Considering arranging a rail charter from Chicago to Reno

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Considering arranging a rail charter from Chicago to Reno

Post by caveatlector » Tue Mar 11, 2014 6:20 am

Hey folks,

This is a long term plan that I've been considering for the 2015 burn-- so I figured I'd start the ball rolling with a conversation here:

What are your general thoughts about a charter trip between Chicago and Reno before and after the burn? The idea would be to charter a rail car and baggage car through Amtrak or the 261 Rail Car Charter for 20 to 50 people. Essentially it would be a three day pre-party and a 3 day de-compression, using Chicago as the travel hub for folks in the east. In theory, the cost would be competitive to air travel, and come with far less cargo restrictions. We could then take the Burner Bus from Reno to the Playa or if there's enough of us, charter our own.

So. Good idea? Bad idea? Anyone know if anything like this kind of travel arrangement has ever been done? Do you think that there might be a demand for this kind of service? Do folks here have experience with rail charters? Anyone care for a mint?

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Re: Considering arranging a rail charter from Chicago to Ren

Post by trilobyte » Tue Mar 11, 2014 9:05 am

People travel to the event by rail every year, and I've seen posts from people who travel together, but I don't think there has ever been much interest or demand for booking as a group. At least not yet. That's understandable, as most people's travel dates and schedules will vary.

My guess would be to contact someone at the railroad to discuss rates, and see if there's a 'magic number' of passengers that, if booked as a group, unlocks some kind of discount or incentive for would-be travelers. Then repeat the process for the hotel(s) you're considering, as well as any shuttles or other aspects of the adventure that need to be sorted out. Once you've got some numbers and specific dates, you can start tossing the idea around in the local regional group for the city you're traveling from. You might find that there's a ton of interest - or you could find very little. Based on what your results are there, start connecting with other regional groups, use a map and aim for areas that are either adjacent to or that may travel through Chicago. Be careful to avoid crossing the line on commerce and advertising (for example, posting financial details on ePlaya would be a no, though you could discuss them via PM with interested parties).

It seems like a massive and risky undertaking, but if you could make it work it may be a lot of fun - good luck!

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Re: Considering arranging a rail charter from Chicago to Ren

Post by dragonpilot » Tue Mar 11, 2014 11:30 am

30 people sharing a rail car for 6 days?
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Re: Considering arranging a rail charter from Chicago to Ren

Post by chuckularone » Tue Mar 11, 2014 11:35 am

dragonpilot wrote:30 people sharing a rail car for 6 days?
It'll be fine on the trip out. On the trip back... Not so much. :-)
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Re: Considering arranging a rail charter from Chicago to Ren

Post by Eddie » Sun Jul 27, 2014 1:47 pm

charter should start further east, like NYC. A very large percentage of burners are here.

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Re: Considering arranging a rail charter from Chicago to Ren

Post by theCryptofishist » Sun Jul 27, 2014 3:56 pm

What's the price range?
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