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If the Bill Passes

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    Deluxe railway trips are popular throughout the world, and they ain't cheap! Just price a rail journey in the varnish pulled behind Amtrak's "City of New Orleans"! Certainly the DELTA QUEEN could compete with the trains as a unique way to experience a bygone way of life. That's what American Classic Voyages offered and they were very successful until 9/11.

    The key will be offering an impeccable product which will require rather high per diems even for a small room with bunk beds.


      Not to throw a wet blanket on your analogy, Amtrak is very heavily federally subsidized and still very expensive. Passenger trains even in their hay day were not highly profitable on passenger revenue alone. Just like packets, passenger trains made their money hauling freight (Railway Express) and the US mail, passenger revenue was the froth on top. Once the freight and mail revenue declined, the railroads shed passenger service as fast as the ICC would let them.
      If you want to travel by rail from Chicago to New Orleans, you have no choice but to ride the City of New Orleans, but if you want to see the heartland of America by river, right now you have two choices, in a couple years you'll have five or six choices.


        I know how expensive a sleeper is on Amtrak. I rode the CARDINAL and then the EMPIRE BUILDER out to Portland, OR during May. You're right, Jim! It's not cheap, but I was referring to trains like the ORIENT EXPRESS in Europe or the varnish that the current Pullman Company operates pulled by Amtrak. I don't think throngs are riding in Amtrak equipment to relive the good ol' days!