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» RAILforum » Passenger Trains » Amtrak » Why some folks refuse to travel in coach (Page 2)

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Author Topic: Why some folks refuse to travel in coach
notelvis
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quote:
Originally posted by blancoj:
I forgot to add that I enjoy sitting in coach and meeting new people, but when it's time to sleep, I prefer a sleeper. Just as I discovered last spring that I'm too old now to enjoy staying in funky old motels, I also do not enjoy sleeping in coach. I can't seem to fall asleep on airplanes, either.

There was a time when I didn't mind a funky old hotel and I have certainly stayed in some funky ones.

Now I have a couple or three preferred chains....the cheap one (Red Roof) that I use when I'm alone and the couple of step-up chains (Choice Hotels or Country Inn) that we look for when the family is along.

And admittedly, one of my long-time favorite Red Roofs is beginning to edge towards seedy....that extra $25 per night might be worth it!

--------------------
David Pressley

Advocating for passenger trains since 1973!

Climbing toward 5,000 posts like the Southwest Chief ascending Raton Pass. Cautiously, not nearly as fast as in the old days, and hoping to avoid premature reroutes.

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blancoj
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QUOTE]There was a time when I didn't mind a funky old hotel and I have certainly stayed in some funky ones.[/QUOTE]


My love for funky motels ended this past May when we stayed at the Chief Motel in Custer, SD. I had read many glowing reports about how this motel was funky in a fun way. It was not, it was just funky.

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CHATTER
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Yes, I also have had an M.O. of staying in one chain of motel when I am alone and another when wife or other family members are with me. And I agree completely--Red Roof, which used to work nicely, has slipped.

When wife and I travel the road, Country Inn is so nice. I like the books by the fireplace in the lobby.

When I was younger I did not mind more spartan accomodations. But then again, the same was true of traveling in coach while on an overnight train. [Wink]

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smitty195
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My favorite chain of hotels when traveling are usually a Hampton Inn or Holiday Inn Express. Some of these hotels are VERY nice. One of the nicest Holiday Inn Express hotels I've stayed in is located in Tehachapi, CA of all places. And one of the best Hampton Inns I've stayed in is located in Ukiah, CA. When staying in a large metro area, I usually go for the full-service hotels (Hilton, Marriott, Omni, Westin etc) but in smaller towns I have found that the two chains I mentioned above are really excellent.
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Gilbert B Norman
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Mr. Smith and I are on the same page regarding hotel brand levels, but our reasons for selecting such are reversed.

When I am on auto trips, such as Chicago Wash (connect with Auto Train, visit friends, visit and stock up at wineries), I prefer to have my overnight en route stop (Pgh or Akron) at full service hotels. The reason is that when I put the auto to bed or turn it over to the valet, I will have no reason to go near it until next morning. Therefore I need not be concerned with finding a restaurant or about having moderate alcohol; also I'm starting to loose night vision and if a drive at night in an unfamiliar environment can be avoided, so much the better.

At destination, I'm visiting with friends or family (NY area). There we will be going out to Dinner and maybe a concert, and consequently, I have no need for the full service restaurant in this case. However, if I were visiting a city as a destination on my own, I too like Mr. Smith would be seeking a major brand full service hotel.

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Dan Adams
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Some readers might be interested in another approach to accommodations on the road, during the summer. Many universities (often in downtown areas, ie. Columbia Univ.) offer residences during the summer at very reasonable prices. I've been planning a rail trip to Halifax from Toronto and will be staying at Dalhousie University for a few days.
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City of Miami
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How do you find those, Dan, i.e. the universities offering reasonable short term rates in summer?
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Dan Adams
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I'm more familiar with Canada, of course, but if I decided on visiting an American city, then I'd begin a search of universities in that city. In New York City, for instance, I'm familiar with Union Theological Seminary which offers hotel-like accommodations all year on a leafy street in NW Manhattan, if available. A/C, TV, Fridge. www.landmark@columbia.edu
For my trip, I Googled "Dalhousie University, summer accommodations". Also, I'm taking a ferry to Newfoundland and will stay at Memorial University in St John's for a few days..$25 a night for a single room! I searched in the same way as I did for Dalhousie.
McGill University in Montreal is similar. www.mcgill.ca/residences/summer/
If you don't have luck with the university's web site, phone them directly.

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sojourner
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Mr Adams: In NYC, Columbia University/Union Theological Seminary sounds great, but if one is traveling Amtrak and arriving at Penn Station with luggage, taking the subway all the way up to Morningside Heights in NYC Manhattan, is pretty inconvenient. It's way too far to walk, and taxis would be quite costly. One could take a bus, I suppose, but it's slow--and luggage on a NYC bus is no fun either. So it pretty much has to be the subway. If one travels light and is young, it's perfectly do-able; but older people with more luggage, after taking a cross-country trip . . . I'd say, not so doable.

OTOH, your suggestion for McGill sounds like an excellent idea for me to consider if I go to Montreal again in summer. Although usually I tend to go in fall, and school is open. . . .

Re chains: I too like Hampton Inn or Holiday Inn Express when affordable and when the location works for me. Breakfasts are usually good too. In fact, I often prefer them to full service hotels, which rarely include breakfast and which offer it at very high prices.

OTOH, in some cities, the location of these isn't convenient. And in first-tier-tourist meccas, they aren't always so cheap! In NYC the one near Penn Station (called Hampton Inn Madison Square Garden, I believe, on W31), when I checked, wanted $320 for a weeknight in March! And I looked at the place, rooms are smaller and more cramped than a typical Hampton Inn (though breakfast room is nice enough) . . . but it's convenient, not just to Penn Station but to Madison Square Garden above it, so it can charge that amount, I guess.

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RRRICH
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Whenever I/we go on train trips and need an overnight stay someplace, the first chain I always check is Holiday Inn/Holiday Inn Express -- especially in a city we haven't been to before where the lcoal hotels are not familair to us.
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RR4me
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I like my cel phone, but it does have a power off feature, and it's easy to use. I have never felt the need to establish a facebook account, and if I did my kids would think I'm trying to act well under my age anyway (my friends know how to contact me, and I let new ones in on the numbers). It's always all about choices. As Forrest Gump said, "Stupid is as stupid does". I imagine one could have a perfectly decent Facebook page if one wanted to, that any employer could read without the author worrying. Just have to understand how pervasive and "unprivate" the web is. A...maniac, I love talking to the riff, but have a hard time putting up with the raff!
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amtraxmaniac
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When things get a little too entertaining, relief starts and ends with an X; XANAX. .5 mg's and I may as well be in my own private room. In fact, I'm on another planet. I don't have to pay $400 plus for a room.

--------------------
Patrick

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notelvis
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The last 'funky motel' I stayed in was along US 23 between Ashland, KY and South Portsmouth, KY (guess who was riding the Cardinal the next morning?).

It was an old roadside hotel that was undergoing renovation....they were doubling the room sizes by adding on to the back of the building.

So......I spent the night in a room that smelled of sawdust......where I could walk on into the new section to watch CSX freight trains roll by....and where there was no telephone because they hadn't finished re-wiring that part of the building yet.

They knocked $15.00 off the rate for not having the telephone.

I'd have paid $10.00 extra NOT to have had the phone to begin with.....I was on VACATION!

--------------------
David Pressley

Advocating for passenger trains since 1973!

Climbing toward 5,000 posts like the Southwest Chief ascending Raton Pass. Cautiously, not nearly as fast as in the old days, and hoping to avoid premature reroutes.

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George Harris
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quote:
Originally posted by sojourner:
OTOH, in some cities, the location of these isn't convenient. And in first-tier-tourist meccas, they aren't always so cheap! In NYC the one near Penn Station (called Hampton Inn Madison Square Garden, I believe, on W31), when I checked, wanted $320 for a weeknight in March! And I looked at the place, rooms are smaller and more cramped than a typical Hampton Inn (though breakfast room is nice enough) . . . but it's convenient, not just to Penn Station but to Madison Square Garden above it, so it can charge that amount, I guess.

My employer's policy used to be, and maybe still is, if going to New York City, stay in Newark and take the PATH trains in to the office.
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palmland
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Usually we stay with family in NJ, but a couple years ago we stayed in a 'real' hotel - not one of the cookie cutter chains when staying late in the city for the Westminster dog show at Madison Square Garden.

While on the modest side, it was very comfortable and best of all a pleasant walk to Penn Station (except when we did it in an ice storm). The Hotel Stanford has me on their mailing list and I just got an ad for a $99 rate Jan 14 through end of Feb. The hotel is located in what I guess you could call an Asian district but that made it all that more interesting.

It is located at 43 E. 42nd St. http://www.hotelstanford.com/

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