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MSP_Train_Hopper

Vancouver Baggage Storage

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My father & I will be arriving in Vancouver on a Monday night in early April on the Amtrak Cascades and leaving the next evening on the VIA Canadian. We would like to check out of our hotel Tuesday morn, ditch our bags (both carryon and to be checked) at the station and spend the day sightseeing around Vancouver. What is the baggage storage situation at the station? VIA says that checked baggage opens at noon on Tuesday, but Amtrak lists it as 6:00am. Both list the ticket counter opening at 6:00am. Will we be able to check our VIA bags and leave our carryons at the station before noon? Would we have to pay the Amtrak day storage charges before noon, and then that evening collect them and send the bags we don't need off as checked on VIA?

 

Thanks in advance!

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Amtrak has no station baggage services in Vancouver, BC, it is all Via. Checked bags on the Cascades are handled by the Amtrak train crew, not the station, and checked bags on the the Cascades in Vancouver must be claimed IMMEDIATELY upon arrival before going through Canadian Customs. So there are no "Amtrak day storage charges" because there is no Amtrak day storage there.

 

While I don't have experience really early in the morning in Vancouver, all Via services are available by the arrival of the morning Cascades at 11:40. I've been taking the Cascades up to connect with the eastbound Canadian regularly about once a year for the last few years. After clearing Customs, I immediately go to the Via desk, check my big bag through, and day check my carry ons so I can spend the day in baggage free in Vancouver. BTW, Via does not charge for day checking bags for Sleeper Plus and Prestige passengers.

Edited by zephyr17

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My experience this past February 2018 is the same as zephyr17. I arrived on Cascades 516 just before noon and retrieved my check bag trainside and then past through customers before entering the station in Vancouver. A very helpful and friendly young man Via employee led me to the ticket counter and baggage check counter where he checked my large bag for that evening's Canadian and day checked my two small carry on type bags. Then I was out and about in Vancouver with just a backpack containing my valuables including passport, tickets, etc. Was no problem getting my day check bags when I came back to the station. Only complaint I had was that the lounge for sleeper passengers did not open until 6 pm and was quite small so was overflowing by time the conductor and dining car attendant came through the lounge collecting tickets and assigning lunch and dinner reservations for the first full day. Breakfast is first come, first server and there is no dinner served on the evening of departure. Only snack type tidbit type food in the Prestige Park Car available first night since departure is 8:30 PM.

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I usually get back to the station around 7:00 or so. As Tenessee points out the lounge is small without much in the way of amenities (coffee, tea and small cookies in cellophane wrappers) so I don't particularly want to spend a lot of time there. I usually go out and sit on the patio, they have space heaters, but there are not a lot of people out there, at least when traveling in the off season. I just want to be there in time for initial board so I can dump my stuff in my room and score a dome seat for the departure.

 

Have dinner before going to the station, the hors d'oeuvres they serve won't substitute for a meal.

 

I can't imagine what that lounge is like in the summer when the passenger load is many times larger than when I travel in November.

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I am hoping they do. We are staying downtown so worse case scenario is we go check out downtown sights, checkout at 11 and then head to the station to ditch the bags before going sightseeing again.

Edited by MSP_Train_Hopper

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