There’s a lot of hoo-ha in the media today about the idea of a high speed rail network along the Australian east coast – linking Brisbane through to Sydney through to Canberra and down to Melbourne.
With many WorldMark Resorts dotted along the east coast of Australia any rail network could, potentially, take you within easy reach of Coffs Harbour, Flynns Beach, Surfers Paradise, Sydney and, of course, the new Wyndham on William in Melbourne.
But… the question is, would we use it?
The overview of the plan I’ve read suggests any high speed rail system would not be completed until 2053 at the earliest and would cost about $114 billion.
Now – in the 1989 movie ‘Back to the Future Part II’ when Marty McFly travels to the 2015 future (not too distant now) transport options included hover boards and flying DeLorean’s. Whilst I’m not suggesting that hover boards are the transport solution of the future (although, fingers crossed – here’s hoping someone is working on it!) – 2053 does seem a far off future!
So, what are the factors that would influence us using this ‘East Coast Flyer’?
The high speed rail network would deliver three hour journeys between Sydney and Melbourne, and Sydney to Brisbane – which is extremely comparative to current flight times.
A three hour one way trip from Sydney to Melbourne in comfort sounds grand – but would additional stops or stations be added in between – stretching this commute time out? Would there be multiple services in a day – or would you book for either a AM or a PM commute?
As with anything, often our (commuter’s) enthusiasm to use something comes down to how much of our ‘hard earned’ we have to hand over. If a high speed rail network is comparable to air travel – and saves me the hassle of airport security – it’s a win in my books!
Whilst speed and cost are big contributing factors, for me, most things come down to how easy it is to use – high speed rail for me probably wouldn’t be any different. Will I be able to take as much luggage as I want? Will it be easy to navigate stations and carriages with children and a mountain of holiday luggage in tow? Will booking and payment be simple and straight forward?
A high speed rail network along the Australian east coast would definitely change the face of Australian transport – and I’m sure over the next few months we will hear the positives and negatives expounded in the media!
But for now – it’s fun to surmise how this change to transport could change the way we holiday in our WorldMark Resorts.
Perhaps the 2 week family holiday could look like 4 nights on the Sunny Gold Coast at Surfers Paradise, drinking in the sun and body surfing the waves, 3 nights at Coffs Harbour to let the kids go wild meeting porpoises and eating banana’s, 3 nights in Sydney to attend the latest Cirque du Soleil (just imagine what they will be doing in their 2053 shows), 2 nights in Melbourne to wine and dine, and then round off the extravaganza with a drive (or hover car – you never know!) to Ballarat to enjoy the serenity.
Or perhaps not – perhaps it simply means you can get to your favourite resort quicker, at an affordable price and with less bother – meaning the start and conclusion to your holiday don’t have to filled with stresses and worries.
What are your thoughts on the idea of a high speed rail network along the Australian east coast? Would you use it?