancouver with two berths. I remember the food was spectacular with different menus for all three meals all three days. A complete 180 from Amtrak. Are the meals still that good?
 

Sidney

Service Attendant
Joined
Jul 12, 2020
Messages
127
Sometimes? We haven't used a regular bedroom in over 3 years because in EVERY CASE and on EVERY overnight train (for multi-train trips), 2 roomettes were cheaper than 1 bedroom.
Bedrooms are way overpriced. Of course you are getting more room and a private toilet and shower but the food is the same as a roomette. The extras are not worth the inflated price. The only time I ever used a bedroom was on The City of New Orleans a year ago when it was only $50 more than a roomette
 

niemi24s

Conductor
Joined
Feb 11, 2015
Messages
2,418
Is this normal, paying $2,000+?
Yes, provided you understand Amtraks pricing system. Have prices gone up? Uh, yes they have. For a simple comparison, here the the Roomette and Bedroom fares for two adults for the full route of the Empire Builder to Seattle - now and five years ago.

• Jan 2021: Roomettes $772 to $1319; Bedrooms $1140 to $2460
• Jan 2016: Roomettes $611 to $1107; Bedrooms $ 918 to $2260

The ranges for each of these fares represents what's known as the high and low bucket fares, bucket being foamer gobbledegook for each of the five different levels of fares for each sleeper accommodation. FWIW, charts with the fare buckets for all the LD trains can be seen here: Long Distance Train Coach & Sleeper Fares (Buckets)

What this all means is you may have paid a low bucket Bedroom fare of $918 five years ago and the fare could now be $2460 on your chosen day of travel. Your flabbergastment is understandable! Even for travel when the fare bucket levels remained unchanged a ticket one day may have been $918 and for travel the next day it may have been $2260.

Nifty, huh?
 

MARC Rider

Conductor
Joined
Apr 5, 2011
Messages
2,426
Location
Baltimore. MD
You might want to wait until it's definitely post-Covid, and the trains are running daily again. Having more supply available might just lower prices. I'm not even thinking about taking day trips (which I did earlier in the fall and summer) until the Covid case rate starts seriously falling. Wait and see, the prices might get better, and it's even possible that the food will get better.
 

iPat09

Train Attendant
Joined
Feb 5, 2013
Messages
58
Location
Jackson, MS
Thanks for all the feedback. It's nothing more than an idea right now. I have multiple trips in my past (including a 7,000 mile circle throughout the west) but she hasn't done anything more than a day trip from Jackson to New Orleans. Theoretically, we would take CoNo from Jackson to Chicago, then CZ to Emeryville, CS to Seattle, EB back to Chicago before coming back to Jackson. We have decided we definitely will not do unless daily service comes back AND flex meals are dropped. I've done a lot of traveling in roomettes, so I am fine with that, but was hoping to get a bedroom this time. Had no idea it was that much more.

Really, it's very preliminary right now. Maybe even closer to wishful thinking and daydreaming than actual planning at this point.

I have so many fond memories of taking Amtrak throughout my childhood and as a young adult. I hate seeing things going in this direction. I really hope it can be turned around.
 

20th Century Rider

Conductor
Joined
Jan 26, 2020
Messages
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Location
Oregon Coast
The most compelling thing for many regarding the bedroom is the sole use of bathroom and shower... although very small; and a bit more room for sleeping for an extra person. That said, even before covid, cleanliness of Amtrak facilities was an issue. I remember several years ago traveling cross country in December. I left healthy but when I got to Boston I was sick with the flu. Of course that can be caught anywhere... but exposure to germs in restrooms is definitely something to consider.

If the car has a good attendant that would certainly make a difference. But health wise, my preference would be for a bedroom... that is... if I could afford it.

Yes, pricing for food is definitely part of that sky high fare... and meals being served now consist of small portions of processed junk food with high sodium, fat, and chemical additives. [The only 'healthy thing' about those flex meals is the small portion... so you get less of that bad stuff in your system.]

Lol!

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OBS

Conductor
AU Supporter
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Nov 9, 2011
Messages
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Location
Long Island, NY
Thanks for all the feedback. It's nothing more than an idea right now. I have multiple trips in my past (including a 7,000 mile circle throughout the west) but she hasn't done anything more than a day trip from Jackson to New Orleans. Theoretically, we would take CoNo from Jackson to Chicago, then CZ to Emeryville, CS to Seattle, EB back to Chicago before coming back to Jackson. We have decided we definitely will not do unless daily service comes back AND flex meals are dropped. I've done a lot of traveling in roomettes, so I am fine with that, but was hoping to get a bedroom this time. Had no idea it was that much more.

Really, it's very preliminary right now. Maybe even closer to wishful thinking and daydreaming than actual planning at this point.

I have so many fond memories of taking Amtrak throughout my childhood and as a young adult. I hate seeing things going in this direction. I really hope it can be turned around.
You can certainly switch it up, with roomettes for portions and bedrooms for portions....
 

caravanman

Conductor
Joined
Mar 22, 2004
Messages
3,870
Location
Nottingham, England.
Things with Amtrak are problematic at the moment. My impression is that folk are more inclined to spend out on sleeper accommodations to have their own space, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, which probably drives up prices somewhat. Food service is very basic too, reduced even before Covid-19...
I often used to visit America around January/February, or in September/October and found those months to be cheaper for Amtrak train travel.
 

Devil's Advocate

Sarcastic Misanthrope
Joined
May 24, 2010
Messages
11,935
Location
Texas
Go to Mexico or Europe and get some bang for your buck for $2000 plus.
Europe is currently closed to most Americans. Mexico doesn't mind but it's not nearly the bargain it once was. Last time I visited they were charging US prices and serving fake alcohol. I failed to see the benefit at that point.

Sometimes? We haven't used a regular bedroom in over 3 years because in EVERY CASE and on EVERY overnight train (for multi-train trips), 2 roomettes were cheaper than 1 bedroom.
I've booked multiple trips where a single Roomette cost more than a (Deluxe) Bedroom or Family Bedroom. I have no idea why Amtrak would ever do that but they did.

I'd consider going on the Canadian if you're wanting your honeymoon to be on a LD Train.( hopefully the Border will be Open and VIA is back to running between Toronto and Vancouver)
Just be ready to give an answer other than taking a train if one of Canada's finest starts getting snippy about your visit.
 
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Sidney

Service Attendant
Joined
Jul 12, 2020
Messages
127
Years ago I took the Maple Leaf into Toronto for the sole purpose of riding to Montreal and heading back on the Adirondack. One night in Toronto one night in Montreal. The customs agent asked my purpose of travel and I said to ride the train. He seemed perplexed and suspicious. He pulled up my bio on my workplace web site and it said how much I love train travel. He wished me a good trip and let me go.
 

jiml

Conductor
Joined
Feb 27, 2019
Messages
2,259
Location
Somewhere in Southern Ontario
Years ago I took the Maple Leaf into Toronto for the sole purpose of riding to Montreal and heading back on the Adirondack. One night in Toronto one night in Montreal. The customs agent asked my purpose of travel and I said to ride the train. He seemed perplexed and suspicious. He pulled up my bio on my workplace web site and it said how much I love train travel. He wished me a good trip and let me go.
Try doing it in the other direction!
 
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