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COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Pandemic: Amtrak-related Discussion

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pennyk

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MODERATOR NOTE (again): Many posts that were not on the specific topic of Amtrak and coronavirus (but were related to the coronavirus) were moved to the general coronavirus thread in the AU Lounge. Staff is reviewing some of the posts that may be considered political and those posts may be removed. Completely off topic posts were removed.

Thank you for your cooperation.
MODERATOR COMMENT TO MODERATOR NOTE: I am bumping this post. Off topic posts continue to be removed. The AU Lounge is the location for discussing topics that are not rail or transportation related.
Please keep on topic.
 

crescent-zephyr

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Oct 21, 2015
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That should really help things along, especially losing sleepers. I know they're more labor intensive, but they are also more isolated so that folks can segregate a bit.
That’s what I was thinking... if I was going to travel right now a sleeper is pretty isolated. If I wiped everything down with a Clorox wipe I wouldn’t be tooooo worried about it.

But the coaches will be pretty close to empty anyways so it may not matter.
 

JLC

Train Attendant
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Jul 23, 2019
Messages
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I had to cancel our first train trip due to the Coronavirus and my whole group is so disappointed. I work in healthcare (medical laboratory technician) and if I leave the service area of the health system I work for, I would have to report my itinerary and could be forced to do a 14-day self quarantine before I could go back to work. Not to mention most of the attractions we wanted to see are closed down. My biggest worry, and this is in general and not just traveling, is all five of us are 60+ and three of us would be considered high risk due to health conditions. It just seems prudent to be cautious right now.
 

thully

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All Midwest corridors are being cut to one daily round-trip, except for the Pere Marquette which is cancelled entirely and Lincoln Service which retains a morning and evening round-trip.
Saw that - it looks like 351 and 352 are the only Wolverines running. Surprised they didn’t run 354 instead of 352, as that is the one with connections from LD trains eastbound (351 does connect with LD trains westbound). Staying home myself, but it would seem like they would want to preserve connections for those who *do* need to travel...
 

zephyr17

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neroden

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I fully expect all nonessential travel to be shut down soon, at least for a little while while they try to get mass testing up and running. Everything I was planning to take the train to before the AU Gathering has been cancelled. We're already in self-isolation, since Saturday, because Bitsy's in a high risk group. So are my parents, separately. Everyone who can should be because any of us could be asymptomatic carriers -- there are estimated to be lots and lots of asymptomatic carriers.

RPA (NARP) has a campaign to get Congress to provide emergency funding so Amtrak can turn the lights back on when the crisis is over. Please contact your Congresscritters in support of it. Also contact them in support of the same thing for the local rail agencies like NY MTA, NJ Transit, MBTA, etc. They all need it.

I agree with those who say that coach should come off LD trains, not sleepers. Sleeper is probably the safest way to travel right now and should be availble for essential travel
 

kdeschner

Train Attendant
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May 1, 2015
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I just travelled on the Capitol Ltd. Wednesday and Yesterday from WAS-CHI. Sounds like the SSL is coming off the consist and the diner will act like a CCC again with the cafe and flex - dining in the same car. After hearing this, I think it’s safe to assume this will also happen on the CONO which runs with a CCC and is flex - dining as well. Staff I talked to stated that the same was happening on that route. It would also be interesting to see if this would happen on the Eagle due to it running with a CCC, but also with a full dinner menu...
 

crescent-zephyr

Conductor
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I just travelled on the Capitol Ltd. Wednesday and Yesterday from WAS-CHI. Sounds like the SSL is coming off the consist and the diner will act like a CCC again with the cafe and flex - dining in the same car. After hearing this, I think it’s safe to assume this will also happen on the CONO which runs with a CCC and is flex - dining as well. Staff I talked to stated that the same was happening on that route. It would also be interesting to see if this would happen on the Eagle due to it running with a CCC, but also with a full dinner menu...
How was the trip? Did it feel weird traveling right now or still relaxing and enjoyable?

I’m so tempted to take a ride while I still can, but I know I probably shouldn’t.
 

brianpmcdonnell17

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Mar 5, 2016
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Chicago, Illinois
How was the trip? Did it feel weird traveling right now or still relaxing and enjoyable?

I’m so tempted to take a ride while I still can, but I know I probably shouldn’t.
I just arrived Chicago yesterday on the EB from Portland. Occupancy in the Portland sleeper was 25% at most and every group got their own table in the dining car. It was definitely a little weird but actually very enjoyable with all the space. The most stressful part was the day leading up to departure hoping the train wouldn't be cancelled.
 

pennyk

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AGAIN please keep on topic. Several posts were moved to a new thread regarding axle counts and several were moved to the general coronavirus thread in the AU Lounge.

Thanks for your cooperation (again)
 
Last edited:

Thirdrail7

Conductor
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They cut off the last Acela trips and a few more NEC trains.

Service Adjustments Due to Coronavirus
March 20, 2020, 3:15 pm ET
While Amtrak continues to operate across the nation, we have adjusted some services due to significantly reduced demand in key markets. The most up-to-date schedules are available when booking your trip on Amtrak.com and in the mobile app.

Service Modifications

Reduced schedules
Northeast Corridor: Operating approximately 40% of typical weekday schedules, including Northeast Regional and Acela service.
Adirondack (New York – Montreal): No service north of Albany
Amtrak Cascades (Eugene – Vancouver, B.C.): No service north of Seattle
Amtrak Hartford Line (New Haven, CT – Springfield, Mass.)
Amtrak Thruway Bus routes
Capitol Corridor (San Jose – Sacramento) as of Saturday, March 21
Downeaster (Boston – Brunswick, Maine)
Empire Service (New York – Niagara Falls)
Ethan Allen Express (New York – Rutland, Vermont)
Hiawatha (Chicago – Milwaukee)
Illini/Saluki (Chicago – Carbondale) as of Saturday, March 21
Illinois Zephyr/Carl Sandburg Chicago – Quincy) as of Saturday, March 21
Lincoln Service (Chicago – St. Louis) as of Saturday, March 21
Maple Leaf (New York – Toronto): No service west of Niagara Falls, NY
Valley Flyer (New Haven, CT – Greenfield, Mass.)
Wolverine (Chicago – Pontiac)
Canceled services
Keystone Service (Harrisburg – New York)
Pennsylvanian trains (New York – Pittsburgh)
Pere Marquette (Chicago – Grand Rapids)
Winter Park Express (Denver – Winter Park Resort)
Due to service reductions, some stations may not be staffed. If the station is closed, please proceed to the platform to board your train.

Other services may also be impacted as circumstances change. Café service will also be suspended on select trains.

Customers with reservations on trains that are being modified will be contacted and typically be accommodated on trains with similar departure times or another day.

Amtrak is waiving change fees on all existing or new reservations made before April 30, 2020. Simply log in to your account or go to Modify Trip on Amtrak.com, or find your reservation from your account on the home screen in the Amtrak app. A fare difference may apply to your new itinerary. If you want to cancel your reservation with no fee, you must call 800-USA-RAIL and speak with an agent (not available via Amtrak.com or the app).

I just travelled on the Capitol Ltd. Wednesday and Yesterday from WAS-CHI. Sounds like the SSL is coming off the consist and the diner will act like a CCC again with the cafe and flex - dining in the same car. After hearing this, I think it’s safe to assume this will also happen on the CONO which runs with a CCC and is flex - dining as well. Staff I talked to stated that the same was happening on that route. It would also be interesting to see if this would happen on the Eagle due to it running with a CCC, but also with a full dinner menu...
I'm pretty sure you will see the consists reduced to match demand. They'll probably resemble the winter line up.
 

v v

Conductor
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Dec 4, 2012
Messages
1,288
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UK / France
Question for a friend.

He has a ticket for the Southwest Chief on the 31 March, Lax to CHI. Is there any inside information as to whether all rail transport will be stopped or are the major LD routes almost guaranteed to run?

Thanks
 

crescent-zephyr

Conductor
Joined
Oct 21, 2015
Messages
2,721
Question for a friend.

He has a ticket for the Southwest Chief on the 31 March, Lax to CHI. Is there any inside information as to whether all rail transport will be stopped or are the major LD routes almost guaranteed to run?

Thanks
The way things are going nothing is a guarantee. Does he plan on doing anything in Chicago other than take another train back? I think Illinois is on total lock down.

I’ve got nothing else to do so I’ve thought about just riding amtrak around.... I feel like I would be pretty safe in a sleeper with some Clorox wipes to disinfect it.

But I don’t want to get stranded somewhere and have a difficult time getting back... especially with Florida starting to mandatory close hotels in some areas.
 

v v

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Dec 4, 2012
Messages
1,288
Location
UK / France
The way things are going nothing is a guarantee. Does he plan on doing anything in Chicago other than take another train back? I think Illinois is on total lock down.

I’ve got nothing else to do so I’ve thought about just riding amtrak around.... I feel like I would be pretty safe in a sleeper with some Clorox wipes to disinfect it.

But I don’t want to get stranded somewhere and have a difficult time getting back... especially with Florida starting to mandatory close hotels in some areas.
No it's not a vacation, just getting from A to B. He would be catching the Lake Shore I think on arrival day, or the next day.

Like your idea, sounds like an adventure.
 

MccfamschoolMom

Service Attendant
Joined
Feb 28, 2020
Messages
225
I wonder what the stations are like? Any services open? Are the lounges open?
Restaurants in IL are restricted to take-out/drivethrough/delivery, so the fast-food places in Chicago Union Station may still be open, but no tables to sit at right next to the restaurant.
 
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