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Sleeping in coach?

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MStrain

Service Attendant
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Feb 13, 2008
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JAN
So how many folks have slept overnight in coach on a long distancer? My hand is raised :rolleyes:

I was in high school and on a Boy Scout trip to Minnesota from Jackson, Mississippi so might have just been young and full of vigor....but I don't remember it being that bad. If I recall, it gets pretty dark in coach at night and the seats do recline a little better than airlines. I sleep on my back, so that's not a problem.

Just wanted to see how many people do sleep that way over the sleeping car. I have only had a sleeping car in Europe and that's a different deal altogether.

I plan on taking the City of New Orleans to Chicago this summer and was just going to coach it up there. Leaves Jackson, MS at 5:45PM and arrives in Chicago at 9AM. I only sleep about 6 hours anyhow.........will I die???? :lol:

MStrain
 

the_traveler

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Whatever siding I'm sitting on!
Me too! :)

Being cheap :D , when I travel alone (which is often :( ) I usually travel coach. I don't mind it, and find it quite comfortable. Although you don't have a lie flat bed and you don't have the privacy of your own room, I don't mind it at all. Since on western trains, I spend most of the day in the Sightseer Lounge, I'm usually only in my seat at night, and I don't think the 3+ time increase in cost is worth it for just 1 pax! (Just my opinion.)
 

MStrain

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Feb 13, 2008
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JAN
I just know that if I ever want my wife to travel on train with me, we'd have to get a roomette....possibly even a bedroom!!! YIKES$$$$$$$$$$$ Just kidding.

She is still addicted to the "get there quick" idea of the airlines. She is starting to see the adventure is in getting there by rail. One day....one day! :lol:
 

Chatter163

OBS Chief
Joined
Aug 26, 2002
Messages
595
I did travel overnight in coach when I was younger and it did not seem so bad. However, as I got even a little older, my desires definitely changed, and not only regarding cach vs. sleeper. It is the nature of the beast.

Fifteen months ago, when my father passed away I went to see him just before. I had a roomette booked, but our sleeping car had been pulled at the last minute due to electrical difficulties, and I had to sleep in coach. It was not completely awful, but let us say that I did not rest nearly as well. Part of it was the fact that we had been told to expect that every seat would be used, so I was trying hard not to spill over into the seat next to me, lest someone had to move me over duting the night. As it turns out, the seat did not fill until the morning, anyway. It was not an experience that I am eager to repeat.
 

daveyb99

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Mar 10, 2005
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Grapevine, TX
All the more reason I check interim points on the trip for possible upgrades.

I recently posted a fare of $109 on #422 DRT-MHL - that is 24 hours, three meals, and a bed. Not bad.

I have even seen a $45 fare MHL-SAS #21/#421, which is most of the day, three meals (if on time into MHL).

Deals are out there for the taking. Just be creative, and do not settle for 'making due'
 

George Harris

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Apr 6, 2006
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now in California
Did it many times in my early 20's, Memphis to Knoxville, a few times later, Washington to Jacksonville or Atlanta, and a few times in my 50's in Taiwan, one of them sitting on the floor for a midnight to 6:00 am ride. Under the same circumstances I would do it again, but would probably need help getting up.
 

gswager

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Aug 22, 2002
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Portales, NM
I've slept in coach several times. It's ok for just one night. Due to my height, 6'0", it's hard to sleep with feet slam against the front seat. Some coach cars has longer legroom while others are too short for me.

I spoke to a guy from California who is a "lunatic" Cleveland Indians fan. He loves to sleep in the sightseer car, but he'll have to wait until midnight when the passengers in the sightseer are heading back to the coach and has to get up at approx. 6 am to make room for early risers. Also, he mentioned that he snores loudly.
 

Green Maned Lion

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I'm taking my first overnight coach trip in a bit more than a week. I'll let y'all know how that goes.
 

PerRock

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Sep 16, 2006
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Ann Arbor, MI
I've done many an overnight in coach, and enjoy it. If you have a good crew and location on the train you can sleep in the sightseer (assuming you are going to the end of the line) in fact tonight i leave for a half overnight in coach. I'll board @ midnight and ride until i can ride no more on that train.

peter
 

OlympianHiawatha

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Feb 7, 2008
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Norman, OK
Provided you can get 2 seats together and the trip isn't much longer than 24 hours, coach is fine. I just finished a run on the Texas Eagle, and one fellow I talked with went to the lower level, which wasn't too crowded and sprawled out on the floor area ahead of the seats. I too spend most my time in the Sighseer when that is in consist, and have always over the years been surprised how few pax will wander into the lounge, even if they are on a longer haul. On this last trip, there were several times when I was the only one there. I guess they fear they have to spend money in there.
 
N

NS VIA FAN

Guest
I hadn't traveled overnight in coach since I could afford a sleeper. But a couple of years ago I had to go from Ottawa to Bathurst, New Brunswick and it was the start of Spring Break. All sleeper space on VIA’s OCEAN was sold out so my only option was a coach seat on one of the new Renaissance trains. At least I could have a seat to myself as seating is a single on one side of the aisle and double seats on the other. The train was jammed packed with mostly university students and I thought to myself “this is going to be a long night”. But what a great group of kids and I certainly wasn’t excluded from any of the conversations (or a card game) going on around me. Things did quiet down around 11pm and I got an good sleep on this new very smooth riding equipment. The diner opened at 6:30am and we arrived in Bathurst OT at 9am. I returned by sleeper but certainly won’t rule out riding overnight coach again. It brought back memories of all the fun times riding coach back in my college days!
 
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frj1983

OBS Chief
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Jun 11, 2006
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Chicagoland USA
I can't count the number of times I overnighted in coach...but that was when I was younger. Now, one bad back later...I always purchase sleeper space.
 

sentinal

Train Attendant
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May 6, 2006
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Chicagoland
i took coach on two trips second was the worst had some drunk across the asile who kept hitting on my wife i was about ready to personal throw him off the train when he finally got the hint. plus the leg cramp i got for the whole trip didnt add to my dispostion any.

i have gotten a sleeper since
 

saxman

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New Orleans
I for sure try to get a window so I can lean up against the window. Buy a really good eye mask and have a hoodie sweatshirt and I sleep like a baby in coach. I use to wake up so much during the night, I'd be so tired in the morning and missing all the good scenery in the morning. So I put my hood up cover my eyes, and sometimes I'll use my noise canceling headset too. I also like to bunch up my coat and use that to put my head on against the window. Hope that works!
 

jackal

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My hand is raised, too! However, I must be getting old or something...I didn't sleep as well last time as I remember doing as a young kid. I should have brought my neck pillow and a pair of eye shades--I might have done better... :(
 

caravanman

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Nottingham, England.
I am English, age 55, and over 6' tall. I started my Amtrak adventures riding in roomettes, but for several trips recently, I have ridden in coach. I like coach much more, as I meet a great cross section of "ordinary folk". The fact that coach is very good value is a plus, of course. The main worry is whether I get the whole 2 person seat to myself to sleep, it is a lot more of a struggle to sleep well if I have to share.

I find the air con tends to be too cold too, so a cheap blanket and a wool hat help me to keep cosy. The last trip was Sacramento to New York, 3 nights sleeping in coach. Great fun, great characters, but I did spend a little while longer than usual in the hotel shower once I reached New York!

The seats do recline well, there are foot rests, and quite a good amount of knee room too. Lights are dimmed, but it is light enough to see your way to the bathroom, etc, so an eye mask can help if you like it real dark to sleep well.

Ed B)
 
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RailFanLNK

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Lincoln, Nebraska (LNK)
I'm 44 years old with a body that is beat to crud from hard labor and abuse during that time. I prefer a roomette but always sleep in coach on the way back from Glenwood Springs CO. It's not a perfect night of sleeping but it can be done. Now if your wife is going, I think a roomette is worth every penny. There's things you just can't do in coach that you can do in a roomette such as sleeping horizonally. So I can sleep in coach if need be, just don't jump up and down at the chance of getting to do it.
 

frj1983

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Personally, I'd find that kind of drunken... person amusing, so long as it was only verbal.
It's not so funny Green Maned Lion,

When the Drunk lays hands on you and gets physical. This once happened to me on the CZ...this "person" was cut off by the Lounge Staffer and was begging people to buy him drinks. I said "no" and he suddenly grabbed me by the front of my shirt and began screaming at me. I managed to break his hold on me quickly and shove him back, but it seemed to make everyone gasp in the lounge. The Staffer immediately closed the Lounge, called the Conducter, and the next thing you know, my "new friend" was getting off in the middle of nowhere accompanied by the Police.

While I wasn't hurt, I was startled, and can't even begin to imagine what would have happened if it had been a woman. While this was my very first train trip on Amtrak, it did not put me off train traveling and 25 years later I'm still training with more to come in April. But Sleeper, now, Yes!
 

the_traveler

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Whatever siding I'm sitting on!
but always sleep in coach on the way back from Glenwood Springs CO. It's not a perfect night of sleeping but it can be done.
A few years ago, I flew into SLC in the evening and had planned to spend 1 day there and take a train to RNO the next night at midnight. But I found 2 "weekly specials" for 5 & 6 (remember those days ?) that allowed me to go from SLC to GJT and back on the next train.

Best thing was the cost of the train to and from GJT was less than the cost of the hotel in SLC! B) And it gave me a full (daylight 10 AM - 5 PM) day in GJT! And it allowed me to get some sleep on the train before I would have had to board in SLC at midnight! And I didn't have to check out of the hotel at noon and wait around until midnight!!

And of course, I got to ride a train! :lol:

I may not have slept as well in coach as in the hotel, but to me it was well worth it! Coach sleeping was comfortable enough.
 

meatpuff

Train Attendant
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Jan 25, 2008
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Champaign, IL
Now if your wife is going, I think a roomette is worth every penny. There's things you just can't do in coach that you can do in a roomette such as sleeping horizonally. So I can sleep in coach if need be, just don't jump up and down at the chance of getting to do it.
The way your post displayed on my screen was

"Now if your wife is going, I think a roomette is worth every penny. There's things you just can't do in coach that you can do in a roomette "

[carriage return]

"such as sleeping horizonally."

For an instant I thought you were talking about something different! :eek:

;)
 

the_traveler

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Whatever siding I'm sitting on!
Now if your wife is going, I think a roomette is worth every penny. There's things you just can't do in coach that you can do in a roomette such as sleeping horizonally. So I can sleep in coach if need be, just don't jump up and down at the chance of getting to do it.
The way your post displayed on my screen was

"Now if your wife is going, I think a roomette is worth every penny. There's things you just can't do in coach that you can do in a roomette "

[carriage return]

"such as sleeping horizonally."

For an instant I thought you were talking about something different! :eek:

;)
Same here! ;)

It just shows where our thoughts are! :lol:
 

Green Maned Lion

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NJ
It's not so funny Green Maned Lion,
When the Drunk lays hands on you and gets physical. This once happened to me on the CZ...this "person" was cut off by the Lounge Staffer and was begging people to buy him drinks. I said "no" and he suddenly grabbed me by the front of my shirt and began screaming at me. I managed to break his hold on me quickly and shove him back, but it seemed to make everyone gasp in the lounge. The Staffer immediately closed the Lounge, called the Conducter, and the next thing you know, my "new friend" was getting off in the middle of nowhere accompanied by the Police.

While I wasn't hurt, I was startled, and can't even begin to imagine what would have happened if it had been a woman. While this was my very first train trip on Amtrak, it did not put me off train traveling and 25 years later I'm still training with more to come in April. But Sleeper, now, Yes!
I was being specific about the physical part for a reason. If such a persons hand even hovered near my fiance, he'd be getting intimately acquainted with the knuckles of my left hand.
 
Joined
Feb 25, 2008
Messages
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I did the 3 night crosscountry CZ-Capitol in 1983 when I was 21. I loved every minute of that trip and didn't mind sleeping in coach.

These days I take 15 hour flights to Asia where I am confined to a tiny seat with minimal reclining angle. An Amtrak LD coach seat seems like a dream!
 

Bill Haithcoat

Conductor
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Aug 23, 2002
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atlanta, georgia
It boiled down to this for me. Were mother and daddy still paying for it, or was I? Mother and daddy were qutie frugal.

When I was high school or early college and my sister lived variously in Memphis, Dallas and San Fancsico, there a number of trips from Chattanooga, all in coach. I did ok. (pre-Amtrak, these memories)

But once I started making my own money, that quickly changed to sleeper.

Oh yes, I am older now, too, almost forgot that!!

My first sleeper ride was in the 60's sometime, from Chattanooga to Chicago on an overnight streamliner called The Georgian.. Didn't sleep a wink. Entirely too wired. Loved getting to explore my roomette.
 
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