Sudden roomette price increase

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niemi24s

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For the OP's trip GPK to CHI in two Roomettes, high bucket is $2246 and low bucket is estimated to be $1106.
 

Michigan Mom

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Due to cost we were shut out of rail travel for our Grand Canyon trip in early August . We tried to book a BR trip from PHL to FLG 8 months out. Prices were coming in at near $4976 R/T-. OK that's old news posted a few times before but thats not the end of the story.
UPDATE: We checked the price yesterday and the trip is now near $5675 R/T with bedrooms still available 3 weeks out. We wanted to take the train but for $1600 first class air to PHX was the far more affordable choice. If Amtrak believes their sleepers are worth nearly 4X first class air and they can sell out at those prices, then we are shut out of their customer base. Since sleepers are still available, this has got to be part of Amtrak's plan to remain non-competitiive and discourage LD ridership. What else could it be?
We have used Amtrak for our LD trips for over 18 years but sadly not this year.
What's happening is Disney pricing... there's enough wealthy people willing to pay, that there's no business reason to care about anyone who can't. Basically the wealthy are hollowing out America as we know it.
 
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In may I booked a roomette for 2 adults on the CZ travelling CHI-SF in february 2022. I paid $789, wich I believe was lower bucket, or at least a fair price in my opinion.

I have been monitoring the price since, and it recently went up to $1278. I would call that a massive jump in price.
 

amtrakp42

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I’ve been eyeing the prices for roomettes on the Empire Builder from Glacier National Park to Chicago and last week the price for two adults and two children was under $1300 (for 2 roomettes), 11 months out. Just a couple of days ago I checked and the price increased to $2300, also 11 months out. I can’t even buy my tickets yet because we’re planning this for mid summer of next year. I’ve been reading all about the need to book as soon as possible, and discussions about buckets. Any insights on why the sudden increase? (In two days, I should finally be able to buy tickets based on the dates of travel.) Thanks!
Try several different dates as sometimes there may be several bookings on one certain day. And I have seen prices way out come down in the spring. I've have done this for 40 years and it varies every year. I rode the zephry last summer (2020) and all sleepers were booked full with only about 10 riders in each of 2 coaches with rear 3rd coach locked. And also some travel groups will book a block of sleepers for one day. I will say with the demand now that I haven't seen prices go down much after about March for the summer. I booked all my trips in March with one in April to get the lowest bucket price. Also it is much faster to check day by day on the phone app than website.
 

niemi24s

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Welcome to the Forum!

In may I booked a roomette for 2 adults on the CZ travelling CHI-SF in february 2022. I paid $789, wich I believe was lower bucket, or at least a fair price in my opinion.

I have been monitoring the price since, and it recently went up to $1278. I would call that a massive jump in price.
That's nothing more than a jump from low bucket to high bucket and all such jumps are massive. For one adult, Roomette fares can as much as double from low to high bucket.
 

20th Century Rider

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What's happening is Disney pricing... there's enough wealthy people willing to pay, that there's no business reason to care about anyone who can't. Basically the wealthy are hollowing out America as we know it.
Yup... we all need to make sacrifices to make the wealthy even richer! Aaah and the corporations increase profits by rising the prices of all commodities... while reducing the size of packaging!

RE: Amtrak pricing is going up up up as well. But isn't this supposed to be a government supported service for the tax paying citizens???
 

FunNut

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I've been on here for quite a while but haven't visited in some time. Can someone point me to "Niemi24's chart," please. My trips are in a roomette, usually ABQ-LAX and back.
 

pennyk

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I've been on here for quite a while but haven't visited in some time. Can someone point me to "Niemi24's chart," please. My trips are in a roomette, usually ABQ-LAX and back.
There are more charts in the FAQ forum.

This partial update shows those one adult sleeper fares now offered on NER 66 and 67. As only three in each category could be found there's no way of knowing if any additional fares are loaded into Arrow.


View attachment 22012
 

IndyLions

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What's happening is Disney pricing... there's enough wealthy people willing to pay, that there's no business reason to care about anyone who can't. Basically the wealthy are hollowing out America as we know it.
I agree it sucks that prices are so high these days for travel. But let’s face it - I think we all saw it coming. Demand is high from ALL Americans, hardly just the wealthy. And we’re all paying the price for Amtrak having such a small inventory of available capacity.

Your bogeyman of the “wealthy” is a fallacy. The wealthy don’t travel Amtrak for the most part, nor can they fill Disney to capacity. if you took an Amtrak train today or walked a Disney park, I doubt you would see much difference in the demographics from two years ago.

The people traveling Amtrak today are the same ones that traveled it two years ago. A combination of lower income folks who need to get from Point A to Point B, retirees who now have two years of travel budget that has not been spent, and middle income folks probably charging way too much on their credit cards for that big vacation this year.
 

20th Century Rider

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I agree it sucks that prices are so high these days for travel. But let’s face it - I think we all saw it coming. Demand is high from ALL Americans, hardly just the wealthy. And we’re all paying the price for Amtrak having such a small inventory of available capacity.

Your bogeyman of the “wealthy” is a fallacy. The wealthy don’t travel Amtrak for the most part, nor can they fill Disney to capacity. if you took an Amtrak train today or walked a Disney park, I doubt you would see much difference in the demographics from two years ago.

The people traveling Amtrak today are the same ones that traveled it two years ago. A combination of lower income folks who need to get from Point A to Point B, retirees who now have two years of travel budget that has not been spent, and middle income folks probably charging way too much on their credit cards for that big vacation this year.
Everyone's getting hit with out of control inflation... gas just went up another dime yesterday... after going up 15 cents last week; yeeks! $3.75 per gallon... on the West Coast everything is on fire as well. And wherever you live you know that food packaging is shrinking as the price goes up!

And sadly enough many have now been priced out of the housing market and face rising rents.

As for public travel... many local bus lines have just gone out of business and airfares are out of control. I guess Amtrak is no different; if I can get a sleeper from coast to coast for $1500 to $2000 [double that for round trip] I grab it. The article below explains things realistically...

 

me_little_me

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From what I've read, in most cases, prices really have not gone up that much. Comparing gas prices to the depressed 2020 numbers is wrong. One has to look back at 2019. And for travel, not just on Amtrak, think about how much was spent in 2020. I know, it was virtually zero after March for us and the travel in January and February were scheduled in 2019. Many are in that situation so travel now is really two years of travel in 6 months. "This too shall pass" (Old Persian Adage).

I know that my one Amtrak trip later this year (with a possible second one if I can get it in) is making up for the three I didn't take last year and the missed ones from this year. So like so many others (especially those of us with few years of travel left), I'm willing to spend more than in the past on a trip. In the future, I expect most people will go back to their normal pattern and prices will settle down.

Our touristy town is just full of visitors EVERY DAY - more on Mondays than even on Saturdays in the past! The museum I volunteer at has gift shop sales that have blown away even the 2019 number - doubling those and more. and the free Model RR club and museum I am a member of are having more people in the building and on the grounds at one time than we used to get in the whole day. Donations are unbelievable and we've found many $20s and even a $50 bill in our donation box when two years ago, $1 to $5 was the norm and $10 bills were few.
 

Bob Dylan

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From what I've read, in most cases, prices really have not gone up that much. Comparing gas prices to the depressed 2020 numbers is wrong. One has to look back at 2019. And for travel, not just on Amtrak, think about how much was spent in 2020. I know, it was virtually zero after March for us and the travel in January and February were scheduled in 2019. Many are in that situation so travel now is really two years of travel in 6 months. "This too shall pass" (Old Persian Adage).

I know that my one Amtrak trip later this year (with a possible second one if I can get it in) is making up for the three I didn't take last year and the missed ones from this year. So like so many others (especially those of us with few years of travel left), I'm willing to spend more than in the past on a trip. In the future, I expect most people will go back to their normal pattern and prices will settle down.

Our touristy town is just full of visitors EVERY DAY - more on Mondays than even on Saturdays in the past! The museum I volunteer at has gift shop sales that have blown away even the 2019 number - doubling those and more. and the free Model RR club and museum I am a member of are having more people in the building and on the grounds at one time than we used to get in the whole day. Donations are unbelievable and we've found many $20s and even a $50 bill in our donation box when two years ago, $1 to $5 was the norm and $10 bills were few.
Same thing here in Austin, and I'm sure all Tourist towns are experiencing the same thing as pent up demand has resulted in an explosion of Travel.

Unfortunately, the current COVID Wave caused by the Delta Varaint and the Unvaccinated will probably set us back to the 2020/early 2021 Levels of Travel.🥺😷
 

20th Century Rider

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I've been on here for quite a while but haven't visited in some time. Can someone point me to "Niemi24's chart," please. My trips are in a roomette, usually ABQ-LAX and back.
If you are flexible and get a good Amtrak agent [Philadelphia Based] they can usually find the best possible fare within the date range you want to go. A few things of interest... the Florida based agents are outsourced and IMO don't have the skills or the customer interest to provide the same level of service. Also, I've noticed that certain city pairs are higher... I guess that depends on overall demand. ABQ and LAX seem to be a high frequency route. The fares I found for September and October ranged from $429 to $587 on dates I checked. Kind-a funny in an annoying way that advanced search allows flexibility for 'any time of day departure' when there is only one train per day!

Yup... I know... coach can be tough on that stretch... and you could end up with a seat mate which can be good or bad. You may end up in an aisle. Amtrak traditionally places same genders together for coach seating. And the SSL is usually packed out of ABQ. Flying for around $250 to $350 is a hassle as well plus the expense of getting from airport to local destination.

So try to get that Philadelphia based Amtrak agent and they may be able to find a lower fare.
 

Sidney

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If you are flexible and get a good Amtrak agent [Philadelphia Based] they can usually find the best possible fare within the date range you want to go. A few things of interest... the Florida based agents are outsourced and IMO don't have the skills or the customer interest to provide the same level of service. Also, I've noticed that certain city pairs are higher... I guess that depends on overall demand. ABQ and LAX seem to be a high frequency route. The fares I found for September and October ranged from $429 to $587 on dates I checked. Kind-a funny in an annoying way that advanced search allows flexibility for 'any time of day departure' when there is only one train per day!

Yup... I know... coach can be tough on that stretch... and you could end up with a seat mate which can be good or bad. You may end up in an aisle. Amtrak traditionally places same genders together for coach seating. And the SSL is usually packed out of ABQ. Flying for around $250 to $350 is a hassle as well plus the expense of getting from airport to local destination.

So try to get that Philadelphia based Amtrak agent and they may be able to find a lower fare.
If I am on a train with a sightseer car and I'm in Coach I'll always opt for an aisle seat. If I have a seatmate,the last thing I want to do is bother him to get out of my seat. I usually spend most of my time in the SSL car and if my seatmate happens to be obese,has BO or is obnoxious(it's happened several times) I'll spend overnight in the SSL Not the most comfortable for sleeping,but at least you have your own seat.

I would love single seating in the Coaches. A few of the business cars have them. I would gladly.pay a premium for that. If only roomettes weren't so pricy for just an eight hour period..overnight. A few years ago you could grab a roomette for $100 for an overnight.

I
 

20th Century Rider

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If I am on a train with a sightseer car and I'm in Coach I'll always opt for an aisle seat. If I have a seatmate,the last thing I want to do is bother him to get out of my seat. I usually spend most of my time in the SSL car and if my seatmate happens to be obese,has BO or is obnoxious(it's happened several times) I'll spend overnight in the SSL Not the most comfortable for sleeping,but at least you have your own seat.

I would love single seating in the Coaches. A few of the business cars have them. I would gladly.pay a premium for that. If only roomettes weren't so pricy for just an eight hour period..overnight. A few years ago you could grab a roomette for $100 for an overnight.

I
RE the SSL... I have been on crowded trains when the conductor has restricted the amount of time you can use the SSL... and frequently some conductors restrict use at late hours of the night. One thing that is very risky is getting out of your seat and placing something there to reserve your space when you need to use the WC or get a snack. Best to make friends with some other passengers sitting there... and hold it with something of little value... then return as quickly as you can. The SWC is usually a full train... especially after ABQ.
 

zephyr17

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Well, everyone complains about VIA's fares, but in a trip I am planning for early April I found that the roomette fares on VIA from Toronto to Vancouver are roughly the same as the roomette fares from New York to Seattle (via LSL and EB) for my travel dates. The Amtrak fares are almost double what I am paying for the same trip in November, the LSL roomette alone is 740, which is high bucket . I was originally planning to do Everett-Vancouver-Toronto-New York and then return from New York on Amtrak, since the trip is basically about returning to ride the Canadian. With fares about the same, I'd rather just stay on VIA which is a much better product for the money.
 

Qapla

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Regardless if the price increase is "sudden" or not they are very inconsistent.

I just looked at a trip from PAK to NYP. Both Silvers serve both stops. On one date the Star is more expensive for the coach seat and cheaper for a roomette than the Silver is while on another date the Silver is higher for coach and cheaper for the roomette.

Also, in the same week coach can vary by $42 from one day to the next even though the percentage of how full the train is is the same for both trains.

Either way - a price difference of nearly $400 between coach and a roomette for an overnight trip seems a bit steep.

It's obvious that the people who set these fares do not ride the trains - or, if they do, they ride for free and have no real idea of the ridiculousness of the prices they are setting/charging.
 

Michigan Mom

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I agree it sucks that prices are so high these days for travel. But let’s face it - I think we all saw it coming. Demand is high from ALL Americans, hardly just the wealthy. And we’re all paying the price for Amtrak having such a small inventory of available capacity.

Your bogeyman of the “wealthy” is a fallacy. The wealthy don’t travel Amtrak for the most part, nor can they fill Disney to capacity. if you took an Amtrak train today or walked a Disney park, I doubt you would see much difference in the demographics from two years ago.

The people traveling Amtrak today are the same ones that traveled it two years ago. A combination of lower income folks who need to get from Point A to Point B, retirees who now have two years of travel budget that has not been spent, and middle income folks probably charging way too much on their credit cards for that big vacation this year.
Oh, it's not a fallacy. I didn't say the demographics changed. It's a continuation.
 

Michigan Mom

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Regardless if the price increase is "sudden" or not they are very inconsistent.

I just looked at a trip from PAK to NYP. Both Silvers serve both stops. On one date the Star is more expensive for the coach seat and cheaper for a roomette than the Silver is while on another date the Silver is higher for coach and cheaper for the roomette.

Also, in the same week coach can vary by $42 from one day to the next even though the percentage of how full the train is is the same for both trains.

Either way - a price difference of nearly $400 between coach and a roomette for an overnight trip seems a bit steep.

It's obvious that the people who set these fares do not ride the trains - or, if they do, they ride for free and have no real idea of the ridiculousness of the prices they are setting/charging.
The prices have gotten quite ridiculous, yes.
When you look at a city pair and realize you can purchase a first class seat on a major airline for less than the cost of a roomette, or purchase a coach seat and get there in a couple of hours for the same money... yes, it's arguably high cost for the value and yes, there are retired/wealthy/both who are more than willing to pay. So it's hard to see the prices coming down, at least in the near term.
 

Bostontoallpoints

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I travel to Florida from Boston often. I use to take 2 trips a year on Amtrak. I can fly for 1/2 the price of a roomette for 2 people. I can fly 1st class for less than a roomette. The food and service have gone down hill, and the trains are beat up. I don’t see the value in Amtrak long distance.
 

PaTrainFan

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I travel to Florida from Boston often. I use to take 2 trips a year on Amtrak. I can fly for 1/2 the price of a roomette for 2 people. I can fly 1st class for less than a roomette. The food and service have gone down hill, and the trains are beat up. I don’t see the value in Amtrak long distance.
Neither does Amtrak, apparently.
 
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