Rising gas prices encourage more people to ride Amtrak - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Rising gas prices encourage more people to ride Amtrak

QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) -- The rising cost of gas has many people looking for ways to save, and some people are turning to the train.

Amtrak says ridership between Quincy and Chicago has soared more than 87 percent over the last 5 years.

"It's cheaper. It's just easier than having to pay the gas prices to drive," said Mary Hevland.

Hevland rides Amtrak when she travels to visit family, and she's not the only one turning to the train to save on gas.

"There's a lot more on the train this morning than I have seen," said Hevland.

Amtrak officials say ridership is up more than 4 percent in just the last four months, and much of that increase is due to the rise in gas prices.

It's a trend Mildred McCray has noticed for awhile.

"A few months ago I was able to have a seat by myself and now I've got to share a seat. I don't like that," said McCray.

But, it looks like McCray will have to put up with the company. People like student Ryan O'Malley just can't pass up the savings.

"A lot of my friends who normally drive home to go home to Chicago where I live, a lot of them would rather take the train now," said O'Malley. 

If you're looking to save even more on travel, Amtrak now offers a free rewards card that gives you points every time to take the train. The points can add up to free trips and even greater cost savings.

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