I am a bit late on this but WSDOT has launched a rather nice and revamped Amtrak Cascades website in conjuction with its 10th anniversity of service.

Very nicely done!

15 Replies to “New Amtrak Cascades website”

  1. Nice site. Great improvement.

    Gotta brag though, a couple of those pics are mine

    1. Awesome! I look forward to someday being that good of a photographer. :)

  2. Much improved site…now they just need at seat entertainment ala Virgin America…let’s get that farebox recovery rate up there!

  3. On the page describing accommodations, it says Coach seats are unreserved. Let us hope the long standing practice of reserved and assigned seats on the Talgos is not going away in either Coach or Business Class. Nice upgrade to the site.

    And, it is about time for an identified “Quiet Car” in each trainset.

  4. They attempted a quiet car once before and that didn’t go over well. The same thing with Sounder.. they tried it for a few month and it was stopped for whatever reason.

    As far as I have always remember, the train has always been reserved. The unreserved is new to me.

    1. I think they just mean you don’t get a seat assignment on your ticket, you get it from the crew.

  5. Well, all the seats out of Portland, Seattle and Eugene have always been assigned. I think out of Vancouver BC it is where ever you want, at least the last time I rode the train. I’ll find out on National Train Day when I go to PDX.

    1. When I took Cascades out of Vancouver BC last week the seats were assigned before you went into the screening area.

  6. When you book a reservation on the Cascades Service, you will always have a seat. (Unless you purchase a multi-ride ticket, which does not guarantee a seat if the train is sold out)

    Seat assignments however are done in various ways.

    At Seattle and Portland the specific seat assignments are given out by the conductors 30 minutes prior to boarding. This is done at KSS, for instance, at the kiosk (usually) at Door 2.

    At the Pacific Central Station in Vancouver BC, it’s done prior to entering the area for the US Immigration and security check. They start that at 4:00PM.

    En route, you just pick an empty seat (designated by the absence of the ‘hat check’ ticket above that seat).

    If you are riding Business Class, you can get your seat assignment at KSS and PDX at the ticket counter at any time during the day of departure.

    Again, en route, you just choose an empty seat.

    Until June, there is no Business Class on the Seattle-Vancouver BC train.

    Jim

    1. Thanks for the updates; I almost always board at Seattle, Vancouver or Portland, and usually in Business Class. I was not aware that it was often festival seating in coach even though seats are technically reserved.

      Too bad about Quiet Cars not working on Sounder – nothing worse than a bunch of yakkers yapping at each other or on their mobiles. There should be a sanctuary for us readers, wool gatherers… and scenery viewers.

      1. Yeah, different countries (and cities) have different norms regarding proper behavior on public transit. You’ll get dirty looks if you’re loud on a train in Japan or Germany, or even on an express bus in Seattle. I haven’t experienced sounder yet, but here’s always headphones. I like my Shure SE110 noise-isolating headphones (noise-cancelling headphones don’t block out voices). They’re basically like earplugs that play music.

  7. As far as the website, it’s nice but I’d like to see a little more substance, a la http://www.capitolcorridor.org, such as the business plan, ridership figures, performance statistics, etc. As it is it’s not so easy to find detailed information on Cascades.

  8. Neat! Now if that second daily train to Vancouver would finally get going; it’s only about a year behind schedule at this point…

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