No Flight Plan Needed

Reprinted from PN December 2012

High-speed trains and accessible buses give airlines competition in some parts of the U.S.

View Forum | Print Article | Font Size + / - | Back

It’s not really necessary to deal with high airfares and crowded airports to get around in the Northeast corridor. There are some great alternatives.

Amtrak’s high-speed Acela trains are beginning to eat away at airlines’ volume of Northeast travelers connecting Washington, Baltimore, Philadelphia, New York, and Boston.

Wheelchair users who travel via Amtrak can receive boarding help.

Frequent flight delays and slow airport security along with Amtrak’s convenient online ticketing and work-station amenities have  reportedly contributed to the shift in travel preference.

Amtrak offers boarding and detraining assistance on its high platforms, low-level platforms, and bi-level trains to passengers using wheeled mobility devices. Passengers in wheelchairs may remain in their chairs for the ride or move to an accessible seat and stow their wheelchair nearby.

Accessible seats are  available on coach, business class, and first-class cars.

BoltBus and Megabus, two curbside services in the Northeast, offer the same Wi-Fi amenities as Amtrak with much lower fares.

The buses make the New York-to-Washington trip in four and a half hours with tickets ranging from $1 to $40. Amtrak’s Acela trains make the same trip in two hours and 45 minutes but with fares ranging from $154 to $351.

According to the BoltBus website, special needs as chosen by the passenger when purchasing a ticket online will be accommodated. Special needs must be specified when purchasing the ticket as every bus is not equipped with necessary accommodations such as wheelchair lifts.

Research suggests BoltBus and MegaBus are now eating into Amtrak’s market share. According to a study at DePaul University in Chicago, 34% of bus riders said they would have taken Amtrak if not for the bus.

BoltBus now operates in the Northeast and Pacific Northwest.

For more information, visit, or


PN and PVA do not endorse products or servicees. The preceding descriptions are for information only.


To order the December 2012 PN, Click Here.
To Subscribe, Click Here.

Article Forum

PN Forum discussions are intended to provide a place for free-flowing exchange of information, opinions, and comments and are designed to provide an enjoyable and informative expression for all participants.
Please review our Forum Rules for complete details.

Login with username and password (Forgot Password?)
New Post

No Flight Plan Needed


Be the first to comment on this article.
(Register or login to add comments.)