Early Deboarding

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AmtrakBlue

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First thing, you don’t know what your talking about, It’s never a bad idea, to inform Amtrak of any changes to your itinerary prior to your train departing. What happens if your attendant or Conductor forgets because they are occupied with other things. This ways it’s on paper. Here’s a little advice, in the future think before you make stupid statements.
Maybe you should get to know the members of this forum better before telling anyone they made a stupid suggestion.
As others have stated, to get off one stop early is not, usually, worth the potential the agent will screw up the change and charge you more.

I am also one who got off one stop early on a trip by just telling my SCA and the conductor of my plan. Should something have happened that I wasn’t able to get off I would have gotten off at my original destination and gotten a ride back to the previous station.
 

Brian Battuello

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And I speak from personal experience when I once shortened a trip and was charged more, fortunately in points. I was on my way to Emeryville/San Francisco and decided to get off in Sacramento, spend some time at the train museum and then take a local train for the rest of my trip. The agent cheerfully accepted my shortened route, and when the email came through I didn't notice the increase in points. It wasn't a huge amount, so I didn't argue about it but I will never tell Amtrak again about a shortened trip.
 

jis

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I must admit I have done dozens of early deboarding and a few staying on till the next stop beyond the original destination. I have never involved the Amtrak telephone agents. They are just a complete waste of time in those situations. Just worked with the train crew. In my experience that is the most effective and efficient way of handling those situations. So I tend to disagree with the lady/gentleman who started calling @OBS's suggestion stupid and all that. If someone asks me I just tell them what has worked the best for me over 30 years and well over 100,000 miles on Amtrak. But each to their own of course.
 

Brian Battuello

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I have once intentionally contacted the agent. My son and I were on a points trip from Boston to Chicago to Sacramento to Portland Oregon to meet the sensible family members there. The train was running about 8 hours late as we approached Salt Lake City. It was clear we wouldn't make the connection in Sacramento, so would have to spend an extra night there. By that time, we'd both had just about enough sitting in roomettes (hard to believe). I was able to score two cheap flights from SLC to Portland so we leapt off the train, Uber'd to the airport and were in Portland a few hours later.

On my way to the airport, I called the Amtrak agent and released the room from SLC to SAC and the Starlight room from SAC to POR, so they could sell it to someone else. The agent correctly said that we couldn't get a refund after travel had begun, but she made sure we weren't charged more.

My son still reminds me of the time I shook him awake at 5am to tell him we were getting off the train and onto a plane. Daddy is strange that way.
 

pennyk

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I must admit I have done dozens of early deboarding and a few staying on till the next stop beyond the original destination. I have never involved the Amtrak telephone agents. They are just a complete waste of time in those situations. Just worked with the train crew. In my experience that is the most effective and efficient way of handling those situations. So I tend to disagree with the lady/gentleman who started calling @OBS's suggestion stupid and all that. If someone asks me I just tell them what has worked the best for me over 30 years and well over 100,000 miles on Amtrak. But each to their own of course.
I agree with jis. I have been riding Amtrak for 50 years and almost 300,000 miles and, I too, have deboarded early dozens of times. I believe that @OBS is either a current or former Amtrak crew member and, if not relying on my personal experience, I would rely on her/his "professional" experience.
 

MARC Rider

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It is good to keep in mind that "checking baggage" makes it more difficult to deboard at a different destination than the one ticketed since the checked baggage is scheduled to be unloaded at a specific stop and may not be stored for convenient access at an earlier stop.
For some years I would take the #67 home from my New Hampshire skit trips. Actually, I would get a ticked from Boston to Washington, and go directly to the office. However, I had a ski bag and a large gear duffle that needed to be checked. The nice baggage guys at South Station would always allow me to check the bags to Baltimore instead of Washington. After work, I would ride back to Baltimore, usually on the MARC train, and pick up my bags, which were waiting for me (as was my wife with the car.)
 

uncleboots

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Maybe you should get to know the members of this forum better before telling anyone they made a stupid suggestion.
As others have stated, to get off one stop early is not, usually, worth the potential the agent will screw up the change and charge you more.

I am also one who got off one stop early on a trip by just telling my SCA and the conductor of my plan. Should something have happened that I wasn’t able to get off I would have gotten off at my original destination and gotten a ride back to the previous station.
No I don’t he or she had no right to criticize me for suggesting contacting Amtrak about a change in travel plans.
 

OBS

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First thing, you don’t know what your talking about, It’s never a bad idea, to inform Amtrak of any changes to your itinerary prior to your train departing. What happens if your attendant or Conductor forgets because they are occupied with other things. This ways it’s on paper. Here’s a little advice, in the future think before you make stupid statements.
Thanks for the compliment on my "stupid" statement. The only way to give the Sleeper attendant a destination on paper is by purchasing a ticket. If you wish to "change" your detraining station on paper you have to change your ticket. Once you start involving a reservation agent in changing your ticket you run the risk of either having your reservation cancelled and reissued at a new (higher) fare, you may lose the room you had assigned and end up in less desirable location or even having the train sell the last room while you are cancelling and rebooking your reservation. Not to mention hoping the agent can competently accomplish what you wish to do.

Having spent over 30 years dealing with Amtrak intimately on a daily basis, I learned long ago to use the K.I.S.S. method....and that means, in this situation, not calling the reservation office, but rather handling it on the train with the sleeper attendant and the Conductor. HTH
 

Qapla

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Uh ... it should be remembered that not everyone travels in a sleeper.

There is no reason that, when riding in coach (which many people do every day) and you only have carry-on baggage, you cannot simply get off where you want when the train stops without having to tell anyone. You simply get up and stand/walk with the ones who are queuing up to get off when the train stops - although telling the conductor is not a bad idea.

It is a bit different when you want to stay on until the next stop.
 

SubwayNut

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I've generally had good experiences getting off early. I've told the crew most of the time. Generally this has involved getting off Empire Service trains or the Adirondack in Yonkers instead of Penn Station. My parents live in Northern Manhattan so sometimes they would pick me up there by car or it would be Metro-North of the frequent Bee-Line bus to the subway to get home. By transit it was more convoluted than taking the A train but faster. For boaring trains I would always go to Penn Station.

The best example I can think of was back in Summer 2008 when I took the Adirondack from Montreal, I was ticketed to NYP, my parents offered to pick me up in Yonkers, as I was boarding in Montreal I told the crew I was going to Yonkers which resulted me in getting in the "shorts" car while everyone else going all the NYP had to board two completely full coaches at the other end of the train. I remember feeling so lucky since it meant I was in a largely empty car with two seats to myself, and not getting a seatmate until Hudson or Rhinecliff.

The only bad time I had involving Yonkers and getting off early was on Thanksgiving Day when we asked my grandmother to get off there so we could pick her up by car. She hadn't told the crew she wanted to get off in Yonkers and we had this moment of panic when the train stopped and there was no sign of her. The Amtrak conductors confirmed on their iPhones that they had lifted her ticket and we soon saw her waiting in a vestibule that wasn't opening and watched her slowly walk the 3 train cars to the open door. Had they known she was getting off in Yonkers they would have handled it differently.
 

jis

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Uh ... it should be remembered that not everyone travels in a sleeper.

There is no reason that, when riding in coach (which many people do every day) and you only have carry-on baggage, you cannot simply get off where you want when the train stops without having to tell anyone. You simply get up and stand/walk with the ones who are queuing up to get off when the train stops - although telling the conductor is not a bad idea.

It is a bit different when you want to stay on until the next stop.
I generally agree. As a footnote I'd add that it depends on where you decided to deboard though. For example if you decided to get off at Jesup instead of JAX, it is almost essential to tell the Conductor since he does have to make sure that a door is opened to let you off. Sometimes there is no on/off at Jesup and it is just a proverbial whistle stop. I have even seen a very slow roll through.
 

AmtrakBlue

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Uh ... it should be remembered that not everyone travels in a sleeper.

There is no reason that, when riding in coach (which many people do every day) and you only have carry-on baggage, you cannot simply get off where you want when the train stops without having to tell anyone. You simply get up and stand/walk with the ones who are queuing up to get off when the train stops - although telling the conductor is not a bad idea.

It is a bit different when you want to stay on until the next stop.
Unless you’re the only coach pax getting off and no coach pax are getting on.
 

Qapla

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There are always exceptions ... funny how often the emphasis is placed on these exceptions instead of the norm

If you are wanting to get off at a station that you may be the only one who wants to get off there - by all means, tell the conductor and the attendant.

However, if you are wanting to get off at a well used stop - just get off when the others are getting off even if you did not tell anyone you intended to do that.

That may cover the normal stops and the exceptions ... of course, you can always stay on till your ticketed stop and find some other way back .... there, that should cover all the bases (I think)
 

Qapla

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You are right ... making such a supposition is about the same as phrasing a comment that seems to assume everyone travels in a sleeper
 

anumberone

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First thing, you don’t know what your talking about, It’s never a bad idea, to inform Amtrak of any changes to your itinerary prior to your train departing. What happens if your attendant or Conductor forgets because they are occupied with other things. This ways it’s on paper. Here’s a little advice, in the future think before you make stupid statements.
Whatever works I guess. Although, having it on paper don’t mean the train will stop.
 
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