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Amtrak is a railroad service that carries passengers all around the United States.
All about Amtrak
Amtrak is a train company that takes customers on medium and long distance routes around the United States. It's partially government funded, although the model it operates on it for business, as are its managing policies. The service hosts over 30 million passengers per year and 20,000 employees.
The name Amtrak comes from a combinatino of "America" and "trak", a modified spelling of "track." Their tracks can take you to over 500 destinations, which are mostly in the United States (it serves 46 states), with a few in Canada as well (where it exists in three different provinces).
The history of Amtrak
Although it seemed like passenger train travel might be coming to an end in the United States in the late 1960s, the government stepped in to help save the passenger train. There were various laws created to help maintain the industry. One of the things that was created out of this movement was the creation of a public-private company that would operate passenger trains between cities.
This was what became Amtrak, although its original name was Railpax. Any railroad that carried passengers between cities was allowed to join. At the time, there were 26 railroads that offered the service, and 20 of them decided they wanted to join.
Many expected Amtrak to disappear, but it's still going strong today! The only two of the contiguous states that it's not in are South Dakota and Wyoming.
What kinds of services does Amtrak offer?
Traveling by train is a little bit different than other forms of transportation, and Amtrak splits up their offerings into four different classes of service. Let's talk a bit about what each one is like!
First Class has the largest seats and is located in a separate car from the other classes. You'll get a complimentary meal, drink, newspaper, and hot towel. When you're in the station, you'll be granted access to the ClubAcela lounges.
Sleeper Service is for passengers who are traveling on long distance routes. The price of a sleeper includes meals, too, plus attendant service and beverages, though there are different sizes of rooms available.
Business Class is offered on both short and long distance trains. Passengers get a free newspaper and complimentary non-alcoholic drinks.
Coach Class is standard service, and all seats include reclining features, folding trays, personal lights, and power outlets.
Not all the classes are offered on every train.