Amtrak Service Notices & Travel Tips
Page updated on 9/25/2020
Highway 50 Closure Affects Thruway Bus Service
Effective Sept. 18 through Oct. 2, 2020
Due to the replacement of the Echo Summit Sidehill Viaduct, Highway 50 will be closed from September 18 through October 2 causing Amtrak Thruway service to detour via Highway 88/89 to serve South Lake Tahoe.
Schedule Changes Buses 3424, 3447, 3474 and 3487 will serve South Lake Tahoe only, not stopping at Placerville, Stateline and Stateline Transit Center.
For more information on this project, visit way2tahoe.com. Questions? Please contact the Capitol Corridor at (877)-974- 3322.
Amtrak RideReserveSM Program Begins For Multi-Ride Customers on Reserved Routes
Effective September 14, 2020
Amtrak is taking a new step to make certain our customers can distance themselves from each other on our busiest trains in the Northeast Corridor and on the Amtrak National Network. Effective for travel beginning September 14th, customers with Multi-Ride tickets will confirm their travel on a specific service on a specific date.
With Amtrak RideReserveSM, Monthly, Ten-Ride and Six-Ride tickets will now require confirmations for travel. Choosing your trips ahead of time helps manage capacity and promote physical distancing on every train as well as keeping customers informed about gate and track information, schedule changes and more.
Terms and Conditions: Reserving a Trip
- Confirmation is required prior to boarding any reserved train/thruway bus
- Confirmations are allowed as early as 14 days prior to departure or as late as scheduled departure through Amtrak.com or the mobile app, or until actual departure via an Amtrak agent
- Up to 2 confirmations per travel day, once in each direction
- Confirmations must be made between the origin and destination selected while purchasing the pass
- Not available on sold out trains
- Rides will continue to be deducted from your Multi-Ride ticket when the ticket is scanned on board. Amtrak RideReserveSM confirmations do not deduct rides from your multi ride ticket.
- Passengers with a disability, customers who want to upgrade and customers who want to carry on additional items will continue to book a reservation through an agent
- Applies to customers that purchased Multi-Ride tickets prior to and after September 14
Canceling a Trip:
- Confirmations made using Amtrak RideReserveSM may be canceled through Amtrak.com, the mobile app or an Amtrak agent until actual departure without penalty
- Current Multi-Ride ticket refund rules will continue to apply.
Please note: Ten-Ride tickets are no longer transferable on the Heartland Flyer and Cascades to support physical distancing.
CTrail Tickets No Longer Accepted Between New Haven and Springfield
Effective Sept. 14, 2020
With the implementation of the RideReserve program, Amtrak will no longer honor CTrail tickets on Northeast Regional Trains operating between New Haven, CT and Springfield, MA.
Passengers wishing to ride these trains will require an Amtrak ticket to provide a consistent experience on our Northeast Regional service. Amtrak will continue to accept CTrail tickets on Amtrak Hartford Line and Valley Flyer trains.
Amtrak Provides Real-time Look at Seat Availability
To provide customers with an extra level of confidence and security while traveling, Amtrak has made a few updates to its website and mobile app. Now, when booking, you can easily see how full your reserved train will be (i.e. 20 % full). The percentage is displayed in real-time when customers search for their train.
When searching for travel, customers will see a volume percentage next to each route. This will give customers the opportunity to book a route that is less crowded. The percentage shown represents the proportion of seats sold based on the total number of seats on the train. These percentage numbers adjust dynamically in real time as more passengers make reservations.
“Prioritizing health and safety, we continue to provide customers with new, innovative measures that promote physical distancing and contactless travel,” said Amtrak President and CEO Bill Flynn. “We have studied, analyzed and made improvements to the Amtrak travel experience – from beginning to end – for the safety and health of our workforce and travelers.”
We’re limiting the number of travelers on reserved trains to allow for more physical distancing in seating areas. Families and friends traveling together will easily find seats next to each other. If traveling alone, customers may place their personal belongings on the seat next to them. Several contact-free and convenience measures have been implemented into the Amtrak app. Features include:
- Capacity indicator: When searching for travel, customers will see a volume percentage next to each route option so they can get insight into specific trains that are less crowded. The percentage displayed is available in real-time when customers search for their train. These percentage numbers adjust dynamically in real time as more passengers make reservations.
- Seamless gate service: To reduce crowds at departure boards, Amtrak app users can receive gate and track information via push notifications at select stations. The home screen also includes gate and track information for applicable reservations (when published).
- Contact-free travel: Customers can book, board, check train status and access information from the convenience and safety of a mobile device. Amtrak encourages boarding with eTickets, which conductors scan from the Amtrak app.
- Get Info at Your Fingertips: Customers can check station information, route details, service alerts and more.
This update will supplement Amtrak’s proactive efforts to deliver a new standard of travel that includes enhanced cleaning protocols, contactless amenities, social distancing on board and in stations, required face coverings and sophisticated air filtration.
As of August 31 a total of 1,213 TravelReview Surveys have been submitted
As you travel, please help us promote the Travel Review with other rail passengers. As you encounter passengers who want to make their positive and negative opinions known, please direct them to www.railpassengers.org/Travel Review. All participants will remain anonymous. If you encounter any problems with the Travel Review, or have any questions, please send an email to [email protected]
Do You Need More TravelReview Feedback Cards?
Please help us to spread the word. We need your help in engaging other passengers when you travel and let them know that their feedback is welcomed by RailPax. To facilitate this sharing of information the TravelReview Feedback Card is now available for you to download and print for regular usage. The card can be given to fellow passengers to introduce the work that RailPax is doing as well as our desire to have their feedback. The cards can also be left behind in stations as you pass through.
The template is in a .pdf format and will open in Adobe document cloud. First download the file and save it to your desktop for easy access. Then print as needed. The original template is formatted for Avery 5871 or 5371 cardstock which are both 2” x 3½” business card formats. Any brand cardstock should function as long as the dimensions match.
If you experience any problems in accessing the file, please send an email to [email protected]
"The National Association of Railroad Passengers has done yeoman work over the years and in fact if it weren’t for NARP, I'd be surprised if Amtrak were still in possession of as a large a network as they have. So they've done good work, they're very good on the factual case."
Robert Gallamore, Director of Transportation Center at Northwestern University and former Federal Railroad Administration official, Director of Transportation Center at Northwestern University
November 17, 2005, on The Leonard Lopate Show (with guest host Chris Bannon), WNYC New York.