Amtrak Cascades Route
What a great way to travel from Vancouver BC to Portland Oregon. The only downside is it does leave at 6:30 AM, but it gets you into Portland at about 3 PM, rested, fed and entertained. It’s an absolutely beautiful route through Washington, the water views are so pretty it’s not even hard to stay awake.
Business Class seats are worth the extra fee, and taking two single seats (one behind the other) on the right side of the train car is really the best for maximizing your viewing pleasure. It’s comfortable and on par with any first-class European train. This train did not have a dining car, but the Bistro service and quality was not bad once the train got underway. Prior to departure, there was quite a line.
It was hard to get an answer about what time we needed to be at the station (since we would also be going through customs). At one point, we were told by an Amtrak representative the station did not even open til 6 AM; that is not true, staff is there from about 5 AM. Business Class and Global Entry have a separate line for check-in with no wait. Customs officers board the train at the border, but it a quick walk-through and a quick glance at passenger passports.