FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
|Question: How much does it cost to charter, rent, or lease the
Answer: To answer this question, you need to talk directly to our Charter
Agent, There is basic information on our Pricing & Costs
The same answer applies for stationary charters.
|Question: What's your most popular trip? |
Answer: One-day round trips to Williamsburg, Virginia
from Washington, D.C. Talk to our
for more information about this and all other destinations.
|Question: Can a group of people charter the DOVER HARBOR?|
Answer: Yes. Many of our clients do this to share costs and still experience the wonder and elegance of first-class rail car travel. With accommodations for
24 guests on day trips and
up to 10 guests on overnight trips, sharing costs with friends, family, or anyone can make a DOVER HARBOR trip affordable for people who otherwise might not even consider an individual charter.
|Question: What is the schedule for the DOVER HARBOR?|
Answer: The DOVER HARBOR does not run on a set schedule. We operate
the car on a first-come first-serve basis. To find out if the DOVER HARBOR
is available for specific dates, your need to talk directly to our Charter
|Question: How many people can the DOVER HARBOR accommodate?|
Answer: The DOVER HARBOR can accommodate 24 passengers on day trips
and up to 10 passengers on overnight trips. At stationary charters, the car can
usually accommodate about 30 people comfortably (but only 24 seated at one
time). If you want to take a bigger group on your journey, our Charter
Agent can arrange for additional accommodations with other
On occasion we have also had customers who wanted to take 24 people on an overnight trip. It is also possible and economical to rent sleeping space from Amtrak on some routes. This allows all members of your party to use the DOVER HARBOR during the day and still accommodates sleeping space for everyone on the train overnight.
Some of our customers also take long day trips and accommodate their guests in hotels during a layover before the return voyage.
|Question: Who makes arrangements with the railroads for a trip?|
Answer: Our Charter Agent,
can make all the arrangements with the railroads for your trip.
|Question: What arrangements are available for food and beverage
Answer: Depending upon your requirements and desires, we can either
arrange for and prepare the food and beverage service, hire an outside chef,
and/or work with a caterer of your choosing. We provide a menu tailored to your exact requirements and can make all the arrangements for you. It's up to you.
|Question: Who provides the crew for the DOVER HARBOR?|
Answer: Crew for the DOVER HARBOR is arranged for by our Charter
Agent. We generally provide a mechanical officer, who is responsible for
the operation of the car and is the railroad liaison. We also provide at least one
Porter/steward who is responsible for attending to the needs of
our passengers (making beds, beverages and snacks, meal service, cleaning).
The steward may serve as the Chef or we may arrange separately for one,
depending upon your needs. Our staff is very experienced, polished, and professional in the best traditions of
first-class service and the legendary Pullman Company. We always go
the extra mile for our customers, and provide 'service with a smile.'
|Question: Where does the DOVER HARBOR operate?|
Answer: The car can travel anywhere in the Amtrak system (east coast, west coast, and everywhere in between), in Canada (including parts of the VIA rail system), and on
most freight or tourist railroads. For most of our charters, we make
arrangements with Amtrak to attach the DOVER HARBOR to a regularly scheduled
Amtrak train. However, the car is available for operation on freight
railroads, public excursion trains, private trains, or other special rail
services. Let us know your needs, and we'll see what we can do for you.
|Question: How much does the DOVER HARBOR operate?|
Answer: The DOVER HARBOR typically operates between 5,000 and 20,000 miles per year.
|Question: Who owns and operates the DOVER HARBOR?|
Answer: The car is owned and operated by the Washington,
D.C. Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society, Inc.
|Question: Who should I talk to for more information?|
Answer: Please talk to our Charter
|Question: I have security and privacy concerns about my journey. Do you have experience in transporting high-profile people in private and are you prepared to protect the privacy and security of such people?|
Answer: Yes. Put your mind at ease. We treat all charter and lease arrangements as private movements of the DOVER HARBOR and protect your privacy accordingly. We have had quite a few high-profile/important/famous passengers and guests aboard the DOVER HARBOR where we had to address privacy and security concerns. For specific issues, talk to our
|Question: Can I ride the DOVER HARBOR without chartering it?|
Answer: Yes. The Washington,
D.C. Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society, Inc. operates
occasional trips on the
|Question: On day trips, can I use the bedrooms?|
Answer: Yes. We always have at least two bedrooms available for use on day trips.
|Question: What does the term 'Private Varnish' mean?|
Answer: The term 'Private Varnish' dates to the late 1800's
when private railroad cars, or more typically, the private cars of railroad
officials were decorated with highly ornate wood interiors, frequently
consisting of mahogany, walnut, oak, and other exotic woods; oftentimes with
elaborate inlays and other decorations. These cars, both inside and out,
were given numerous coats of polished varnish to protect the woods and
finishes and it is from this, that the term 'private varnish' is
'Varnish' was also an appellation given to the premier trains of the day, as
these cars too, would have had highly polished finishes.
As time and technology marched on, railroad cars became made less and less
of wood. During the 'standard era' of railroad car construction, passenger
cars became largely constructed of steel. DOVER HARBOR is of this era of
construction. It's interior has only a small amount of actual wood
(mahogany). It was common during the transition into this era however to
have faux wood grain painted onto the steel interiors as passengers were
accustomed to the wood, and the thinking was that steel was less posh of a
material. Over time however, this practice was abandoned, and other
decoration schemes were employed. DOVER HARBOR, to our knowledge, did not
have any faux wood graining; today, it is painted as it was when rebuilt in
1934, with panels of several paint shades, and pen lining. This repainting
has been accomplished via the use of the Pullman builder's photographs which
we have obtained. Today, some, but not all private railroad cars have wood
interiors, but the term 'Private Varnish' is still very much in use as a
reference to these cars.
|Question: How fast can the DOVER HARBOR go?|
Answer: The DOVER HARBOR can and does travel at speeds up to 110
|Question: What is a heavy weight car?|
Answer: During the period between about 1910 and the mid
nineteen thirties, most passenger cars were built with three axle trucks,
concrete floors, and riveted, double-walled sides and often weighted 90 -
100 tons or more. This period was known as the standard era of passenger
railroad car construction. Beginning in the 1930's, passenger car
bodies were constructed entirely of metal, welded, had two-axle
trucks, and weighted nominally about 45 - 50 tons. Today, these cars
are referred to as "lightweight" cars because of their relative
light weight as compared to the standard era cars, which are now often often
called heavyweights. The DOVER HARBOR is a heavyweight car.
Heavyweight cars are known for their smooth ride and solid
|Question: On overnight trips, does your Porter/Steward still
shine shoes like in the old days?|
Set sail for a first-class adventure aboard the
DOVER HARBOR ...