Connecting with the County

With the increase in the number of people working from home and the arrival of rural, high-speed internet, an increasing proportion of people moving to the County are mid-career professionals and entrepreneurs who regularly need to travel to Toronto.


If the prospect of driving in to the city (and back) in rush hour traffic for periodic meetings is discouraging you from living in the County, there are better ways to get there.

Via Rail offers 8 weekday trains from Belleville to Toronto starting at 6:14 am, with 7 trains returning from Toronto each day, with the last train leaving Union Station at 6:40 pm. There is wi-fi on board and fares start at $38.

Unlike frequent flyer points which are now pretty well worthless, the Via loyalty program really rewards frequent travelers: my wife used to travel to Toronto a lot and as a result we earned free tickets with our own suite on the cross-Canada train from Toronto to Vancouver.

Here’s the final tip: Via Rail business class is as good as Air Canada business class used to be 30 years ago.

When I go to Toronto, I get the cheapest possible fare in the morning when all I need is a cup of coffee and the internet. On the way home, however, I often succumb to business class and the prospect of a nice departure lounge, early pre-boarding, free wine and a real meal.

I’m not necessarily proud of it, but I do enjoy sipping my wine while contemplating the traffic at a standstill on the 401.