Sold out rooms/ Insane high fare buckets

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jruff001

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Jan 23, 2020
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I'm curious about those who think that sleepers should be priced at a price point that most Americans are willing and able to pay--which presumably would vastly increase the number of people trying to book sleepers, while the number of actual sleepers available would not increase. Would there be a lottery to determine who the lucky winners would be? (And what would prevent arbitrage--people playing the Amtrak lottery so as to sell their 'lucky' tickets at a profit to those not so lucky in the lottery?)
EXACTLY!!!

How it would play out would be like getting a low-number boarding pass on Southwest Airlines if you are not A-List or didn't pay extra for Early Bird Check-In: those who are near a computer the minute a train opens for booking on amtrak.com would snag all the rooms. The rest of us would be out of luck. And Amtrak would leave a lot of money on the table.
 

Qapla

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It would seem like making the tickets "non-transferable" would curb people from "snagging all the rooms" if they could not sell them to anyone ... unless the person they sell them to has their exact same name, phone number and birthdate
 

zephyr17

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My understanding is they've stopped tour companies from grabbing large blocks of rooms early on without having to pay for them up front, which was distorting the yield management. Then when it came time to pay (60 days out? 90? I don't recall), they'd release the unsold ones. They can still grab them, but now they either have pay for them upfront, or have to pay for them much earlier or release them. Seaboard92 may have more and better info on that.

That was the only example of an entity "snagging all the rooms" that I knew of.

Oh, and tickets are already non-transferable. They just don't check IDs much to enforce it.
 

flitcraft

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It would seem like making the tickets "non-transferable" would curb people from "snagging all the rooms" if they could not sell them to anyone ... unless the person they sell them to has their exact same name, phone number and birthdate
Well, that would require that they collect such information--which based on my experience, they don't. In fact, I have never even been asked to show proof of age to justify my senior discount--let only phone number and date of birth to verify my identity. Now that you mention it, though, I should be offended that the conductors haven't asked me for proof that I qualify as a senior. ;)
 

AmtrakBlue

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Now that you mention it, though, I should be offended that the conductors haven't asked me for proof that I qualify as a senior. ;)
Yeah. When I first started asking for senior meals/discounts I wondered if I should feel insulted if they didn’t question me. But, hey, I was saving money, so insult me all you want. 😛
 

dlagrua

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I don't agree with that. Congress wants to see what looks like Amtrak "making money" (or at least losing less) and operating like a business. THAT is what will keep Amtrak funding going, not the perception that it is a bottomless money pit that can never hope to make even an operating profit.
Can you name any form of government transportation that is making money? I thought public transportation was there to serve the American public. No form of government makes money so why should Amtrak be the exception?
 

uncleboots

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I paid 300 Dollars for a Roomete for the Westbound Chief Chicago to LA on 10/2. I was fortunate enough to transfer Chioce Hotel Points to Amtrak Rewards which knocked the price down to $300.
 

Barb Stout

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I paid 300 Dollars for a Roomete for the Westbound Chief Chicago to LA on 10/2. I was fortunate enough to transfer Chioce Hotel Points to Amtrak Rewards which knocked the price down to $300.
Hmm. Is this something new or a special deal? A few years ago I transferred some Hilton points to AGR, but didn't get any big (or small) discount on my ticket prices for doing so.
 

uncleboots

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Hmm. Is this something new or a special deal? A few years ago I transferred some Hilton points to AGR, but didn't get any big (or small) discount on my ticket prices for doing so.
Yeah! Choice Hotels have a program where you can transfer points to Amtrak Rewards. It’s worth checking into.
 

AmtrakBlue

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Yeah! Choice Hotels have a program where you can transfer points to Amtrak Rewards. It’s worth checking into.
She was asking about your “knocked the price down”. How did using points knock the price down? Did you split the trip up so you could use points on one leg and $$$ on the other leg?
 

Tom Booth

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Why have bedroom costs gone astronomically up for the summer and fall 2021? Cross country, NYP-SFC, that used to be from $1250 to $2200, now is priced $2900-$3900. I've taken this trip about 8 times in the past 7 years and the jump from roomette to bedroom is often double. And the roomette cost now equals or exceeds the old bedroom price. Is all this just supply and demand? Is the relative inaccessibility to Canada and limited service of ViaRail contributing to this? Or is it a new Amtrak LD policy to discourage ridership? Thanks for any insight.


MODERATOR NOTE: 2 threads on similar topics (high prices on SWC roomettes and high prices on bedrooms) have been merged and the thread title edited.
 
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dlagrua

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We've seen prices for sleepers even higher than mentioned by Tom like $6500 Bedroom coast to coast R/T. Amtrak may come to realize that they are not the only transportation service choice available or will they?
We will gladly continue to support Amtrak at 2X the price of First Class Air but not a penny more. I believe that is generous enough of us. Due to the exorbitant sleeper prices this year will be flying first class air on our August trip. As for the theory that the Amtrak BOD is trying to kill the LD service they already lost $3200 of our business and the airlines picked up $1600. There must be more that have been priced out. Is there a plan to kill LD sleeper service? It sure seems like it right now but a watch to see if the bedrooms/roomettes are really selling out might tell the story.
 

Devil's Advocate

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Simple. If people are willing to pay sky high prices for sleepers,Amtrak will charge it.
If so many are willing to pay sky high prices why did Amtrak feel the need to implement a new bidding process for coach customers? Is there any proof that the same number of rooms are being sold as before? Seems to me that supply is constrained and Amtrak is trying to sell fewer rooms at twice the price to cover the shortfall. When routine sleeper travelers balk at the new prices Amtrak simply dumps the rooms on random passengers at a steep discount just before departure.
 
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coventry801

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Feb 24, 2020
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Sleeper price for the second half of 2021 is an insanity.

I guess I will pass LD train travel for the rest of the year. Glad I did multiple coast to coast sleeper trip during 2020 and first half of 2021.
 
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Tlcooper93

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I'm looking to take a sleeper on the silver star/meteor June 26th from Tampa to NYP, and it seems that sleeper prices have hit a "reasonable," point at $631. I guess occasionally there is a sweet spot for fares sometime closer to the departure date. Much less than buisness class for the same date on any legacy airline.
 

zephyr17

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I'm looking to take a sleeper on the silver star/meteor June 26th from Tampa to NYP, and it seems that sleeper prices have hit a "reasonable," point at $631. I guess occasionally there is a sweet spot for fares sometime closer to the departure date. Much less than buisness class for the same date on any legacy airline.
That looks to be middle bucket. Amtrak's yield management will reallocate inventory if anticipated demand appears not to be materializing.
 

Cal

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It sure seems like it right now but a watch to see if the bedrooms/roomettes are really selling out might tell the story.
Tonight's 422 out of LA is sold out on rooms, it says 90% full. Did full route.

Chief shows also 90% full, but also says 4 roomettes, 2 FB's, and 3 bedrooms left at this price.


Checked July 14th, same thing..

Eagle is sold out in rooms, shows 50% full.

Chief shows 60% full, 2 FB's left, 2 bedrooms left. Nothing about roomettes, so I'm assuming not too many are sold yet.
 
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