Tuesday, October 13, 2009

and they wonder?

okay, so I wrote this at the end of July as I was planning my trip back to Lansing

MSP - ORD - DTW: . . . Northwest Airlines: there & back = $219

MSP - LAN: . . . Northwest Airlines: there & back = $475

MSP - LAN: . . . VW Passat: there & back = $120

StPl - Lansing: . . . Amtrak train: there & back = $192

And they think they'll convince me to fly? And then have to rent a car & pay for gas anyway? And they wonder why they're losing money? I might do it if I thought there was a snowball's chance in Hell of

a) getting a comfy seat without someone's elbows in my ribs
b) getting anything to eat
c) arriving on time

just getting (a) and (c) would be great.

Amtrak would get me (a) and (b) and (c) ... but it would also take an entire day to get there plus an entire day to get back.



Anonymous said...

Amtrak takes a whole day from St. Paul to Lansing...how long did it take you to drive it? Add the Amtrak benefit of not having to drive, worry about finding a rest stop/restroom/gas, and being able to sleep in that comfy seat and I think the time invested might be worth it. Especially if you can work on the way....(smile)

Gopher MPH said...

I took the train from here to Lansing on one trip with Jr.Gopher #2, who was about 4 months old at the time. It was wonderful. I could change diapers without pulling off to the side of the road; I could nurse him without stopping. I could sleep, sleep sleep ... I really enjoyed it. Big, big seats. Great view on the observation deck. Sooooo much nicer than the car.

It's about 10-12 hours by car to get from here to my place in Lansing. (10 hours by my self; 12 with the kids).
But - after going by train, I would still need to rent a car (there being no real mass transit in Michigan).

So the issue is the convenience of the train balanced by the added financial cost of local transportation.

At some point, yes, I would be willing to pay extra for the comfort. Because Amtrak is *definitely* more comfortable than flying.

If the train went overnight, rather than sucking the whole day ... I would *definitely* take the train.
6 p.m. St Paul --> 6 a.m. Lansing?
Sign me up!
But 7 a.m. St. Paul -->11 p.m. Lansing?
nice trip, but a really, really long day.

You certainly meet more people on the train. Some really nice Amish/Menonnite women were helping me manage Jr.#2 and my luggage while transferring between trains in Chicago.

Peter T said...

> MSP - LAN: . . . Northwest Airlines: there & back = $475

MSP - Los Angeles: . . . Northwest Airlines: there & back = $334

Can you tell which connection has competitors of Northwest (now Delta) flying and which has not? Oh, how lovely to own a monopoly.