VIA Rail to resume full service from Windsor Thursday


VIA Rail is helping to take travelers a step closer to pre-COVID-19 normalcy.

With the summer holiday travel season underground, the national rail network has begun resuming service cuts on many routes across Canada that were discontinued due to the pandemic. On Thursday, more trains will be reinstated along the Windsor-Toronto-Quebec City corridor.

VIA Rail Senior Manager of Customer Experience Vladimir Jean-Pierre told WindsorNewsToday.ca that the carrier is thrilled to bring full capacity passenger rail service back to Windsor.

“The Windsor portion is back to pre-COVID,” said Jean-Pierre. “So we’ve just reinstated the last return trip for trains 78 and 79, which will offer more connectivity for people from Windsor and London.”

During the pandemic, trains between Windsor and Toronto’s Union Station went back and forth, three times daily. Starting Thursday, it’s four times a day.

The rail system welcomed a record five million passengers in 2019. But like other transportation entities, VIA Rail has suffered decreased ridership due to COVID-19 restrictions. Jean-Pierre said much work has been done to ensure travel can return to the way it was and that it can be done safely.

“VIA Rail was one part of a company in transportation that was impacted, so it was a great, great impact overall on all Canadian lives actually,” said Jean-Pierre.

Jean-Pierre added that concerning passenger safety, A Crown corporation like VIA Rail must adhere to federal transportation guidelines. Therefore, there will still be a mask mandate on all trains.

The Ocean route, which serves Quebec and the Atlantic provinces, resumed full-service last week. On Friday, trains will be added to the Jasper-Prince Rupert route between Alberta and BC

Complete information about VIA Rail and available routes can be found on its official website.

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