As you may have read, we gave train travel with a toddler a try on a recent weekend trip to Portland, Oregon. While we may still be undecided on whether or not it’s a better option for us than taking the car, we know one thing for sure: It beats flying.
While Slaed dealt with getting the car parked downtown, I was charged with getting us settled at the station. This involved checking us in for our train ride down to Portland, dropping our bags to be checked, and scoping out our seating situation because we were riding coach and didn’t yet have an assigned seat. All these great responsibilities needed to be taken care of with Bergen riding along in the backpack carrier. Sounds like an ordeal, right?
But would you have guessed getting those tasks accomplished took all of about 5 minutes?
- First, I checked us in at the counter. No line. All I needed was identification and my confirmation information, and Slaed (my travel companion) didn’t even need to be present.
- Next, at that same counter, the friendly gentleman took our two roller bags.
- Finally, I walked over to the kiosk near our departure door and waited for the seat assignment process to start.
- When it was time to board, we just simply walked through the door, and climbed into our assigned train car. No security. No scanners. No required rules about staying seated, and paying attention to this or that.
TIP: When riding coach, if you are concerned about your seating assignment, arrive at the station early to get in line. If you don’t care about your seat, I wouldn’t worry about it. If you want to know your seat assignment ahead of time, pay the extra money and ride business class.
What a breath of fresh air compared to the airport shenanigans we go through.
Since we were early, I was second in line. Waiting really didn’t matter to me though because from where I stood, I could take in the King Street Station’s new (or in fact, old) look.
The King Street Station recently went through extensive restoration to bring the station both up to date, and back to the beauty it exuded at it’s beginning in 1906. Of note, the ceiling was restored and recreated to match it’s original look, the floors were cleaned and restored, and “modernized” light fixtures were removed to make way for fixtures that fit the character of the building and architecture.
The result is quite impressive, and I felt lucky to get to experience the station in all it’s glory.
Where have you traveled by train? Share with us one of the noteworthy train stations you have experienced!
This post is linked to Travel Photo Thursday at Budget Traveler’s Sandbox.