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VIA Rail Rolls into Top Spot For Agentís Choice Awards


MONTREAL - VIA Rail Canada has been awarded the First Place for passenger rail services in the eighth annual Agentís Choice Awards. Returning to the number one spot after a one-year lapse is testament to the companyís ongoing commitment to customer focus and innovation. More than 4000 travel agents participated in the voting that recognizes the very best in 19 categories from rail operators to tour operators.

An easy-to-use website, informative staff and outstanding service were sited as a few reasons why VIA was voted into the top spot. VIA receives numerous letters from customers signifying the positive outcomes of their trips due to helpful staff and efficient travels throughout VIA services, however this award is recognition that comes from VIAís travel agent partners in the industry. ďThe few times Iíve called theyíre always there to help,Ē said Dolphie Judd of Belview Travel Inc. in Toronto. ďTheyíre very polite and helpful. The agent website is also very good. Itís easy to use and you can do a booking in less than ten minutes.Ē

Mohamed Bhanji, director, Marketing Technologies at VIA, was thrilled to see VIA back in first place, as they were in years prior to 2006. ďItís always nice to get a vote of confidence from the agency community, who are our partners,Ē said Bhanji.

This news further supports VIAís vision to continue to innovate. VIA has almosted completed the migration of travel agencies from the Global Distribution Systems (GDSs) to its agent website which provides rich content. VIA will continue to invest in new technology to enhance the usability and functionality of its agent website.

Coming in second place this year was Rocky Mountaineer, followed by Rail Europe, British Rail and Orient Express. Filling in the overall top ten were Amtrak, Japan Rail, Brewster, Trans-Siberian Railway and Shongololo Express.

VIA Rail Canada is the national passenger rail service, connecting some 450 communities from coast to coast. For further information, please call 888 VIA-RAIL (842-7245), TTY 800 268-9503 (hearing impaired), visit VIAís website at or contact your travel agent.


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