Park Car on the Canadian

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Park Car on the Canadian

Postby marquisofmississauga » Thu Mar 10, 2016 9:28 pm

VIA has confirmed the rumours that the Park car on the Canadian is to become "semi-exclusive" (in their words) for the peak-season which starts in May. Only Prestige passengers will be admitted except for a brief time each evening other than the night of departure from Toronto and Vancouver. From my observations at the bon voyage the same cheap bubbly was served to Prestige passengers as to those in the regular sleepers, although the former had theirs in fluted glasses and the rest of us had plastic cups. Perhaps Prestige will get something better now that those of us in the cheap cabins are barred. For the fare charged I would expect Dom Perignon. There are usually two Sleeper Plus Class Skyline cars in the peak consists, so this will provide the only dome and lounge space.

This change will not be in effect in the off-peak season. I am assuming the reason is that there are no Sleeper Plus Class Skyline cars run in the off-peak runs.

Speaking of fares, the Prestige fare was raised at the beginning of the year from approximately $6500 (plus tax) to $6806. It will increase in June to $7700. That is for one or two people per cabin.

This notice has just recently appeared on VIA'S Website:

Important Note: during peak season (May to October) access to this car is limited to scheduled times for Sleeper Plus passengers. Starting May 1st 2016, the Prestige Park car may be accessed during the evenings from 19h00 until last call (22h30), with the exceptions of evenings upon departure from Toronto and Vancouver. *Scheduled access times are subject to change.
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby NS VIA FAN » Sat Mar 12, 2016 7:23 am

Makes perfect sense to me....VIA is just strengthening their product:

Paying $7000. for Prestige Class (where no discount is offered)…..why should I have to take my chances that a dome seat in the Park ‘might’ be available?

It’s not like the car has been completely cut off to Sleeper Plus passengers.Just travel off season or ride in the Park between 7 and 10:30pm when it is available to all.

Do you think that if you were staying in a Fairmont Room at the Royal York before your trip on the Canadian...you would be permitted access to the Gold Floor?

So if you want the amenities of VIA’s Prestige Class....pay for it.
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby marquisofmississauga » Sat Mar 12, 2016 1:18 pm

NS VIA FAN wrote:Do you think that if you were staying in a Fairmont Room at the Royal York before your trip on the Canadian...you would be permitted access to the Gold Floor?

So if you want the amenities of VIA’s Prestige Class....pay for it.


I always stay in the Gold section of Fairmont hotels and have done so most times right back to when CN Hotels started the concept of Entrée Gold. But I have never had to take out a mortgage to enjoy such luxury. :wink:

This is an understandable business decision by VIA, but it will be a shock to many regular sleeper passengers who, for the past 61 years, have had full access to the Park car.
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby jp1822 » Wed Mar 16, 2016 1:41 pm

Or paid for their May 2016 vacation in January 2016, when all printed materials on website and confirmation with reps revealed Park Car would still be available to Sleeper Plus passengers. I am more dismayed by the fact that they allowed no transition period for these types of bookings.

No doubt that Prestige Class is VIA's last ditch effort to keep the Canadian going. I have to wonder if additional Chateau cars may be converted.
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby marquisofmississauga » Thu Mar 17, 2016 7:31 am

marquisofmississauga wrote:...
Speaking of fares, the Prestige fare was raised at the beginning of the year from approximately $6500 (plus tax) to $6806. It will increase in June to $7700. That is for one or two people per cabin.
...


VIA has now increased the Prestige fare as of the beginning of May. The Sleeper Plus peak fares still start in June as in previous years. Also, I have noticed there are no off-peak fares which used to begin on the 22nd of October each year. So it appears that after the 1st of June the peak fares will apply year round. I hope the special offers and the Tuesday deals will continue. If not, I think it will be a rather empty train in winter.
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby bagofbobbish » Tue Apr 12, 2016 8:41 am

A friend at VIA told me the Park Car policy may be reconsidered if they get enough complaints. Email them here, VIA cares: customer_relations@viarail.ca
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby electricron » Tue Apr 12, 2016 2:35 pm

I hope they don't change the new policy, I like it, they should make it year aaround. After all, the Park car has sleeping berths in it, who wants others making noise in the dome above if you are trying to sleep below? There are other dome cars without sleeping berths. The Park car should be treated differently.
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby bagofbobbish » Wed Apr 13, 2016 9:29 am

Most people quite unhappy about the change. I don't care about the dome, but the rear of the Park Car should be unrestricted.
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby CarterB » Wed Apr 13, 2016 11:33 am

1st class Park car should be ALL and ONLY for 1st class ticketed passengers. There are other dome cars for coach passengers.
You pay HUGE extra fare/s to ride 1st Class, so it SHOULD avail such of their own exclusive use of the Park Car.
Bring back the Slumbercoaches!!
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby electricron » Wed Apr 13, 2016 11:38 am

CarterB wrote:1st class Park car should be ALL and ONLY for 1st class ticketed passengers. There are other dome cars for coach passengers.
You pay HUGE extra fare/s to ride 1st Class, so it SHOULD avail such of their own exclusive use of the Park Car.

I'll agree. The disagreement then becomes should all sleeper passengers be considered first class or not? Obviously, VIA has introduced a new "super" first class designation with their Prestige class. :)
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby bagofbobbish » Wed Apr 13, 2016 11:40 am

Carter the issue is not opening it up to coach passengers, but rather removing the restrictions VIA placed upon it just now where Sleeper Plus passengers can only access from 7:30-10:30pm when little to no scenery is visible. Only the Prestige Class passengers can use the Park Car at other times. Sleeper Plus used to have full access, and that should be restored.
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby CarterB » Wed Apr 13, 2016 12:48 pm

bagofbobbish wrote:Carter the issue is not opening it up to coach passengers, but rather removing the restrictions VIA placed upon it just now where Sleeper Plus passengers can only access from 7:30-10:30pm when little to no scenery is visible. Only the Prestige Class passengers can use the Park Car at other times. Sleeper Plus used to have full access, and that should be restored.

Bago....I misunderstood the Sleeper Plus...yes I agree. Coach passengers...No.
Bring back the Slumbercoaches!!
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby bagofbobbish » Wed Apr 13, 2016 2:40 pm

Agreed. Send VIA an email asking them to rescind the change: customer_relations@viarail.ca
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby marquisofmississauga » Thu Apr 14, 2016 8:59 am

electricron wrote:I hope they don't change the new policy, I like it, they should make it year aaround. After all, the Park car has sleeping berths in it, who wants others making noise in the dome above if you are trying to sleep below? There are other dome cars without sleeping berths. The Park car should be treated differently.


Noise from the dome is not an issue to those trying to sleep in the rooms. The dome is above the bar (formerly known as the Mural Lounge and still known as that in the non-Prestige Park cars) not above any of the rooms. I have often occupied drawing room "A" in the Park car. That is/was the room closest to the centre of the car. Any noise heard was from people returning to their sleepers and talking or laughing as they go along the corridor.
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Re: Park Car on the Canadian

Postby electricron » Thu Apr 14, 2016 10:14 am

marquisofmississauga wrote:Noise from the dome is not an issue to those trying to sleep in the rooms. The dome is above the bar (formerly known as the Mural Lounge and still known as that in the non-Prestige Park cars) not above any of the rooms. I have often occupied drawing room "A" in the Park car. That is/was the room closest to the centre of the car. Any noise heard was from people returning to their sleepers and talking or laughing as they go along the corridor.


Noise is still noise. It's not so much where it comes from but when it comes! Noise after 10:30 pm wouldn't be wanted by many no matter which car you are on the train. Having a lounge serving alcoholic beverages in a sleeping car is not my idea quiet place.
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