Friday, 3 August 2012

Dear Amtrak

Dear Amtrak,

Thank you so much for the brilliant trip so far from Vancouver to Sacramento, to travel this region by train has long been a dream of mine, so thank you for making it come true.


I do however have one small complaint ... I mean it's tiny in the scheme of things, but I just wanted to mention it to you because other passengers might be slighlty more put off by what happened than I was, and I know you'd want to fix this for them ...



You see it appears that you failed to book me a seat on the first leg of my trip.

I know, such a small detail, but I just wanted to raise it.


Please don't take this as a criticism in anyway, I realise that it must be incredibly difficult managing a complex passenger schedule like yours ... I mean it's not like you have a fixed network of railway routes and trains travelling the same route and stopping at the same stations every day is it? and even if you did, how are you to know whether a passenger wants to travel all the legs between their nominated start and destination points and not just some of them?


On that note, could I also mention that when I said in my email that I wished to take a bicycle with me, I actually meant all the way.  You see it appears that your bookings office staff managed to book my bicycle from Vancouver to Seattle (but not me) and booked me from Seattle to Salt Lake City (but not my bike).



Look I could go on ... I loved they way that the wi-fi connection was there ... but didn't actually ever work.  Though I've now read the fine print next to that prominent free wi-fi logo on your web page and I see that it only applies to a certain class of passengers on the train, which is fair enough ... I mean who offers free Wi-Fi nowadays? 
 

I appreciated the way your staff responded to the booking problems I had (it appears that more money can fix everything and I just love forking out extra money for something I thought I had already paid for).

I also loved the way that many announcements on the train were so quiet we all ended up just looking at each other asking "did anyone get that?". It was a great way to get to know your neighbours, and I didn't really want lunch anyway.

With service like yours,  it's not a question of "if" but "when" railways will return to being the dominant form of travel again ... I can't wait to see what joys I'll experience in the next leg of my trip ... assuming I'm booked on it.


Yours faithfully,

John

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