According to its schedule, a train leaves A and arrives at B. It does it everyday just like, well, trains should. We've all been there.

Now - what's the most natural word for this scheduled journey? Is it a "route from A to B"? "Route" seems to refer to a line in space... Or should we say "today's travel/journey has been interrupted by a bomb threat"? But aren't they too general? Service, maybe?

The context is as follows: "They ensure that the trains are both loaded and unloaded during/within one ______________ as often as possible."

  • "You must take the A Train / To go to Sugar Hill / way up in Harlem"
    – user98990
    Commented Feb 22, 2015 at 21:55
  • Yes. I feel that may be the one I've been looking for.
    – jules
    Commented Feb 22, 2015 at 22:05
  • +1, and thank you. Respectfully, if you "let it ride" for a while before making your official selection, you get more community participation, more answers, more commentary ... more rep.
    – user98990
    Commented Feb 22, 2015 at 22:37

4 Answers 4



How about, "the train [makes] two [runs] from London Paddington to Penzance and back - one in the morning, one in the afternoon".

Run noun plural noun: runs:

  1. a journey accomplished or route taken by a vehicle, aircraft, or boat, especially on a regular basis. "the New York-Washington run"

Synonyms: route, journey

See Google.com, “run” Link

Actual example,

The Paris Metro runs from roughly 05:30 till 00:40 (5:30am – 12:40am) Sunday thru Thursday and 05:30 – 01:40 on Fridays, Saturdays and on days before a holiday. Frequency between most trains range from 2 minutes during rush hour up to 8-10 minutes during off hours, holidays, and sundays.

See, Paris by Train Link


Train journey is a common word used to refer to a train service from one place to another:

  • A journey is the process of travelling from one place to another by land, air, or sea.
    • There is a direct train from London Paddington to Penzance. The journey takes around 5 hours. This service will save thousands of long-distance lorry journeys on Britain's roads.

Ngram: train journey, route, travel, passage.

  • What I mean is rather "journey as an abstract in a schedule". Like in "the train has two .............. from London Paddington to Penzance and back - one in the morning, one in the afternoon".
    – jules
    Commented Feb 22, 2015 at 21:55
  • Why would 'journey' not fit in your context?
    – user66974
    Commented Feb 22, 2015 at 21:58
  • I may be wrong, but I think "journey" has a "human feel" to it. I mean, people take journeys, trains just go :) Or am I surely wrong? :)
    – jules
    Commented Feb 22, 2015 at 22:03
  • Journey used in this context refers to the service ( from one place to another) performed by a train.
    – user66974
    Commented Feb 22, 2015 at 22:09

A railroad man would distinguish "routes" as "lines".

RR lines can use the same track to get from Destination A to Destination B as well as from Destination A to Destination C.


"Route seems to be a line is space"

I do not know where you got that misinformation, but it is a terribly inaccurate statement.

In industrial and commercial realms, the verb route means any action taken to convey or transport an item from any point to any other point. The noun route is the consequent path made available by that action.

For examples (-please don't edit to modify my use of plural-),

  • Dynamic routing of information packets often involve dynamically finding the best route, that may involve switching your session from sea route, terrestrial route, microwave towers and satellite transmissions, while you are chatting on your phone, or while your internet page is being fetched.

  • Service route management helps to plan and optimise the delivery of goods and services. At the beginning of the workday, the work route for a service personnel and her/his truck is planned for her/him. The personnel's skills certification is a factor in the types of assignment for the personnel. The route-of-the-day of the personnel could involve driving to point A to perform service 1, and then to point B to perform service 2, then driving to point C to deliver equipment to vendor for repair, driving to point D for his bagel joint, driving to point E, etc.

  • Service route management may change the route dynamically due to unplanned and unforeseen higher priorities.

  • In workflow management, a task can be routed (also dynamically) across various persons and machines to be processed, await approval, validation, etc.

  • In manufacturing process management, a process route can be convoluted, placed thro a loop, directed to external processing, subjected to contingency diversion.

  • In computing process management, a task too is routed thro very often convoluted paths.

Therefore, there should be no issue using the word route, as it conveys both simple line paths as well as convoluted and virtual paths.

For example, if you are the service personnel, your routing manager, may tell you,

  • "You have to collect the new equipment from vendor A, deliver the old equipment for repairs to vendor B, service the customer at company C, all within one route today."
  • Dear down-voter, is my information wrong? Commented Feb 23, 2015 at 0:27
  • 4
    A "route" is a path; that is, the detailed procedure for how to get from A to B. A train always follows the same route That is, a train route could be from Boston to Norfolk, but you wouldn't call each trip of the train along this line a "route". Commented Feb 23, 2015 at 0:28
  • Sorry, you have to accept the industrial and commercial use of the word route. No point sticking to your own nutshell. Commented Feb 23, 2015 at 0:28
  • Not when I'm talking about trains. Nobody (as far as I know) says "we are booked on the 7am route from Boston to Philadelphia". Commented Feb 23, 2015 at 0:30
  • What is the difference between a verizon, ups or usps truck vs a commuter train ? Your information on the term route is deprecated. Commented Feb 23, 2015 at 0:31

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