Amtrak partners with Google Transit

Posted on August 11, 2009

Travelers may now use Google Transit — Google’s public transportation trip planning function — to plan their journeys on Amtrak as five of the railroad’s routes were recently added to the Google Transit system.

"Google Transit offers Amtrak’s passengers a valuable travel planning tool while introducing rail travel to a whole new audience" said Matt Hardison, Amtrak’s chief of sales distribution and customer service.

Google Transit provides travelers public transportation connections when planning a trip in more than 400 cities. Through the Trip Planner, users receive step-by-step transit directions, details on transit stations in their area and schedules. By adding Amtrak to the mix, travelers now have expanded transportation options.

Plans call for all Amtrak routes across the country to eventually be available through Google Transit. The first five routes now available include:

* Empire Service (New York - Albany - Buffalo - Niagara Falls)
* Ethan Allen Express (New York - Albany - Rutland)
* Hiawatha Service (Chicago - Milwaukee)
* Pacific Surfliner (San Diego - Los Angeles - Santa Barbara - San Luis Obispo)
* San Joaquin (Oakland - Sacramento - Fresno - Bakersfield)

When queried, the Google Transit Trip Planner provides users with up to three different transit- and rail-based options to get to their destination. Included is the amount of time each option will take, the number and mode of transfers and walking directions from the train station to the destination.

If Amtrak is an option, a link to Amtrak.com will appear so users may make a train reservation. Street view imagery provides travelers with ground-level images of their route, in addition to a map. Query results also provide users information for transferring from Amtrak to the local transit system.

The Google Transit Trip Planner also provides users who request driving directions a detailed route which includes travel on Amtrak, if appropriate. Alongside the driving directions is a link offering public transportation as an alternative. In this way, travelers who may not have previously considered public transportation can investigate Amtrak as an option.

Google Transit is also accessible through any Java-enabled hand-held device, putting Amtrak schedules at users’ fingertips. Queries made on hand-held devices also include a link to Amtrak.com, allowing users to make a reservation. Further, the Trip Planner supports 40-plus languages and provides access for the visually impaired through an output that is compatible with screen readers. A tutorial of Google Transit is available at http://maps.google.com/help/maps/transit/.

In addition, Amtrak continues to use the funds it received from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to improve the service it provides. That includes using $400,000 of ARRA funds to automate the process of compiling electronic Amtrak schedules that can be shared with Google Transit.

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

Bombardier to supply 4 more trams to Australia

The order is valued at approximately $18 million and is an exercise of an option included in a contract signed in 2011.

Texas' DCTA receives grant for A-Train Rail Trail

Once complete, the Lewisville Hike and Bike trail will run from DCTA’s Hebron Station all the way to the Highland Village/Lewisville Lake Station. Construction on the last portion of the Lewisville Hike and Bike trail is expected to begin in early 2016.

Metra prepares for winter weather with switch covers, heaters

Additionally, agency is continuing to repair and replace railcar doors that are prone to fail in winter conditions.

Alstom to supply Citadis trams to Lyon, France

The order, worth over $21 million, represents the exercise of an option on a contract signed in 2011.

XpressWest chosen to build Las Vegas-to-L.A. high-speed rail

The initial phase of the XpressWest project, which will link Las Vegas to Victorville, Calif., will cost $8 billion.

See More News

Post a Comment

Post Comment

Comments (0)

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment



Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

LCT Magazine

Global Resource For Limousine and Bus Transportation

Please sign in or register to .    Close