MONTRÉAL, Canada – VIA Rail Canada is reporting a busy Easter holiday weekend. Motivated by their desire to travel efficiently and seamlessly, more Canadians chose to get on board VIA Rail trains during the Easter weekend, compared to last year. Between this past March 24th and 29th, 74,000 passengers traveled on trains throughout the country, an increase of 7.4% compared to 2015.
“We’re very pleased to have been able to help travellers get to their destinations safely and comfortably over the long weekend,” said Yves Desjardins-Siciliano, VIA Rail’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “These results, the best for both ridership and revenues in the past five years, tell us that more and more people are recognizing that the train is more than just another way of getting there; it is indeed a smarter way to travel.”
Dynamism | Performance | Popularity
On the coast-to-coast network, the busiest day was Thursday, March 24th, when some 16,500 passengers boarded trains. Several trains showed an occupancy rate of over 85%. There were no cancellations and 98.5% of all trains arrived on-time or with only minor delays.
VIA Rail customers made good use of trains in the Quebec City–Windsor corridor, which proved the most popular over the long weekend, registering an increase of 7.2% in ridership and 11.8% in revenues compared to the same period in 2015.
Performance on VIA Rail’s longer-distance services like the Canadian (Toronto-Vancouver) and the Ocean (Halifax-Montréal) also improved significantly. Compared to last year, they welcomed 23.8% more passengers and revenues were up by 77.5%. The introduction of Prestige Class on the Canadian was a major contributing factor to these significant increases.
On social media, faithful to their habit, VIA Rail customers sent many comments about the quality of customer service. There were 885 mentions of VIA Rail on Twitter and Facebook during the Easter break. Moreover, a great number of customers on trains comfortably connected to VIA Rail’s on-board Wi-Fi. On Quebec City – Windsor Corridor trains, close to 54,000 devices transferred some 6,000 GB of data, the equivalent of some six million Web site visits or emails (of 1 MB). On the Ocean, 350 devices transferred close to 30 GB of data, which represents more than 30,000 Web site visits or emails (of 1 MB).