Report: #1244835

Complaint Review: AMTRAK - Nationwide

  • Submitted:
  • Updated:
  • Reported By: Brian — Philadelphia Pennsylvania USA
  • AMTRAK Nationwide USA

AMTRAK Rewards Ripoff deceptive tickets incentives fraud illegal Nationwide

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Amtrak Rewards and Amtrak Trains are not friends, don't even talk to each other and such Rewards as there are may be subject to hidden unappealing restrictions

I reserved with Amtrak a 12:45 pm train out of Portland Maine with a connection with a 4:45 pm train from Boston to Philly July 26th

I had earned 3000 points trough the Rewards program  and paid $33 for an additional 1000 points  a total of 4000 points to entitle me to one free ride from Portland to Philly

When i tried to redeem my points, Amtrak told me I would have to cancel my reservation and book my travel solely through the Amtrak rewards telephone number. So I canceled my reservation

When I called Amtrak rewards the agent told me my afternoon train had been canceled due to track work and the earliest I could leave Boston would be 9:30pm Sunday getting me in to Philly groggily at 4:35 am Monday. I was a little flexible and after the recent deadly Amtrak wreck in Philly glad they were doing needed work so I asked about leaving on Monday but the agent said there was track work scheduled for Monday afternoon too and the earliest I could leave would be that same 9:30 pm departure overnight train. What else could I do?

So the agent booked me on Sunday9:30 pm out of Boston train and before that  a concord coach bus out of Portland at 6 pm bound for Boston.

The friend I was visiting in Maine got me on the last southbound bus out of nearby Bath bound for Portland and when I got in Portland I learned my bus was continuing on to Boston. So rather than dragging my bag off the bus and waiting 3 hours for the 6 pm bus, Concord allowed me to stay on the bus until its final Boston destination and we got in about 6:30 pm

Imagine my surprise when I looked at the departures and arrivals board and discovered that there was a train departing  Boston 6:40 pm bound for DC through Philly and then heard the announcement it was boarding

I got in line and was told I would have to go to the ticket window to get my ticket changed from the 9;30 pm to the 6:40. The ticket agent could do nothing for me. I would have to contact Amtrak rewards directly and she couldn't put me through to them

Clutching my cellphone to my ear in the noisy station I called as I raced back to the departing train and was on hold for several minutes when the conductor outside the train after everybody else had boarded,said I could board the train and work it out on phone onboard.  

17 minutes into the phone call most of which rewards agent heather had me on hold, she returned to chide me but we passed through the tunnel and the call dropped.

I called back, couldn't get through to agent Heather, but agent Linda told me the reservation could not be changed to the train I was actually on, the earlier than 9:30 pm train that according to the Amtrak  rewards booking agent wasn't supposed to have existed.

Linda asked me to tell the conductor to call his supervisor and shortly afterward the supervisor showed up seat side. When  I caught wind that he was going to make me pay full fare and not honor my Amtrak rewards I  took out my phone to video our transaction

The supervisor followed through on his threat to bring a local police officer aboard  at which time rather than being escorted by the genial officer onto the train platform at Some Small Town Mass I dialed up the Amtrak reservation number they gave me and after telling my sad story once again was obliged to pay $205 for full fare

I believe I was lied to by the Rewards agent about supposed train cancelations due to supposed track work because my original 4:45 train out of Boston did in fact run on schedule today and the 5:40 and 6:40 I am on after that

And I suspect there is some weird business/legal relation between Amtrak Rewards and Amtrak Trains and that my "reward" is the train with the least desirable departure and arrival times Amtrak has.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 07/28/2015 09:34 AM and is a permanent record located here: https://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/amtrak/nationwide/amtrak-rewards-ripoff-deceptive-tickets-incentives-fraud-illegal-nationwide-1244835. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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