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Formytinkerbelle

Amtrak from Richmond, VA to Penn Station.

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We were planning on doing the train same day but have been told now that there can be major delays going into Penn Station.  If we have an arrival time of 1215 for a cruise that leaves at 4, is that really cutting it too close?  I tried to find online about delays and searched average times and it looked like the average was 15 minutes which wouldnt be bad at all.  So is the Amtrak reliable or not?  Thanks in advance for advice.  Going into NYC the day before isnt an option because of child care.  Dont want to fly but if it's that bad to ride the train then we would consider it.

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When are you traveling? NE Regional? You're leaving Richmond around 6:00 a.m.?

 

I take the NE Regional all the time from Washington to NYP. There are occasional delays, but rarely a real problem. The issue from Richmond is that there are fewer trains, and less slack in the system. And does the ship leave at 4, or all aboard is at 4?  All aboard is generally 90 minutes before departure, so yeah, that would be cutting it closer than I'd want to do. But 3:45  to allow for delays, isn't too bad.

 

Tough call. You could just as easily have issues with a flight. The only other real option would be to drive to DC (late night to "hopefully" avoid traffic) and catch an early train from there.

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I would never travel Amtrak the day of a cruise. Love riding the train but have had many late arrivals. You would have to be on board the ship by 3pm. By the time you exit Penn Station get your transportation to the port it will be around 1245pm. This gives you a slim 2hrs. For any delays, too close for me.

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I would not take Amtrak the same day.  Stuff goes into the toilet really fast.....there are delays EVERY day....not necessarily cancellations but no.  Never the same day.

 

Things could be fine every day the week you're traveling.  BUT the DAY you travel...one downed power line, or catenary issues, or a stuck drawbridge or broken down train and you're screwed.  

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While Amtrak does have some issues with delays, they rarely happen on the Northeast Corridor which is the rail line you'll be traveling on. Most of Amtrak's delays are on the other lines throughout the US that are owned by separate freight rail companys-- Amtrak owns and controls the Northeast Corridor. 

 

Its cutting it a little close but you shouldnt have that much of an issue. You could also look at switching trains in Washington Union Station to one of the Acelas. They are only marginally faster than the regionals but they also have priority if theres a delay. 

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While Amtrak does have some issues with delays, they rarely happen on the Northeast Corridor which is the rail line you'll be traveling on. Most of Amtrak's delays are on the other lines throughout the US that are owned by separate freight rail companys-- Amtrak owns and controls the Northeast Corridor. 

 

Its cutting it a little close but you shouldnt have that much of an issue. You could also look at switching trains in Washington Union Station to one of the Acelas. They are only marginally faster than the regionals but they also have priority if theres a delay. 

 

The Richmond to Washington part of the trip is on tracks owned by a freight railroad, Norfolk Southern. They are notorious for delaying Amtrak trains behind their freight trains.

 

One should not risk taking Amtrak from Richmond the same day

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18 minutes ago, Charles4515 said:

 

The Richmond to Washington part of the trip is on tracks owned by a freight railroad, Norfolk Southern. They are notorious for delaying Amtrak trains behind their freight trains.

 

One should not risk taking Amtrak from Richmond the same day

Minor correction, the freight line is owned by CSX, not Norfolk Southern...But totally agree, cutting arrival too close for comfort.

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Posted (edited)
22 minutes ago, tompeter said:

Minor correction, the freight line is owned by CSX, not Norfolk Southern...But totally agree, cutting arrival too close for comfort.

 

Yes, CSX. Had a minor brain flip. Some trains south of DC run on NS tracks but the trains to Richmond run on CSX.

Edited by Charles4515

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And today, a freight train (I think) derailed near NYP causing 30+ minute delays on trains into and out of NY Penn.

 

So, Ship Happens.

 

Come in a day early

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I agree with the others. I have been brought up on trains(my Father worked for the railroads) but would always arrive the day before as we are doing in May. Going home different story.

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A cruise that “leaves at 4” has to be boarded by 2:30 or 3:00 - latest.  A 12:15 arrival time leaves just over two hours to get off the train, up to street level (just this one step requires 15 minutes, minimum, with crowded platform and narrow stairs/escalator), get through station, get taxi or Uber, get through jammed midday/midtown streets to cruise terminal. You really need to allow an hour from actual arrival time at Penn Station to get off the train and to the cruise terminal.

 

While a two hour (or more) delay is not a certainty, it is enough of possibility to make that train idea too risky.  Depending upon season, flight delays also need to be considered.  While not perhaps a DESIRED option, flying or training up the day before IS, in fact, AN option.  Think about it.

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I'm taking the train from Rocky Mount in two weeks.  It seems to be 1-2 hours late arriving into Penn Station.  I love this website to view historical data.

 

I'm leaving the day before and booking a night at an Airbnb.

 

https://asm.transitdocs.com/

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