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Hey y'all!

 

Last week I posted in the guest area asking questions regarding my first overnight trip and the answers were so plentiful and helpful that I decided to join.

 

I've come to appreciate trains late in life. My first experience on a train was in 2010 outside the US. I was in England visiting a friend when we went to visit one of the last lines there that still has the old fashioned train cars. There is also a very small train museum there and I walked among some of the older engines that were once used in the heyday of their train travel. Something there clicked in my head and I was instantly drawn in. Not long after that vacation, a friend asked if I would be willing to help her move her parents from Atlanta to New Orleans. She paid for my train ticket there and we packed up a Uhaul and drove it back. I leaped at the chance to see what train travel was like here in the US. I thoroughly enjoyed the trip and took the same trip again a few years ago. Yes, always only from NO to ATL.

 

Fast forward to 2018 and I'm wanting to visit my friends in and around Chicago, but this year I just don't feel like driving and I'm pretty much over plane travel unless it's overseas. So I decided to take the train and just use public transportation and my own two feet to get around Chicago. I also decided to spend the extra money for a sleeper because while I know the coach seats are quite comfortable, I want privacy if I'm going to sleep for anywhere near 8 hours. I bought a book about train travel and what is important to know, but it's only as good as information up to 2015. I was happy to find this forum, though, where I could find more current information.

 

tl;dr? ---- hey y'all! ^_^

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Welcome aboard! :hi:

 

Not to blow our own horn, but you will probably get more current information here on AU than from books. Even if the book was published in May or June of 2018, things may have changed since then.

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Welcome aboard! :hi:

 

Not to blow our own horn, but you will probably get more current information here on AU than from books. Even if the book was published in May or June of 2018, things may have changed since then.

 

To be completely honest, I never thought to search for a forum. I have always loved forums, but find they are a dying breed. I stumbled across this one purely by chance last week and don't even remember what I was looking for that led me here.

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Welcome Aboard! Wise choice for your Trip and your Choice of Forums!

 

Look forward to your Trip Report!

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Welcome aboard! :hi:

 

Not to blow our own horn, but you will probably get more current information here on AU than from books. Even if the book was published in May or June of 2018, things may have changed since then.

To be completely honest, I never thought to search for a forum. I have always loved forums, but find they are a dying breed. I stumbled across this one purely by chance last week and don't even remember what I was looking for that led me here.

 

 

This is a great resource, but books aren't bad either. One book I recommend for new rail travelers is

Waiting on a Train: The Embattled Future of Passenger Rail Service.

 

It's a travelogue by a journalist-turned-author who rides Amtrak for a year and travels every route (or almost all of them). Along the way, he talks to everyone from politicos, Amtrak execs, community boosters, railfans, and fellow passengers. It's an enjoyable read and gives a more thorough picture of rail travel than one will find in the promotional material as well as helping to manage expectations based on the occasionally fluffy public relations efforts. You will hear people here whine about the aging equipment and often late trains but the book explains (without too much detail) about why things are the way they are. It's almost ten years old, but many of the points expressed in the book are more relevant now than ever.

 

Incidentally, there are a few train forums out there, but this one is probably the most open and the most helpful to the casual traveler. Welcome, and please share your experiences down the line!

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Welcome from me, too! I am sure you will find, as I have, that taking the train and public transit increases your enjoyment of the trip. Nothing like real-time travel across the landscape, in the company of like-minded individuals, to satisfy the intellect and senses.

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