Auto Train or Bust

Ann and I were in Florida for a couple weeks and decided to take the Auto Train home instead of driving. The AMTRAK auto train runs from Sanford FL to Lorton VA and is a 17 hour trip. We were to arrive after 12:30 and before 3PM with a train departure of 5PM. We reserved a bedroom, complete with toilet and shower, paid for an SUV size car, and paid $95 extra for our car to be one of the first 30 off the train. With a 10 AM arrival in Lorton, we were sure to be home by noon!

Image courtesy of Wikipedia.

BUST!!! At 10PM the night before our train, I received notice that the train was cancelled due to equipment issues!!!!! Needless to say, my bubble was popped and depression nearly set in. After all, now we were looking at a two day drive instead of a leisurely train ride!

Even though we didn’t get the train ride, I thought you might be interested in pricing.

As I said, we reserved a room with two bunks, a chair and an included bathroom/shower. That was obviously extra cost. We had to pay a little extra since we had an SUV and we paid the $95 for early auto release. The total was $1,141.

When I calculated wear and tear on the SUV, food, lodging and gas for the drive, the total comes to almost $700.00 (wear and tear is the high cost of course). So, the actual cost is fairly steep if you include the extras as we did.

Image courtesy of Wikipedia.

I guess we’ll try it again next January when we sojourn to FL to get away from the Maryland cold. By the way, our average temperature in FL was about 80 deg. Golf and the pools were great distractions!!!!

David Chaffee

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