VIA Rail connection reliability

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thully

OBS Chief
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Sep 2, 2011
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647
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Ann Arbor, MI
I’m planning a trip on VIA’s Corridor soon - will be going from Windsor to Toronto and Montreal. While I’m just going to Toronto on the way there, I was planning on going from Montreal all the way back to Windsor on the way back (and possibly connecting in Ottawa on the way to Montreal to see that branch of the Corridor).

Is there a way to check the reliability of these connections? It gives me the choice between shorter and longer layovers - would probably opt for the shorter one, but not if there is a strong possibility of a misconnect. While it seems it may be possible to take the next train the same day, I’d prefer to avoid arriving late (particularly on the way back to Windsor, as someone is picking me up there).
 
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Feb 27, 2019
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Somewhere in Southern Ontario
A couple of thoughts:

1. If VIA sells you a Montreal > Windsor ticket, rather than two separate, your connection should be guaranteed. If the shortest they offer on a combined ticket is 2 hours, going with anything less is on you. I live adjacent to the corridor and used to be able to identify the VIA trains right off the timetable. Now although there are fewer, they're frequently late and it is track maintenance season too.
2. VIA sells some interesting routing options Toronto > Montreal via Ottawa. There's usually 1-2 hours layover in Ottawa and most of the time it's actually the same consist that continues, despite different train numbers. These can sometimes be found for the same price as the direct Toronto > Montreal, but occupancy numbers on either leg can drive up the price. For example, the Train 40/28 combination for next Monday prices the same in most buckets as the cheapest direct, with 1 hour 16 minutes layover in Ottawa. If you're not in a hurry and can find your price it's definitely worth doing, with 2 meal services in Business.
 

thully

OBS Chief
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Messages
647
Location
Ann Arbor, MI
Is there any way to actually check the historic performance of trains and/or misconnect rate? Basically something like Amtrak Status Maps Archive Database for VIA. For Montreal-Windsor, they actually sell a connection than is less than 2 hours, but I’m wondering how reliable it is…
 

Urban Sky

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thully

OBS Chief
Joined
Sep 2, 2011
Messages
647
Location
Ann Arbor, MI
OK - I’m actually going Windsor-Toronto, staying in Toronto a few days, heading to Montreal from there, and then returning to Windsor. So the connections are only a concern on the return trip - currently booked on 65 connecting to 75, but if I’m likely to misconnect and end up on 79 may want to change to 63…

That link was what I wanted, though - it seems the 65-75 connection hasn’t been missed in the past 10 days or so…
 
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Urban Sky

Service Attendant
Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Messages
163
Location
MTR
OK - I’m actually going Windsor-Toronto, staying in Toronto a few days, heading to Montreal from there, and then returning to Windsor. So the connections are only a concern on the return trip - currently booked on 65 connecting to 75, but if I’m likely to misconnect and end up on 79 may want to change to 63…

That link was what I wanted, though - it seems the 65-75 connection hasn’t been missed in the past 10 days or so…
There is always the possibility that your train get's more than 80 minutes late and you miss your connection, but as you see, it doesn't seem to be likely. I would therefore most probably stick to #65-75:
1654910295054.png
 

thully

OBS Chief
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Sep 2, 2011
Messages
647
Location
Ann Arbor, MI
I’m booked on 65 to 75 on Saturday, so this is good to know. On 72 last Saturday, they announced that anyone connecting to 44 could stay on the train, so I figure it might be the same here.
 
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