As of Monday, Feb. 12, Amtrak passengers can browse the Internet while riding the train in Michigan, Missouri, Illinois and Wisconsin.
The Michigan Department of Transportation invested roughly $1 million to make this possible.
“We have added this to all Michigan Amtrak services,” said MDOT Communications Director Nick Schirripa. “We are so happy to have this addition.”
This new Wi-Fi service on Amtrak is expected to increase revenue approximately $600,000 over the next three to five years.
Amtrak Media Relations Manager Marc Magliari said, “We have seen an increase in ridership on Amtrak when we have done this in other states.”
Amtrak used existing cell phone carrier towers around the rail lines to provide the Wi-Fi access. There is no added fee for passengers to access Wi-Fi.
Amtrak limits file downloads to 10MB. Passengers will be able to use Internet browsing and email, but there are restrictions on accessing television and music usage.
Local Lansing Amtrak riders are excited about this enhancement to train.
Area resident Brian Bobal uses the train to see sporting events.
“I take the train to go to Chicago or to see the New Jersey Devils games all the time, Bobal said.”
When asked if he was happy with the Wi-Fi addition Bobal said, “I think it is worth the investment. After all, what better way to make the customers comfortable than to let them surf the Internet.”
Local Faith Krogulecki used the train to travel to Chicago. She believes that adding Wi-Fi to trains will make the ride more “comfortable and luxurious” to those who use it.
Although she does believe this was a lot of money to invest for Wi-Fi, Krogulecki said this service this would benefit the riders.
“Wi-Fi is an important amenity for our passengers, Schirripa said. We are excited to partner with Illinois, Wisconsin and Missouri on this service and we are looking for more ways to make travel on trains more accessible in Michigan.”
“We are certainty looking forward to our passengers enjoyment, he said.”
–Danielle St. Marie