Via Rail Canada (Canada) Phone Number



1-888-842-7245 for General Information and Reservations.

Phone Number

1-800-681-2561Review Needed Please Comment


 out of   based on 25 reviews.
Sort by:  Newest  Most Viewed  Oldest
Date Rating Comment
8/6/2013 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - my family and I just recently took a trip from
my family and I just recently took a trip from Montreal to Oshawa on the 27th of July.I want to commend the staff on the train(61),due to its tardiness we were going to miss our train in Kingston,instead they allowed us to stay on the train which headed to rouge hill in scar.then,they got us home by taxi,which VIA picked up the tab....'VIA RAIL' you showed class.thank you so much for making our via rail experience a very pleasurable one.

TonyRead More
1/14/2013 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - So once again Via Rail is having their 50% off
So once again Via Rail is having their 50% off sale. So I tried to book a ticket online and low and behold, it asked for me to pay right away. The trip is for this coming May. Like, no thanks, I don't give out my personal information like bank numbers online. I finally got a reply back today. The lady, replied back through email and told me that they haven't had the book now pay later feature for a couple years. Are you kidding me? So now I have to either wait in hopes of catching another 50% off sale and they don't happen that often. Or I have to pay around 500$ round trip. Not my fault I work at a job that pays in one lump sum every month. I wish they brought back the book now pay later feature. Some people live in towns where the train station doesn't open often. Am definitely not happy with the level of service as it took 5 days to receive a reply from customer relations.

JocelynRead More
10/10/2012 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - I have a disability and, at one point, used to get
I have a disability and, at one point, used to get great customer service from Via.

For the last two years it's been an absolute nightmare. My biggest challenge not only comes from the changes to the train schedule, but also from the changes to the ticketing system and the renovations being made to Union Station in Toronto. They're taking accessibility away.

Wheelchair users can't buy a ticket online. They must phone in, have a credit card to pay for the ticket right away, and then go into the station ahead of time to pick up their ticket.

Why would disabled passengers be denied the opportunity to pay for their ticket using their debit card when this option exists for all other passengers (who would likely avoid buying a ticket over the phone because they know they'd have to sit on hold for an unacceptably long period of time)? Also, did Via not stop to think that many people who are disabled, can no longer work and therefore can no longer qualify to get a credit card?

Also, did they not stop to think that those who have a disability have a lot harder time getting around (to make that extra trip into a station to pick up a ticket) than a non-disabled passenger would?

I see other passengers now have a few new "convenient" options to buy their ticket and prove it to the train personnel. They can get an e-voucher that can be printed and then scanned under a self-service kiosk at the station to print a hard copy of their ticket. I also see people displaying something on their smart phone to prove they bought a ticket. Disabled passengers would greatly benefit from these convenient options but, instead when the changes were made to provide more convenience to the majority of passengers, the rules for the disabled have become much more strict, much less convenient, very stressful, and almost impossible to accommodate. What ever happened to basic human rights? The Ontario Human Rights Code and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms state that people with disabilities must be accommodated.

On the train you rarely see the train personnel anymore. This is a huge problem when a wheelchair must be tied to the floor of the train by law, and there's no alert button to get the attention of someone to untie you, if you need to go to the washroom. One time I got so desperate that I used my cell phone and paid for a long-distance phone call to call the Kingston Train Station. I asked the Kingston station staff to call the personnel on board the train and ask them to untie me, so I could go to the washroom.

If I had the guts I'd let the accident happen on the floor, but that would be too humiliating (and uncomfortable). Besides, I was brought up to be more dignified than that.

Many times I've tried to get an alert button added near the tie-down section so wheelchair users don't have to go to such extremes to go to the toilet however the answer has always been, "we're working on it." They've been working on it for more than 3 years and it's still not fixed so, whenever possible, I avoid taking the train.

At Union Station the nightmare is even worse. They're doing major renovations in that station so this has resulted in the removal of the 2 accessible washrooms that were on the departures level. Now the only accessible washroom left (on the 2 floors that are considered to be Via Rail property) is in the Via One (1st class) lounge on the upper level (off Front St.). This poses a huge dilemma to those who use Wheel-Trans because it can no longer can stop on Front St. because of construction. This means that, when a wheelchair passenger is dropped off on Bay St, we're automatically at the lower level of Union Station and will have to contend with ramps and, for those who are walking with difficulty, a very long walk.

After we're dropped off we can wend our way through the GO Concourse level and take an elevator up to the Departures level, but there's no way we can get up the steep ramp inside to get to the ticket counter level or the one remaining accessible washroom in the Via One lounge.

Even that newly built accessible washroom in the lounge was built with major problems. In Feb 2012, when the lounge was first opened and the other washrooms were closed, I discovered it was built with a very heavy door-closure hinge that weighed 20 pounds. I got trapped in there once and had to call the Kingston Station (to get them to call Union Station and ask for someone to let me out), so I took my luggage scale with me the next time and weighed it. I could not open that door no matter how hard I tried because... shock of shocks, I'm disabled.

After 6 months of intense lobbying, and enduring listening to lots of blame games from Customer Service about who owns the station and who is, or isn't, responsible to fix it, Via finally had a power door opener added.

I don't get it. Ontario is supposed to be becoming more accessible, not less. And yet these things are a nightmare. I hate having to fight for this very important thing called dignity every time I take the train.

Via needs to pull up their socks or, one day, they'll face some major challenges through either the Canadian Transportation Agency and/or the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

For now I have better things to do with my time, like... AVOID TAKING THE TRAIN.

Louise (aka WheelchairDemon)Read More
6/11/2012 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - I travelled from Toronto to Ottawa on January 13,
I travelled from Toronto to Ottawa on January 13, returned on January 15, 2012. Unfortunately, both trips were delayed for nearly 2 hours each way. The travellers were advised that we would be granted 50% off. When I did return, I contacted Via Rail and it was confirmed by a courteous representative named Chris that a $90 credit would be granted and he had inquired if I was a Via Preference member. I confirmed and he suggested that the points could be applied against that account.

Now planning another trip to Montreal, I have contacted the 888-Via-rail office and spoke with a courteous young lady named Serina who assisted me as best as she could to confirm that I had to travel by June 30th. My travel plans were for July 6th and she stated that Via could extend the credit for one additional month, if needed. My concern was that I could Not apply the points that were generously offered to me for my next trip, the total was insufficient....I needed nearly twice the amount for a one way travel.
She referred me to Customer Relations (800-681-2361) in order to escalate my concerns. Unfortunately, there was a lack of customer service and a very defensive customer relations 'supervisor' at the other end of the line who failed not to take my call personally instead of Hearing the point that I, as a paying customer, was making -> We should be advised of the implications of transferring cash credit to Via Preference points. <-

Nothing is more frustrating than attempting to express a concern to Via (or any organisation's) Customer Relations and having someone react defensively, when there was absolutely no need to. When asked to escalate, instead of making the effort to HeAr what was being told to him, I was advised that I was speaking to the Supervisor and there is No One else to escalate my concern with. This is what Via Rail considers Customer Relations?

I would prefer not to have to go to the Toronto Star Probe with concern. All I am suggesting is Full Disclosure concerning how Via Preference points can and can not be applied, when cash credit is involved. I would have been able to make a concerned decision at the time of issue.

AnitaRead More
12/22/2011 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - I am a seasoned traveler, accumulating
I am a seasoned traveler, accumulating 60,000-70,000 Aeroplan miles a year. I have also traveled numerous time on trains in Japan and Europe. I always flew in Canada before, but recently being coerced by a colleague of mine, I decided to give the underdog a chance and purchased a return Toronto - Montreal business class fare on VIA RAIL. The trip to Montreal was passable, a French Canadian crew was full of joie de vivre, provided adequate service, and the car was half empty. It was too warm for me in the car, and the entire trip lasted too long, 5 hours and 42 minutes, so a short winter day was over before we got to Montreal. I did use the Wi-Fi, and managed to accomplish quite a bit of work.
The return trip was a markedly worse experience. It began with a young lad by the name of Danny who did an excellent job ignoring me and my question about the whereabouts of the line up for business class passengers. Have you had that experience where you wonder if you really exist, just because someone else does not respond to your voice or even touch? Once on board of the train, a surly looking attendant did not allow me to use the luggage shelves and instead instructed me to take my luggage with me, so I can put it in the overhead compartment. The reason being they expect many pieces of luggage later. I guess my luggage did not factor on her projections.
During the beverage service my order was screwed up, and when I mentioned that to the attendant, she did not correct her mistake. Instead she ignored me for the rest of the trip.

I am 6'1", 200 lb, next to me was a gentlemen, who was probably 6'2", 240 lb. Both of us had our laptops out, neither of us could use the table for our laptops, because there was not enough elbow room. Besides being narrow, the chairs are extremely uncomfortable. The entire interior looks like was designed in the sixties, and it was never upgraded since.

The washroom did not have paper towels within the first hour of the trip.

The temperature in the car was normal initially, but within two hours of the trip it became unbearable. Once the meal service was over, there was no other service, not even drinking water.

So this is the business class comfort on board of VIA RAIL: lack of service, heat, lack of personal space, dated interior. I leave the best for last.

The Canadian Rail Operating Rules prescribe that Engine Whistle Signals are used at public crossings at grade: Trains exceeding 44 MPH must sound whistle signal 1/4 mile before the crossing, to be prolonged or repeated, until the crossing is fully occupied.
There are many, many, many railway crossings between Montreal and Toronto. So many in fact, that the whistling goes virtually non-stop until the train hits Oshawa. Of course, different sounds affect people differently. For me personally, this was a sheer torture. Maybe, the whistling is not as noticeable in other cars, but the business class is in car no.1 and it is right behind the engine.

The bottom line: this was one and only attempt to use VIA RAIL as transportation within Canada. I am in Sales, and therefore I put a lot of emphasis on a value proposition of any offering. I found none in the VIA RAIL's offering. It is definitely not cost-effective enough to make it a plausible alternative to the airlines, and the level of comfort borders on unbearable, while the unpleasant experience lasts much longer when compared to a flight.

Just like the previous postings before, here's my caution to business people, who plan to leverage the Wi-Fi access to make use of the time in transit, it is better to read a paper for an hour on a flight, than have a network connection on VIA RAIL for 5 hours.

HerenowRead More
5/30/2011 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - Via Rail: The Canadian: An inhumane way to
Via Rail: The Canadian: An inhumane way to travel
Toronto to Vancouver on Via Rail.

This trip is antiquated, ill-run exercise in frustration. What Via advertises and what you get are two very different things. They promise a relaxed, luxury vacation and what you get more often than not is a poorly-organized, rarely-on-schedule, fly-by-the-seat-of-their-pants, hope-for-the-best, but-promise-nothing trip into frustration. What Via Rail doesn’t tell you is that this trip is not centred around passenger comfort or convenience, for which passengers pay a pretty penny, but the freight train schedules. Like a slow death over several days, be prepared to sit 20, 30, 60 minutes at a time several times a day waiting for a freight train to pass you. Or you can get behind a slow moving freight train and crawl for hours at a time. Then when you finally reach a scheduled stop, you will be either too late to see anything or hurried on and off the train, so Via can make up the time. For people who have saved their money and vacation time, it is very disappointing. A quick check of the comment book in Edmonton will assure you that this is not a rare occurrence, but rather the norm.
Don’t bother trying to make any connections such as limo pickup, ferry, airplane or family visits. The schedule is too variable and rarely accurate.We did not make a single scheduled stop, COMING OR GOING, that was on time.
The problem is that despite the fact that Via has padded this schedule considerably to account for frequents delays, they are still constantly behind time. The result is scheduled stops that are whittled down to a few minutes and constantly disappointed passengers. Despite these time grabs, the train continues to lose more time each day until finally you arrive at your destination. We were ten hours late going to Vancouver and two and a half hours late returning. Many passengers were terribly disappointed and said they would never have taken the train had they known that most of their free time was spent sitting idly on the side of the tracks, inside the train, waiting for yet another freight train to pass. They felt cheated and angry.

The first day we waited two hours for a Via train to take us to our connection in Toronto. Finally, we arranged our own limo because we were afraid the timing was getting too tight. In the end, after we complained, Via did pay for the limo, but if we had wanted to go by car, we would have chosen that in the first place and not sat stressing for two hours in a train station. Not a good start to the trip.

We boarded the Canadian in Toronto on a cool spring night in 2011.

The train doesn’t look any different than it did when we took it the first and only other time, twenty-five years ago. Luxury? Not really. Just basic. A tiny bathroom-sized cabin with a toilet but no shower, small bar car, small dining room where you wait in line for breakfast (thankfully, lunch and dinner is reserved seating), and a 24 seat panoramic car where you often jostle for a seat. The décor is dated, communications systems broken half the time, and the arrival/departure times are guesses at best. They did put some cozy new duvets on the bed and called it “revamped.” Food was decent, but all desserts pre-packed, never freshly made.

Day One:
We sat waiting for FOUR hours in a little Ontario town with no air conditioning or power while they fiddled with the train. We were told that the problem was that they were making money towing two repaired train cars back from Montreal to BC and although they were causing the train to malfunction, they were not allowed to remove them. Profits first. They had to tow them all the way to BC. People were sweating and looking ill. Via did not feel any need to let us know what was going on. I think they only finally turned the power on because of fear of someone dropping dead of heat exhaustion.

Warning****NO WI-FI anywhere on this trip except in the station at Winnipeg, Jasper and Edmonton and little, if any phone service. Why, when even cruise ships offer these services? Probably money. No television either. No surprise there, but a little annoying when major news happened and we couldn’t even get a newspaper.

Day Two:
We got into Winnipeg 2 hours late because of the previous day, so tours were cancelled, disappointing many people, particularly a large group of tourists from England who were shocked by the poor organization of the trip, but we had to leave early to make up the time we lost. We missed a visit with friends, but weren’t too worried as we thought we could do it on the way back. (More about that later) Everyone hurried back to the train only to be told that there was another EIGHT-hour delay due to a derailment and we would be sitting there until further notice. (Too late to take tours and we were forced to sit inside the train to pass the time.)
PS: We never actually saw this derailment when we later passed the spot and many other trains passed us as we sat waiting, so there was some speculation that there was a different reason for our delay. Who knows? By this point, we didn’t doubt anything. Ill-treatment and lack of information tends to breed suspicion.
While stuck in Winnipeg, I contacted customer service at Via Rail as well as spoke to a customer service person in the station and was basically told; they don’t care about our inconvenience. If the train is more than 12 hours late, they will give you a COUPON toward further travel, (like that’s EVER going to happen,) but no refund. They said if I wasn’t happy, I was welcome to write whatever I wanted on the Internet, which I informed them I would. I want to save others from such a rude awakening on what is supposed to be a “luxury” trip of a lifetime. At almost $700/night/couple, it is poor value for the money. They get away with it because no one bothers to complain and save others from the same fate.
At this time we considered getting off the train and catching an airplane, which we should have done, but we were convinced otherwise by employees who insisted, not only would we be fine, but we would probably end up in Vancouver on time. Big Mistake!!! Take it from me, don’t bother asking about the schedule, you will never get a straight answer.

Day Three:
Woke to find we were now TWELVE HOURS late because while we sat waiting in Winnipeg, the snowstorm that everyone knew was coming, finally caught up with us. All night long we would go for twenty minutes and stop for half an hour. It wasn’t much better through the prairies all day as we often crawled at a snail’s pace. I never did find out why that was, but we no made up time at all.
But the best thing was that because we were supposed to be in Jasper for lunch and we were stuck on the train, they offered us “brunch” instead from 7 am until 1:30 pm. You could only eat once until dinner. You could snack on a few high-calory stale donuts in between if you were hungry, but that was it. The fact that we were stuck on the train all day and had no other dining options did not seem to occur to them.
However, there were no further breakdowns or major problems and everyone were grateful for that. We remained TWELVE hours behind schedule and everyone was very upset about missed connections and holiday plans.
Made it to Edmonton at supper hour instead of breakfast, Jasper at 11pm. Once again, the English tour missed their buses and tours for the day, but much to their relief, got off the train to continue their holiday by bus. There were more than a few jealous passengers who watched them go. As for us, this was to be a romantic cross-Canada vacation to see the Rocky mountains. Would have been nice, but since we arrived so late, we saw NOTHING. Woke up in Kamloops the next morning, with the best views all behind us.
They did add a more modern and updated viewing car to the train in Edmonton; something that did not look like it came from the 1950’s. It was nice and spacious and made me wonder why we didn’t have it all along. Not much use during Jasper and the spectacular Rockies, however, due to the altered schedule, it was dark.

Day Four:
Well, we should have been in Vancouver at 9 am in the morning. Because of delays, they told us it would be between 2 and 3, then 3 and 4 and then, because we were again stuck following slow moving freight trains, 5pm. You would think that by that time, CN would put our train in first priority to get us to Vancouver. No. Freights first. Lunch was leftover leftovers and, according to the waiter, there was no food for dinner should that need arise. The scenery was lovely, but many of the passengers were too worried about their missed connections in Vancouver to enjoy it. Shame.

In the end, we got behind another slow freight train and crawled into Vancouver at 7:00. No food, not a single snack left on the train, no attempts to pass it or speed things up. The service manager kept coming on and blaming the CN dispatcher, saying he would not allow us to pass. Apparently there is bad blood between CN and Via, something the customers should never be aware of and certainly not subject to. By this time, there was not a pretzel in sight and the staff avoided all eye contact with the passengers. It was clear they had no contingency plan for further emergencies, mechanical, food, or otherwise. No apology from Via, just false cries of “thank you, have a nice day” as we left the train. Trust me, by the look on everyone’s face, no one had a nice day and Via rail was not welcome.
As far as we went, we lost a full precious day of vacation with family, not to mention putting our daughter out who took the day off work to meet us at the station. Instead, she sat home all day, waiting for our call.

The only thing good I can say about this trip was the staff. They were helpful and friendly and although they constantly avoided the subject of such poor customer service, it was clear they felt badly about the way we were being treated.
Sure, derailment it a problem for everyone, but why are the passenger trains the last to get through? If this is the case, Via shouldn’t advertise first class service. It’s an embarrassment to our country for all the foreign visitors who suffered through this trip, never mind false advertising. Most people on the train said had they known that this was the level of service provided, they would never have signed on. There were babies, children and elderly people on this trip and Via couldn’t have cared less about their discomfort. While everyone was making the poor parents of a crying baby’s life miserable, they did nothing to alleviate the situation. I will NEVER recommend to anyone to put him or herself through this stress where holidays are squandered by a thoughtless corporation and the passenger’s time is of no value.

Also, If you think this is a rare problem or I’m just a complainer, I talked to many other very unhappy passengers who assured me that this is becoming what to expect on Via Rail as profits rise and customer service shrinks. The passenger train is a second thought in the larger, more lucrative freight market. A more humane way to travel? I doubt it. This was slow torture. Someone on the train compared it to being Via Rail’s prisoner, marched on and off the train at their whim.

So…..part 2
Unfortunately, my husband and I had booked to return to Toronto a month later on the train, picking it up in Edmonton. We called Via Rail and were assured that what had happened to us was a very rare occurrence and they offered us a credit voucher for approx. $300 each. This is no way covered the cost of our aggravation, but when they allowed us to apply it to the cost of our trip rather than use it toward future travel (NEVER going to happen), we foolishly agreed to follow our original plans. BTW, Via Rail doesn't tell passengers about the credit voucher (it is 50% of an economy fare, no accommodations), but it is their policy when a train is more than four hours late. You have to call to complain to get it.

Day One:
We picked up the train in Edmonton at 11:45 pm. Problems immediately with the engine. No power (lights, etc) to the cars. We left an hour late and that lateness grew to 1.5 hours during the night as we stopped and sat doing nothing several times.
In the morning, we were assured this would not be a repeat of our earlier experiences, but our hearts sunk as we sat on the side of the tracks over and over again. Soon we were two hours behind heading to Winnipeg.
As the day went on, our timing continued to worsen, with the same well-used excuses: “CN dispatch poor organization” or” “heavy freight traffic.” Seriously??? Why do they keep pretending that is an unusual situation rather than the norm. At Via and CN, freight comes first, the needs of their passengers second. Stop pretending otherwise.
We were supposed to have a four-hour stop over in Winnipeg and dinner with friends that we missed on the way out due to lateness- sorry- foiled again. We ended up with 40 minutes at 10:30 at night! Via seems to think sitting idly on the sides of the tracks for hours at a time is just as good as actually reaching your destinations on time and spending your vacation time the way you planned it. Please believe me when I tell you that you will sit on the sides on the tracks for literally hours each day as you work around one freight train after another.

Day Two and Three:

Honestly, I do not even have the energy to bother giving details. The whole train is disheartened as we do not arrive at a single stop on time or get more than a few minutes at each one to stretch our legs. As usual, we are assured the time will be made up, but as we find ourselves continually sitting at the side of the tracks, even the most naïve of us know this will not happen. We finally arrive in Toronto 2.5 hours late with people scrambling to make connections, most of which are long gone. Another end to a terrible ride. As they scramble to prepare the train for the next group, I shudder for those poor unwitting passengers.

We arrived on the Saturday of the long weekend in Toronto. Our ride was long gone as we were supposed to arrive early and the traffic was terrible. By the time we caught a cab at 12:30, it took us three hours to get out of Toronto and cost us $160 more.

Here is Via Rail's response to my complaint requesting a refund.

Thank you for your email concerning your experience with VIA Rail Canada.

At the outset, please accept our sincere apologies for your overall disappointment with your experience on the Canadian departing on April 28 and May 18. We sincerely regret that your experience failed to meet your expectations.

Please accept our most sincere apologies for the inconvenience caused to you on May 2 due to the delayed arrival of your train 01 into Vancouver. Although on-time performance is a priority at VIA Rail, you will appreciate that mechanical malfunctions and operating difficulties beyond our control can occasionally cause delays despite our best efforts.Train 01 was delayed as a result of a CN derailment at Uno outside of Melville as well as mechanical problems; we sincerely apologize for the inconvenience caused to our passengers and any negative impact these delays may have had on their travel plans.

We are sorry to learn that your perception of the amenities on board did not properly match your expectations. As reported, you were disappointed with the size of the cabin, lounge in the Park car and that you found the decor was dated, and also that there is no wireless service or television offered on board. As these services are dependant upon the same reception needed for cellular phones, we are unable to provide these services on our Western Transcontinental train at this time due to the very limited receptive zones on this route. We are sorry to learn of your disappointment that brunch was served rather than a breakfast and a lunch, and as reported suitable snacks were not provided to passengers before dinner. Please note that your comments regarding the ammenities and services provided on board have been forwarded to the product manager responsible as well as the managers responsible for our on train services personnel.

We are very sorry to learn that due to the delay of train 01 you were unable to view the Rockies during the daylight hours; we deeply regret the inconvenience caused and negative impact on the enjoyment of your experience.

We are pleased to learn that our employees on board were both friendly and helpful during your trip. Your comments have been forwarded to the managers responsible for our on train services personnel.

We are sorry to learn that train 02 arrived over two hours late on May 21 upon your return to Toronto. As mentioned in your email, after discovering a mechanical problem with one of the cars at Edmonton was removed and delayed departure and further delayed en route by freight traffic. We sincerely apologize that you were delayed on both legs of your trip with VIA.

As a gesture of concern, VIA offers travel credits equivalent to 50% of the value (excluding accommodations) of the affected leg in the case that the Western Transcontinental train is delayed by four hours or more at passenger's destination.

We are sorry to learn of your disappointment with the compensation offered in the form of a 50% travel credit which was exceptionally applied to your return trip on May 18 and reimbursed to your credit card.

We must respectfully decline your request for a cash refund. In the case that a ticket has been used for travel and transportation has been provided cash refunds are never offered. The travel credit offered is a form of service recovery and has no cash value and can therefore not be replaced by a cash refund. VIA offers travel credits as a means to acknowledge the inconvenience caused to our passengers in the case of a delay or service issue and also to encourage future travel with VIA under more favorable circumstances.

Again, thank you for writing and allowing us the opportunity to follow up and address your concerns. It is hoped that, despite your disappointment on this occasion, you will consider travelling with VIA in the future, albeit under more favorable conditions.

Customer Relations Officer

luvmykknjRead More
4/19/2011 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - Worst customer service i have ever seen I hope
Worst customer service i have ever seen I hope this company goes down. Waiting on the phone for an hour.

GeorgeRead More
4/15/2011 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - I waited 55 minutes to speak to a service rep this
I waited 55 minutes to speak to a service rep this one answered....level of service =ZERO.
We need another train line!

loverRead More
3/16/2011 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - Amazing, a company the size of Via Rail, and no
Amazing, a company the size of Via Rail, and no apparent customer service feedback mechanism on the companies Web Site. Lts just hope that someone monitors this ad hoc site, and takes appropriate actions.
This entry is with regard to the via rail service and station in Vancouver(Pacific Central)
Last night, March 15th, I escorted my sister in law to the train station to assist with boarding. The pre-boarding assistance by George at the baggage check in was excellent, and the lounge waiting area was appreciated. However, the boarding experience was horrendous.
The train platform is only partially covered, and access to the car she was boarding was open to the weather. Having to walk in the pouring rain (as can be expected in Vancouver), with no assistance from the via personnel, and no offer of courtesy umberella was a very bad start to a once in a lifetime trip. Surely, Via realizes that a consumer has many options for travelling, and to start off on such a negative note is a definite problem. Also, as a proud Canadian, I was disgusted with the state of the washrooms at the train station. The mens washroom urinal area was filthy. I had been there three times over the last week, 2 of which I had complained about the state of the washroom to a security guard, and a via ticket agent. The smell of urine was very apparent as a result of the urine on the floor. The urinals also don't automatic flushers, which they should.
Obviously, the staff at the station don't care, or there just isn't sufficient pride in the facility. This is what we present to visitors to Canada after spending millions of dollars on the Olympics. I spoke to a customer service representative on the phone about this experience, and she said she would have someone call me, but it may take up to 3 days. Totally unacceptable. I can only hope that the 4 day trip from Vancouver to Toronto is a far better experience, than the experiences at the Vancouver train station.
This may explain why there were so few passengers on the train. Don't the service personnel realize that their jobs depend on customer satisfaction.
I will see how long it takes for customer service to call.

CliffRead More
3/10/2011 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - To whom this may concern:Ticket File Number
To whom this may concern:
Ticket File Number SHL218,Via train 056 on route from toronto to montreal Feb 18/2011,Return montreal to toronto Feb 19/2011 train 057.

My name is Frank .

I was travling with my girlfriend and her son on routes mention above,My complaits are as follows,Apon boring the train at 930 am,i found the temperature in the train to be quite warm,i began removing clothing but still felt warm.I was concered because I have ashma and when temperture is warm I begin to have breathing issues.As we were about 1 hour into ride it became even warmer and had to take my puffers to help with my breathing,I felt it was not getting better and infact it felt like it was warming up even more,The passengers beside us were complaining aswell and there kids began removing clothing aswell.She told attendent it was very hot and she replyed ,well its winter it must be warm,I then addressed this issue with her and I was pretty upset and told her I have health issue to do something.Well My health was not getting better infact my girlfriend was quite affraid and told me I didnt look so well,she then gave me water and cold cloth,still this didnot help.I then addressed her agian and told my health issue and told her to do something right away,she said she did and it would take sometime to cool down train car,well this did not happen and agian I was getting sick and very hard to breath,she then asked me if I would like to move to another car,well of course I said NO,I could hardly breath and was very dizzy.She then went to front of car and I then saw her conversing with male attendent,they then came to me and said they turned air condition on,I said ok but why they waited so long to do this,we were now more than half way to montreal.Well about 30 min later I felt temperture getting better(cooler)they came to me and asked if it was ok,I said it was cooler thank you but my health issue was not over,I got to montreal but I was feeling weak and still dizzy and NO one came to me after all that to ask if I was ok as I was getting off train.My girlfriend and her son had planned a whole birthday weekend for me and that eveing were going to take me to some friends and out for dinner,well that did not happen,I was subject to stay in my Hotel room all night to recover.
The next morning we needed to return to toronto at 10am.I did not enjoy this weeked trip at all and infact it was quite scary and upsetting for all of us.Above all this there was a loud rattling noise and sounded like rad noise and sceaching sound to the seats beside us,it was so loud it drove us nuts on top of all other problem.I must say it was the worst experince of my life.Please advise me in which VIA is willing to compensate me and my travling friends in reguards to this matter.THANK YOU

frankiRead More
2/28/2011 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - Not impressed with the cancellation of coach
Not impressed with the cancellation of coach service on 83 tonight (same happened this morning on 82). Appears to be a conflict when the service manager can unilaterally decide to cancel coach service because she can't handle first class on her own. The coach guy had his cart all loaded and ready to go when she called him to first class. But he's a doll and he made a stationary coffee stall for us to collect a coffee. Can't help wonder though about the poor people that were expecting to buy something to eat. Don't waste your time answering my complaint. Your time is better spent on trying to improve service on your coach class.

LizRead More
2/10/2011 Via Rail Canada (Canada) - I am a Via Privilege customer, have been for
I am a Via Privilege customer, have been for years. I travel frequently between Toronto and Montreal, usually on the 5:00pm "Renaissance" express train. I heartily concur with the comments of 1/25/11 concerning the cleanliness of the facilities on these trains. They are poor at best, just foul sometimes. I cannot recall the last time I was in a washroom on one of those trains where everything was in working order. On my last trip from Toronto to Montreal, two washrooms in the last two cars of the train were completely shut down. So disappointing. Our intercity rail travel is so far behind the Europeans it would be funny if it weren't so sad.

By the way, you will never get a live person when you dial in using 1-800-681-2561 for Customer Service. What you will get is the following message "all of our agents are currently serving other customers...please leave us a message by pressing 1...". If you remain on the line you will be cut off after being told 3 times to leave a message. Now that's customer service!!! You are also warned in so many words that it may take longer than expected to get back to you. In other words, don't hold your breath!!!

I am a huge booster of intercity rail travel, have been for 30 years. Via just continues to disappoint me, year after year.

NapoleonRead More
    Next Comments
Add a comment:

Please click on the number of stars to award for the company's customer service. Please do not enter personal information into the comments.

(Comments will be added pending approval by the webmaster.)

Company Rating:
Your Comment:
Your First Name or Nickname:
Your E-Mail Address (not published):