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Via Rail and luggage restrictions


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#1 willem

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Posted 10 September 2016 - 03:50 PM

Via's web site gave me the following luggage restrictions.

 

BAGGAGE ALLOWANCE (VIA)
Carry-on baggage
One (1) personal article of up to 11.5 kg (25 lb.) / 43 x 15 x 33 cm (17 x 6 x 13 in.)

AND

One (1) large article of up to 18 kg (40 lb.) / 158 linear cm (62 linear in.)
OR
Two (2) small articles of up to 11.5 kg (25 lb.) / 54.5 x 39.5 x 23 cm (21.5 x 15.5 x 9 in.) each.

OVERWEIGHT CARRY-ON BAGGAGE:
Additional fee of $20 tax incl. (per one-way trip) if baggage is 18.5-23 kg (41-50 lb.)
Carry-on baggage over 23 kg (50 lb.) is not permitted on board.

ADDITIONAL CARRY-ON ITEM(S) ALLOWED:
One (1) additional article of up to 23 kg (50 lb.) for a fee of $30 tax incl. (per one-way trip).

 

How strict is Via on the dimensions? Are rigid sizing boxes used to determine if an object is oversize?

 

The pay-per-item fees listed address weight but not size. Are oversize items allowed at all?

 

In case it matters, I would be taking the Maple Leaf to Toronto and the bus from Toronto to Dearborn, and I'm concerned about the size of the small articles (21.5 x 15.5 x 9 inch). My current luggage is 23 x 15 x 10, and most "carry-on" luggage that I see advertised is nominally 22 inches with a linear dimension (L+W+D) of 45 inches. Strictly speaking, neither my current luggage nor the normal 22 inch carry-on size would meet VIA specifications for small articles.

 


2003, 10,491 miles: Empire Builder; City of New Orleans; Cascades; Lake Shore Limited
2004,  5,670 miles: Coast Starlight; California Zephyr; Empire Builder
2005,  4,864 miles: Empire Builder; Capitol Limited; Silver Meteor; Sunset Limited; City of New Orleans
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2007,  5,425 miles: Pacific Surfliner; Empire Builder
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2013,  6,502 miles: Empire Builder; Coast Starlight; Southwest Chief; Missouri River Runner; Lincoln Service
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2015, 32,198 miles: Capitol Limited; Empire Builder; Silver Meteor; Lake Shore Limited; Coast Starlight; California Zephyr; Southwest Chief; Sunset Limited; Crescent; NER; Acela; Cardinal; San Joaquin

 

#2 greatcats

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Posted 10 September 2016 - 03:54 PM

When I took the Canadian from Vancouver almost five years ago, the agent insisted on checking my large backpack, as there was no room for it in the sleeper. They provided me a small tote bag for overnight items, which I still have.
I was a commuter railroad employee in NJ for many years until 2002, and have since been a tour guide at Grand Canyon National Park and Ketchikan, Alaska. Also, have been a National Park Volunteer at Hawaii Volcanoes and now Sunset Crater Volcano near my home. If not on Amtrak, also like long road trips, camping some of the time.

#3 zephyr17

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Posted 12 September 2016 - 03:45 PM

VIA itself is pretty strict on baggage limitations and they do check.  However, I will say for the Maple Leaf, which is a VIA train from Toronto to Niagara Falls, ON, they weren't.

 

The space available in sleepers is quite limited, and luggage that ordinarily carry on on Amtrak, I most definitely check on the Canadian.


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#4 Tennessee Traveler

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Posted 13 September 2016 - 08:48 AM

In fact, on the OCEAN there is no room for the larger bag--almost no room for the carry on so all sleeper passengers are required to check all but the small carryon you keep with you in your room.  Compared to Amtrak and the CANADIAN the Ocean rooms are small and very tight although they do have a nice bathroom in each cabin.  My personal experience this past June was that room seat was too hard and too upright with no recline.  On both trains I rode, the bed was large enough but it "slanted" toward the floor and was uncomfortable to sleep.  So when you can head for the Park observation car for more comfort.


Edited by Tennessee Traveler, 13 September 2016 - 08:49 AM.


#5 zephyr17

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Posted 13 September 2016 - 12:00 PM

I have never ridden the Ocean with Renaissance equipment, but I've ridden the Canadian quite a bit.  How was the bed slanted?  All the beds I had on the Canadian were perfectly flat.  The only slanted bed I've ever had was in Asiana business class flying to Seoul.


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#6 NS VIA Fan

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Posted 13 September 2016 - 12:30 PM

........How was the bed slanted?  All the beds I had on the Canadian were perfectly flat.  The only slanted bed I've ever had was in Asiana business class flying to Seoul.

 

I've been on a Ren Ocean often and the beds have been flat too....never encounter one 'slanted' toward the floor. I'm gressing....perhaps one of the arms that lower the bed let go causing it to tilt??

 

Scroll down here for a couple of shots showing a Ren Bedroom set-up:

 

http://discuss.amtra...d-on-the-ocean/



#7 Tennessee Traveler

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Posted 13 September 2016 - 05:25 PM

Tilted may not be the correct word to describe the bed.  I rode the Ocean west and east and the best though narrow slept well going west.  But coming back east it seem the mattress was wearing and created the sense of rolling to the weak side of the mattress.  The bed itself was not tilted. In my opinion, there is no comparison in the mattresses on the Ocean with those on the Budd equipped Canadian which I have ridded several times both in roomettes and bedrooms.  In the end I just did not like the Renaissance equipment.



#8 norfolkwesternhenry

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Posted 16 September 2016 - 04:45 PM

When I took the Canadian, I checked my large backpack, and took my smaller one on board. Space wasn't an issue in a upper or lower bunk, even as I am 6' 1.5"

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