NCDOT Intercity Rail Service Sets New Ridership Record

The North Carolina Department of Transportation said its “NC By Train” intercity passenger rail service set a new ridership record in 2023; carrying over 641,000 passengers, which is 23 percent higher than the initial record set in 2022 with 522,000 passengers.

​[Above photo by NCDOT]

“We’re pleased that NC By Train continues to grow and be an important transportation option for North Carolinians,” said NCDOT Secretary Joey Hopkins in a statement.

“Based on the success of the last two years, we are continuing to explore opportunities to further increase frequencies and expand service to communities across the state,” he added.

Photo by NCDOT

Contributing to the services growth and popularity were the addition of a fifth-round trip between Raleigh and Charlotte in July 2023 and numerous events and special stops, such as the North Carolina State Fair, the Lexington Barbeque Festival, and football games.

NCDOT added that NC By Train offers a variety of everyday discounts for children, students, active military personnel, veterans and seniors and Share Fare, which allows groups of up to eight people to save money with each additional ticket that is purchased.

A recent survey commissioned by Amtrak indicates there continues to be “strong support from American voters” for continued passenger rail investments, including for rail infrastructure renewal and train service expansion.

Conducted by the Mellman Group and commissioned by Amtrak to better understand America’s interest in intercity passenger rail service, the survey findings show “consistent support” for passenger rail across geographic location, age, race, and gender.

Related articles