Friday, May 15, 2015

Quote of the Day: Amtrak Subsidies edition

In my recent post on Amtrak, a number of commenters said (quite rightly) that all modes of travel are subsidized.  However, rail is subsidized at a much higher rate per passenger mile than any other form.  How high?  The Antiplanner crunches some numbers on the subsidy on the Amtrak Chicago - Milwaukee route:
In other words, the [Amtrak] subsidy alone would have been enough to give every single Hiawatha rider a free trip on Greyhound or Megabus (at the low cost of $7 per trip).
When the subsidy is high enough to entirely cover the ticket price of a competing mode of travel, you're in a whole 'nother world.  So why do we do this?  The Antiplanner hits center mass:
Until that happens, now you know why you should be happy that your tax dollars are going to subsidize Amtrak: so that a few snobs who won’t ride ordinary buses can get subsidies to ride expensive and mostly empty trains.
Yup.  Class warfare in action.


drjim said...

Well, you certainly can't expect our Elite to ride on a dirty bus with the smelly commoners, can you?

Ken said...

A round trip ticket on Megabus from Cleveland to Chicago was $2 cheaper than just parking my car for two days in Chicago would have been. Got wifi too.

Greyhound, on the other hand, is an armpit. I did Greyhound from Cleveland to Detroit once. Once was enough.