Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee

A Method to the Madness

A bit more experimentation with the Amtrak web site shows that they do indeed have a semi-blackout on certain dates around Christmas and New Year's Day — although apparently not on Christmas Day itself. The money fares are the same, but the value of Amtrak Guest Rewards points changes from the usual amount (about 2.7¢ per AGR point, so for example a $2,170 fare for two people in a Superliner Bedroom from New Orleans to Los Angeles would cost around 80,000 AGR points) to only about one-third that amount, or 0.9¢ per point. Even though the $2,170 fare doesn't change, the cost in points becomes roughly 3x more to travel on a blackout date.

In other words, this is not a bug; it's a feature. Amtrak doesn't really want people redeeming AGR points on certain holidays, presumably because they figure they can sell the travel for cash, but rather than flat-out prohibiting it, they just triple the number of points it takes to buy the fare to discourage points use.

I am now further experimenting with different routes we could take home, and maybe just buying the semi-blacked-out leg. It would cost more money now and spend fewer points, but they don't expire and we are hoping to go to Chicago for next year's Worldcon by train, so maybe the points we don't spend now we can use next year.
Tags: amtrak, trains, worldcon

Recent Posts from This Journal

  • Train Trip Houskeeping

    While reviewing the Worldcon Train Trip reservations (six reservations, seven total one-way legs) and looking through my Amtrak account, I realized…

  • The Hat Pack

    The wire through the brim of my Jacaru Australia hat (pictured in the user icon) broke a few days ago, and while it's not that noticeable (it's at…

  • Circle Completed

    This afternoon I decided to try to book the final leg of the Amtrak Circle Trip to Worldcon, that being the Los Angeles - San Jose run on New Year's…

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
  • 1 comment