I just bought my Amtrak ticket to Washington. It ended up being just over $200. This is a little more than I would have liked, but I really need to see my family. A plane ticket would have cost nearly twice that, and a bus ticket was only $40 less.
Given that I will leave in the middle of the night, I feel more comfortable going by Amtrak than by bus. The bus station in my departure city is in a pretty bad part of town. I once got followed there by three twenty year olds in a car while I was walking from a Vietnamese market to the bank. I got into my car just seconds before they were at my door. I definitely do not want to repeat that experience.
I can't leave my car there, so I'm going to have my uncle drop me off. I don't want my grandma driving me over there that late at night. I'll be carrying mace, just to be doubly safe.
I've never ridden on Amtrak before. This should be fun!