On 25 mei 2009, at 1:15, Fred Baker wrote:
SBA-LAX-AMS-Den Hague, the last hop in both cases being by train
instead of an airplane.
("'s-Gravenhage", "Den Haag", "The Hague", "La Haye", "La Haya" but
not "Den Hague".)
Yes, but that's a 30 minute train ride (to Amsterdam is 15 from the
airport), running every 15 minutes (every hour after midnight) and
close enough to take a taxi if you are so inclined. However:
On 25 mei 2009, at 8:29, Henk Uijterwaal wrote:
I'm not quite sure how a 1:50 or 2:30 hour train ride translates
to 4 hours of extra travel time.
Easy: on the way back you need to build in extra time so if there is a
problem with the train you don't miss your flight. Don't forget that
unlike the major cities in the Netherlands Maastricht has a "single
homed" connection to the Dutch rail network and I wouldn't want to
take a 200 km taxi ride.
So suppose you're flying from SFO with Northwest, leaving on friday.
Land at 10:30 on saturday. (Results based on doing all of this the
same week this year.) I don't think you'll make the 11:00 train, so it
would have to be the 11:30 or 12:00 one, which gets you to the
Maastricht train station at 14:04 or 14:34 with 6 minutes to change
trains in Utrecht. So far so good.
However, on the way back your flight leaves at 11:10 which means you
need to be at the airport at 9:00 or so. The first train in the
morning leaves at 6:26 and is at Schiphol at 8:59 but that leaves
almost no room for error. Dutch trains run on time 80% or so of the
time and you need two, so 64% chance they're both on time...
Maastricht is certainly not the worst IETF location ever, but sticking
to one of the four main cities in the Netherlands would have been a
whole lot better. Someone made the argument that the venues there are
popular so you need to book long in advance. Don't we now have the
dates set for the next five years??
And as I said before, I would be very interested to learn whether
doing this in june rather than july would have made a different
location in the Netherlands a more viable option.
Anyway, during those hours, you
will be sitting on a chair as comfortable as in most planes. I'd
think that most of us do what IETF'ers typically do: open their laptop
and start working.
The non-double decker intercity trains are pretty nice and if you use
first class then it's roomy and quiet. As long as you travel outside
peak hours you should at least be able to sit in second class but lots
of people talking and making phone calls.
In case you get stuck at Schiphol or a train station (or if you can
log into your mail within 2 minutes during stops):
On 25 mei 2009, at 8:59, Patrik Fältström wrote:
It is 3 changes from FRA, on one of the routes, but no changes from
AMS or BRU.
Last time I checked planes don't land at the central station in
Amsterdam or Brussels...
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