Airlines & Airports
Amtrak Vacations Adds Canadian Itineraries
The Yankee Leisure Group (YLG), operators of Amtrak Vacations, Unique Rail Journeys and Yankee Holidays, continues to grow its product line through partnerships. The 2015 Unique Rail Journeys brochure came out with several European and Asian rail vacations based on its partnership with the U.K.’s Great Rail Journeys and now YLB is partnering with VIA Rail Canada.
“With our Amtrak Vacations brand, now our travel agent partners can not only connect from any of the 500 Amtrak stations across the United States to these new VIA Rail packages, but also earn commission by booking VIA through us,” said Frank Marini, president of YLG.
“These new itineraries not only provide great value but also a unique opportunity to combine our network with Amtrak’s to offer two nation rail vacations in one simple transaction,” said Martin Landry, chief commercial officer of VIA Rail Canada. The new itineraries operate most days and in any direction throughout the year. The packages offer different levels of accommodation and at different price points, both onboard VIA’s trains and as well as in hotels.
Just last fall, VIA Rail VIA Rail completed the refurbishment of all 26 of its new Business Class Cars as part of an overall upgrade of its business class service, offering more spacious cars, improved lounges, improved menus and more personalized service. VIA Rail’s Prestige Class includes a dedicated concierge; cabins that are 50 percent larger than the previous cabin for two in Sleeper Plus class; windows that are 60 percent larger than the window in the Sleeper Plus cabin for two; private washrooms with showers; flat-screen TV with video selection; minibar stocked with a selection of beverages and more.
The new packages offer some of Canada’s most legendary journeys including the Rockies and a trans-Canada journey, plus an interesting combination of the two countries’ capital cities. Over the last decade, the Canadian Rockies have become the world’s top rail experience and now, Amtrak Vacations can offer a Canadian Rockies package that visits Vancouver, Victoria, Jasper, Lake Louise, Banff and Calgary with calls at such popular areas as Stanley Park, Gastown and Granville Island as well as Jasper and Banff, Medicine Lake, the Athabasca Glacier and the Columbia Ice Fields.
The Cross Canada vacation package begins in Toronto and Niagara Falls before departing on The Canadian for a three night journey to the Rockies and the mountain towns of Jasper and Banff, before heading to Vancouver where passengers can choose to extend their stay and visit Victoria or any of the cities that Amtrak services in the U.S.
The Capitol to Capitol program begins in Toronto and goes to Niagara Falls before heading to Ottawa, the capital of Canada, where passengers will see Parliament Hill, the National Gallery of Canada and the Prime Minister’s residence. From there, travelers will journey to Montreal before departing for New York City, traveling through Philadelphia and to Washington, D.C.
Amtrak Vacations offers several types of rail vacation packages including fully-escorted and independent rail journeys, rail and sail vacations, family adventures, rail getaways and special programs. The packages include hotel and on-board accommodations, sightseeing tours, experiences and entertainment.
Between them, Amtrak Vacations and Yankee Holidays offer more than 300 packages to more than 40 destinations in North America The fact that travelers can now begin or end their Canadian rail trip in any Amtrak station around the United States, or fly to a particular city to begin their rail journey, gives these programs an extra layer of convenience.
More by James Ruggia
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