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VIA Rail
(04-15-2016, 10:27 AM)SammyOES Wrote: Just as an extreme example, I use to prefer doing an 8 hour drive than doing a 1 hour flight from NYC to my parents place because the door-to-door time was usually a bit faster and more reliable.

I'm in NJ once or twice a month.  I've driven that trip exactly twice, both times because there were no flights (once because of snow, once just after 9/11).  And I'm a long-time "car guy" since before I was old enough to hold a fork and a knife.

And yet I won't do an 8h drive voluntarily, even though in total time it's not that much worse than a flight: door to door, Kitchener to NJ (via YYZ and EWR) is about 5h for me: I leave my home at 4 AM and arrive at the office at 9 AM.

  • Long car drives are boring
  • If I get tired or sleepy, I risk an accident, and there is frequently no convenient place to rest
  • On a train or by air, I can sleep, read or do email
Now, I use a rental car at the NJ end as our office is not in a city (NJ is full of small towns) and there is no convenient public transport.  Were I going to NYC, I would absolutely take the train from EWR in order to avoid the unpredictable delays getting into NYC through the tunnels or on the bridges.
A friend of mine who normally does not comment on transport issues heard the Via announcement and was fully supportive. He cares less about the length of the trip, and just wants more choice of departure times.
My Twitter: @KevinLMaps
So, to put it far too succinctly...

Step 1: Compete with Bus.
Step 2: Compete with Car.
Step 3: Compete with Plane.

Yeah, I'm getting kind of lost in what all the wants and desires are anymore.

I just want something better than the low-frequency, late, expensive, cludged-together trains that VIA has now.

Note: absolutely nothing wrong with the LRC Coaches - the one shining jewel in VIA's fleet.
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
There is so much inertia in favour of already existing modes of transportation, that I fear this service will be a failure unless it is very fast (at last 200km/h) and rather frequent (comparable to airplane frequency from Toronto Island).
200 km/h average, or 200 km/h maximum? That's a key difference!
(04-15-2016, 03:46 PM)tomh009 Wrote: 200 km/h average, or 200 km/h maximum?  That's a key difference!

Tom, when I travel now it's much faster and flying is definitely quicker. But I have nexus now, am flying early morning and Thursday night flights, and am heading to an easy to get to office.

Before I was flying on major holidays, had crappy access to the airports and good access out of the area by car (I was actually in NJ but usually just say NYC because it's easier Smile ).
We are going to Montreal in a few weeks. I purchased tickets on The ViaRail web page and for the first time, one of the return tickets is for the GO Train. Do ViaRail and Go have a partnership with some commutes?
Indeed they do. Just about any route that both services cover, ticketing allows for both.

You can even use a GO ticket on a Via train, but ONLY if they have space within their bookings (booked passengers,of course, have priority).
My Twitter: @KevinLMaps
(03-31-2017, 09:54 AM)KevinL Wrote: Indeed they do. Just about any route that both services cover, ticketing allows for both.

You can even use a GO ticket on a Via train, but ONLY if they have space within their bookings (booked passengers,of course, have priority).

Note that you get a worse ticket by buying it through VIA Rail: it is only valid on a specific time and date and is non-exchangeable, non-refundable. So you're better off if you have a Presto card and tapping in with it.

I think it used to be true that you could pay a supplement to use your GO ticket on a VIA train (e.g. if you had a GO pass), but I couldn't find any documentation of that in 2017.

Via Rail searching bags after drinking, assaults on Manitoba trains
Customers asked to arrive an hour early to have carry-on bags checked for alcohol
Typical Canadian knee jerk reaction. Inconvenience, annoy, and punish the responsible people instead od dealing with the offenders.
Well it does seem to only be on trains to/from Thompson so that's something. I don't think it'd be feasible to do it nationally.
Seems a bit strange that they would introduce alcohol searches for travel FROM Thompson, but apparently not on trains TO Thompson.

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