The Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority (NNEPRA) announced today that the Amtrak Downeaster achieved record-breaking ridership of 574,404 passengers in 2019, a 7.8% yearly increase. The previous ridership record of 546,056 passengers was set in 2017.
The Amtrak Downeaster experienced record ridership growth in 9 of 12 months, according to NNEPRA Marketing Director Natalie Bogart, who added that August 2019 was not only the highest ridership month in Downeaster history (60,944 passengers), but also the first time Downeaster ridership surpassed 60,000 passengers in a month.
NNEPRA attributes the ridership surge to increased frequency to Freeport and Brunswick, improved reliability, as well as repeat riders.
“Amtrak’s Customer Satisfaction score of 91% suggests that people are not only riding the Downeaster, but are finding it to be enjoyable as well,” Amtrak noted in a press release. “When compared to Amtrak services throughout the country, passengers rank the Downeaster among the top services for friendliness, overall satisfaction and quality of on-board food service.”
“These results are particularly impressive,” said NNEPRA Chairman John Melrose. “We are committed to the continued growth of the Downeaster service and are working hard in 2020 to improve and expand transportation alternatives to further enhance mobility to our citizens and support economic growth for Maine Businesses.”