- Click ADD ITINERARY:
in the screen that pops up
- Enter Origin
and Destination station
- Select number
- Enter departure
- Click CONTINUE.
- If you
change your mind, click ABANDON to return to the main screen
the information has been retrieved from Amtrak (see below), a list of options
the ones you want to watch.
- Select individual options by clicking the
check box to the right
- Select all options for a given connection
by clicking the
"C" to the left of the connection
- Select all
options by clicking the check
box "Check All"
- "Unselect" an
option by clicking on a checked option.
all options for a given connection by
clicking the "U" to the left of the connection
- Unselect all
options by clicking the check
box "UNCheck All"
- Click "SAVE
to create an itinerary with the
- If you change your
mind, click "NEW ITINERARY"
to try again.
- To return to the
main screen, click EXIT.
The day after a train leaves the station, the itinerary is automatically
CURRENT FARES to see the current fares for the options you saved.
- Click FARE
HISTORY to see how prices have changed since you entered the
itinerary. The codes are:
- O = Original, i.e., when itinerary was
- I = Increase
- D = Decrease
- A = Available after being sold out
- S = Sold out after being available
- C = Train canceled after being available
- Click PAID RESERVATION to enter or view the price
of a ticket you have purchased. This will appear on alerts to
remind you whether the new prices is worthwhile.
- Click GO TO AMTRAK WEBSITE to purchase ticket
- Click REMOVE ITINERARY if you no longer want to
You can also
- Manually update
fares by clicking UPDATE PRICES
- A summary of the actions taken appears
- Current prices and history are updated, if necessary
- An alert is created, if appropriate.
- Click on "View Alerts"
- Only "new" alerts, i.e.,
those generated by the last
fare update will appear.
- To see all alerts, click
the "All" radio button
a log of automatic fare
updates. For each itinerary the date and time of the
update, the number of fare changes and number of alerts are displayed
- Click RETURN TO AMSNAG or EXIT to quit
You can schedule the program to automatically check fares in the
background once a day
and notify you if a fare has dropped or a sold out accommodation is
now available, or a train has been canceled. If one of these
events happens, an alert will pop up. To schedule
Technically, scheduling an update creates a "Windows Task"
named "Amsnag Farewatch VFP" that
executes a batch file called "monitor.bat".
- Click SCHEDULE AUTOMATIC UPDATES"
- Click "SCHEDULE UPDATE"
- Enter the time you wish the
update to occur in the form
hh:mm using a 24 hour clock. E.g. 01:00 is 1 AM; 13:00 is 1 PM.
- Click OK, or CANCEL if you change your mind
- You can change the time by clicking RESCHEDULE UPDATE.
- You can stop having fares updated in the background by clicking DELETE SHEDULED UPDATE.
you computer is turned off, hibernating, or sleeping when the update is
scheduled, it will not run. However, by tweaking the Windows
Task Scheduler, it will run when you next turn on the computer or awake
from hibernation or sleep.
Other parameters you can set are
- Open the Task scheduler by
clicking the WINDOWS key and typing "Schedule" in the search box, and
- Right Click
on Amsnag Farewatch VFP in
the list of tasks and select properties from the drop down list
- Select the Settings pane
- Check the Run task as soon as possible
after a scheduled start is missed check box.
- Click OK
and exit the task
If a fare has dropped or becomes
available after being sold out, or a train, formerly running, has been canceled, an alert
screen will appear. Clicking on a train will bring up the
Amtrak reservation web page. When the fare update runs, an
entry is made in the "update log" (see below).
- Select the Run whether
user is logged on or not radio button
- Check the Run with highest privileges
- Configure for your version of Windows
tab - Uncheck the Start
the task only if the computer is on AC power
- If you are familiar with the Windows Task
Scheduler, you can set the schedule for other than once a day, or even
set up more than one task.
- The fare watch program must not be open when the background fare check
takes place. If it is, a "File access denied" error message
appear in the log. To verify that is what
"memo" in the "Err Msg" column of the log.
Accessing the internet requires the file MsXmlx.dll be installed on your computer. Normally, you get it by default. But
if for some reason it is not on your machine, you can download and install it from here.