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Train from New York to Buffalo rather than flying?

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Train from New York to Buffalo rather than flying?


We are looking into whether to take the train from NY to Buffalo and back a week later, understand it is 8 hrs?

Are we mad? We are also looking at flying but my husbands not great with flying in smallish planes!

Are the trains fairly comfy and is there any scenery to take in?

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1. Re: Train from New York to Buffalo rather than flying?

You are mad! The train is awful and will waste a day in each direction. They usually come from Canada and can get held up at the border. The planes are not small.


is a great airline with mostly new planes and the cost is not much if you book far enough in advance and pick the right flights. Look on


for all the plane options.

New York, NY
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2. Re: Train from New York to Buffalo rather than flying?

I'd second that. JetBlue does not fly any small planes; I think it's smallest plane has 100 seats. Fares start at $85 each way. Amtrak is NOT romantic, is often late, and I'd only take it for trips under 4 hours.

Portland, Maine
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3. Re: Train from New York to Buffalo rather than flying?

It's a nice train trip with great views along the Hudson as far as Albany, but you're only one third of the way there when you get to Albany. Border holdups won't impact you if you're traveling from New York to Buffalo but will on some return trains depending on whether they originate in Niagara Falls or Toronto.

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4. Re: Train from New York to Buffalo rather than flying?

I've done this trip as far as Rochester. If you realize how long it it is and like trains then go for it. I liked not having to worry about TSA. I go on line, then read my book, I slept a bit, I enjoyed the Hudson valley. I chatted with my neighbor. Hey, a nice day.


New York NY
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5. Re: Train from New York to Buffalo rather than flying?

The train is painfully slow. It is always delayed and you'll almost always arrive at least an hour late.

The scenery between New York and Albany-Rensselaer is stunning - beautiful. West of Albany is painfully boring and dull. The semi-abandoned rail yards around Syracuse are enough to make you want to cry. By Syracuse, the bathrooms are usually stopped up and smelly.

jetBlue flies full size Airbus A320 jet aircraft and beautiful new Embraer E190 jet aircraft with 100 seats. These aren't small planes.

Delta flies some smaller regional jets - jetBlue has full size planes.

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6. Re: Train from New York to Buffalo rather than flying?

Not sure I can add any major new information here, but here's my perspective, FWIW. My wife, daughter and I once made the trip to & from Buffalo by Amtrak (this was about 4-5 years ago, but I don't think anything much has changed).

As others have noted, the scenery from NYC to Albany is great. After Albany, the ride is less scenic AND Amtrak doesn't control the tracks -- they use tracks owned by freight railroads. This difference is critical, as Amtrak has to take orders from the freight carriers who, understandably, give priority to their own trains. This creates delays, as Amtrak has to slow down to accommodate freight traffic. On the Buffalo to NYC trip, border delays (for trains coming from Canada) are an additional problem.

Having said that, I feel obligated to point out that, while often slow and unpredictable, the trip is quite comfortable. Yes, the condition of the restrooms may deteriorate toward the end of the trip, and the snack bar will probably run out of some items. Still, my wife loves the train and would gladly use Amtrak for this trip again (schedule permitting, of course). I'm less enthusiastic, but I wouldn't completely rule it out -- just be prepared for delays.

One other issue to deal with: the Amtrak station in Buffalo is in a suburban area with very limited services available (i.e., there was no car rental desk, etc.). We needed a car, so we took a taxi to the airport (which, fortunately, isn't terribly far away) and rented a car there. If you want to do this, get phone numbers for some local taxi companies before you travel. You can't count on finding a cab at the station.

7. Re: Train from New York to Buffalo rather than flying?

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