I spent $800 for a roomette on a 57-hour Amtrak trip. It gave me a sense of taste of luxury travel — and I don’t want to go back to coach.

Side-by-side photos show the author in an Amtrak roomette (left) and an Amtrak train (right).

I was diddled away by how luxurious Amtrak’s mid-tier adaptation felt.

Jordan Parker Erb/Insider

  • This month, I went on my first cantankerous-country railroad train trip, a 57-hour ride from Montana to New York.
  • After a lifetime traveling in bus, I upgraded to a roomette, Amtrak’south mid-level accommodation.
  • The private room, meals, and lounge gave me a taste of luxury. Now I don’t desire to get back to bus.

For the past 25 years, all of my travel has been in coach.

Traveling by railroad train was my showtime experience exterior economy class.

Hashemite kingdom of jordan Parker Erb/Insider

Whether I’m traveling by airplane or railroad train, I e’er book the cheapest tickets possible, typically landing me somewhere most the dorsum.

When traveling by plane, I covet the costly, showtime-class seats at the front. As I board, hauling my numberless to the last row, I find myself admiring the luxurious seats — the manner they recline into beds; the mode the people in them always seem relaxed and are somehow always sipping a mimosa. How practice they look so rested, and then at peace in the midst of the anarchy of travel?

I chop-chop learned that when it comes to travel, money buys rest.

While in the Amtrak roomette, I felt more rested than I e’er have while traveling.

Jordan Parker Erb/Insider

This month, I booked a roomette on an Amtrak trip from Montana to New York Metropolis. For $837, I got a taste of luxury: a private room with 2 beds, 3 complimentary meals a twenty-four hour period, and access to a private lounge in Chicago’s Union Station. Insider paid for the accommodation, per our reporting standards.

The trip, which took a total of 57 hours, was the closest I’ll ever go to first course. It gave me a glimpse into the lifestyles of rich and rested travelers — and I don’t want to go back to coach.

Past booking an Amtrak roomette, I got admission to first-class amenities.

With a lie-flat bed to sleep in at nighttime, Amtrak’due south roomette provided a seamless way to stay rested while traveling.

Hashemite kingdom of jordan Parker Erb/Insider

Roomettes are Amtrak’s mid-level accommodation, and the cheapest mode to travel if you lot want to accept a bed. Because I was traveling alone and the roomettes are designed to fit two people, I had the entire space to myself — and was blown away.

Roomettes come with two seats that fold into a bed, and an upper bunk for a second traveler. The sleeper machine has a dedicated attendant who helps make the beds when it’due south time to slumber.

With the seats folded into a bed, I had enough room to sleep sprawled out — non folded over a tray table or crammed against the window like I’grand used to. With my room door closed, I couldn’t hear other travelers or howling infants nearby, and unlike in economy seats, could slumber without headphones.

Each morning time I woke feeling rested and energized. My two nights spent in the roomette showed me that at that place are 2 key factors that make travel feel more luxurious: privacy and space.

Coming in at about 23 square feet, the roomette had more space and amenities than I’ve ever had while traveling by plane.

The roomette came with unexpected amenities, including ample storage and a small mirror.

Jordan Parker Erb/Insider

Located in a automobile at the dorsum of the railroad train, my roomette had enough space for everything I packed. If I needed my suitcase, it could fit on an actress chair in the room; but when I was washed with it, I could put information technology on a rack in the hallway.

With my suitcase stored, I had enough of room to spread out. The room came with a mirror, hooks, and hangers for my wearing apparel, equally well as enough outlets for my devices. The steps that led to the top bunk doubled equally shelves, so there was ample space for a book, water bottle, and other little property.

Unlike in economy grade, my roomette came with three complimentary meals each day.

The train’due south dining cart was charming and quaint, and the nutrient was better than expected.

Jordan Parker Erb/Insider

While on short flights, I’m prepared for measly snacks, like a scattering of peanuts or pretzels. While on long flights, I’m prepared for borderline inedible meals. For this trip, I had steeled myself for the aforementioned — but was impressed by what I got instead.

When I took a seat on the train’s dining cart, I found a menu that resembled whatsoever given eating place, offer pasta, burgers, sandwiches, and more than. There were even vegetarian options, for herbivores similar myself, which were surprisingly good.

The vegan Bolognese, sandwiches, and broiled potatoes with vegan chili eclipsed anything I’ve had on an economy flying. The desserts — cheesecake, mousse, layer cake — left Biscoff cookies in the dust.

Dinner came with a complimentary alcoholic beverage — so I, too, could have been nonchalantly sipping a mimosa, if I chose to.

While on a layover in Chicago, I got admission to Marriage Station’s Metropolitan Lounge.

The Metropolitan Lounge (left) is inside Chicago’s opulent Union Station.

Jordan Parker Erb/Insider

Prior to booking a roomette, I had never visited lounges at airports or train stations. I’ve grown used to spending long layovers stationed wherever I can observe a seat.

Just with the roomette, I was afforded lounge access during my five-hr layover in Chicago’south Spousal relationship Station and got a glimpse at what I’ve been missing out on all these years.

When I arrived at the Metropolitan Lounge at 5 p.m., I institute gratuitous snacks, coffee, and tea, as well as clean, private showers. Spread out over three floors, the lounge was filled with so much seating I couldn’t imagine a situation in which every chair would be taken.

After a shower, a meal, and a hot tea, I boarded the railroad train for my final stretch to New York Metropolis.

Overall, my experience traveling by train was leagues in a higher place flight.

A view of the sunset over the Hudson River during my final night in the roomette.

Hashemite kingdom of jordan Parker Erb/Insider

Even though it took almost seven times longer and was twice as expensive as flight, (information technology can take as few every bit viii hours and toll every bit footling as $400 to wing from my hometown, Helena, to New York Urban center) taking the railroad train was a far better, more than luxurious experience.

The meals, extra space, and the power to get a good night’southward sleep made me wish that I could travel like this more often. And as I crawled into bed on my terminal night in the roomette, I thought once over again of the relaxed, posh people I see in the showtime-class airplane seats.

“No wonder they’re then rested,” I idea every bit I drifted off, rocked to sleep by the movement of the train.

For 57 hours, I was lucky enough to live like 1 of those people.

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