Booking Roomette with Points on Amtrak Website

Discussion in 'Amtrak Guest Rewards' started by SarahZ, Aug 9, 2012.

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  1. Aug 9, 2012 #1

    SarahZ

    SarahZ

    SarahZ

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    Do they have plans to add this functionality in the future? If not, is there a reason we have to call AGR to book a roomette with points?

    My boyfriend has over 15,000 points on his account, so he needs to call AGR to book the roomette for our trip home on Thanksgiving. He HATES talking on the phone, though, so our plan is to have him give the agent his AGR account number, confirm his identity, and then hand the phone to me to complete the booking. He's really shy, so he was actually 100% prepared to pay to transfer the points to my account so I could just do everything. (I told him that's silly.)

    Anyway, is there a reason rooms can't be booked online? Is it because they have to merge something internally (coach ticket + room)?
     
  2. Aug 9, 2012 #2

    sunchaser

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    It still has to be done on the phone, and he can confirm his identity and then pass the phone to you. They offered us to allow access/changes to each other's account, but I don't know if they will do that with boyfriend/girlfriend situations. It would be nice to do it all online!
     
  3. Aug 9, 2012 #3

    SarahZ

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    Yes, as I said, that's how we're going to do it. :) My question was, why can't it be done online, and is there a plan to implement that in the future?
     
  4. Aug 9, 2012 #4

    fairviewroad

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    The easy, non-technical answer is: No reason why it can't happen, except that Amtrak has not chosen to invest the resources needed to

    implement this.
     
  5. Aug 9, 2012 #5

    Devil's Advocate

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    There is no logical reason I'm aware of. You can purchase roomettes online via credit card without issue, so it must be some sort of technical problem specific to AGR's rudimentary website. Your boyfriend can instruct AGR to allow you to control his account now and in the future. Once you're authorized on his account he doesn't need to be involved any further and there is no requirement that you're his spouse or anything like that.
     
  6. Aug 9, 2012 #6

    SarahZ

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    Okay, thanks. I'll have him provide authorization so we don't have to deal with this again.
     
  7. Aug 10, 2012 #7

    sjgiss

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    Just a heads up if you are truly traveling on Thanksgiving you can't use AGR points that is a blackout date.
     
  8. Aug 10, 2012 #8

    amamba

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    Yes my H added me as an authorized user to his AGE account. I can book travel, etc on it any time.
     
  9. Aug 10, 2012 #9

    the_traveler

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    Slight clarification as to blackout dates! Around that period, ONLY 11/20, 11/21, 11/24, 11/25 and 11/26 are blackout dates. That means you can not board a train (including a connecting train) on those dates![​IMG] (You can be on board, if you didn't start that segment, on those dates.) If you can avoid those specific dates, you can redeem an AGR award!
     
  10. Aug 10, 2012 #10

    SarahZ

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    Nope. We're all good. We're leaving Albuquerque on Friday, November 23rd. :) I meant to say our trip home after Thanksgiving. Oops.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 10, 2012
  11. Aug 10, 2012 #11

    the_traveler

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    However, you will get to CHI on the 24th, which is a blackout date. If you ask to redeem an award from ABQ to Kalamazoo, the answer will be "no you can't do it because you'll be boarding your second train on a blackout date".[​IMG] However, if you redeem an award from ABQ to CHI only, and then buy a ticket from CHI back home, that will be fine![​IMG]
     
  12. Aug 10, 2012 #12

    SarahZ

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    That's what we're doing. ;) I always book the KAL/CHI portion separately because the prices like to bounce around.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 10, 2012
  13. Aug 10, 2012 #13

    Ryan

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    In this case that works, since the second train is on a blackout day.

    Other times, I'm confused why you don't just make it a part of the redemption reservation since its free - doesn't matter what the price does!

    Edit: I'm grammar challenged this morning, hopefully that makes sense. Need coffee, stat.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 10, 2012
  14. Aug 10, 2012 #14

    amamba

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    I had to do something similar this year. I have an AGR award from DFB - NYP on 11/19. My connection up to NHV on 11/20 I just bought since it was a blackout date and that isn't a terribly expensive part of the trip anyway.
     
  15. Aug 10, 2012 #15

    SarahZ

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    Because KAL - CHI (and vice versa) isn't worth blowing 3,000 points (4,000 for business class) round-trip. I'd rather spend $15-40 on a ticket and earn points for that portion. We don't have an AGR Master Card, so we don't earn points very often. As such, points are very precious to us. ;) We hoard them for the LD trips so we can get a roomette.
     
  16. Aug 10, 2012 #16

    Ryan

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    That was my point - ABQ-KAL is the exact same number of points as ABQ-CHI (no pun intended). It doesn't cost ANY extra points to book your trip all the way back to KAL.

    An ARG redemption can cover a trip on multiple trains.
     
  17. Aug 10, 2012 #17

    NY Penn

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    The problem is that the second train departs on a blackout date.
     
  18. Aug 10, 2012 #18

    Ryan

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    I pretty clearly addressed that in my first post.

    I'm talking about other trips that don't fall on blackout dates.
     
  19. Aug 10, 2012 #19

    the_traveler

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    As Ryan explained (except in this specific case), an AGR award covers multiple trains, and if the award is for a sleeper and one train des not carry sleepers (like KAL-CHI), you BOTH are entitled to BC (if offered) - at no extra cost/points![​IMG]

    So why not use something that's free? If the tickets are $30 each, I would rather use that $60 for something else - like maybe a night out![​IMG] Also with an AGR award, it doesn't matter if they cost $20 each or $50 each - they're still included free!
     
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  20. Aug 10, 2012 #20

    TrainLoverJoy

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    I'm with you (and your boyfriend).....I hate talking on the phone also and will be happy when we can book roomettes with our points online. I'm also "with you" in that I'm from kalamazoo too!
     
  21. Aug 10, 2012 #21

    SarahZ

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    I didn't know the AGR points would cover the second segment of the trip (on a non-blackout date). Michigan is considered a "Special Route", so I didn't think the reward would cover the zone segment AND the special route segment since they're separated on AGR.

    Anyway, I'll keep that in mind for future trips. This is the first time I've booked a roomette with points. Thanks. :)

    Edited to add: I guess I can call AGR right now. We leave KAL on a non-blackout date, so our trip from KAL to CHI should be covered along with our trip from CHI to ABQ. On the way back from CHI, though, we'll have to buy a regular ticket since it's a blackout date.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 10, 2012
  22. Aug 10, 2012 #22

    the_traveler

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    As an example, PDX-SEA and BON-POR are both "Special Routes" - yet you can book a 3 zone sleeper award PDX-POR using the Cascades, EB, LSL and Downeaster. And you also get BC on both the Cascades and Downeaster![​IMG]
     
  23. Aug 10, 2012 #23

    Ryan

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    Cool! Sorry I didn't make that abundantly clear in my first post (like I said, I was coffee challenged). :D
     
  24. Aug 11, 2012 #24

    the_traveler

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    Also remember that AGR awards are all ONE WAY! Thus you need 15,000 points for a Roomette out and another 15,000 points for a Roomette on the return! In your original post, you only mentioned "... my boyfriend has 15,000 points ..." - I hope you have another 15,000 points for the trip out to ABQ also![​IMG]
     
  25. Aug 11, 2012 #25

    SarahZ

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    I had 15,000 on my account that we used for the roomette on the way there. We're using his account for the roomette on the way back. I couldn't buy all 30,000 points for my account because of the points cap. ;)
     

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