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Whats the earliest you can board the train?

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Steveschoey

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We're looking at going from San Antonio to Tucson. The train arrives in San Antonio at 9.55pm then leaves at 2.45 am. If we book a sleeper, can we get on the train before midnight to get some sleep, or do we have to wait?
 

Bob Dylan

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We're looking at going from San Antonio to Tucson. The train arrives in San Antonio at 9.55pm then leaves at 2.45 am. If we book a sleeper, can we get on the train before midnight to get some sleep, or do we have to wait?
Not to sound like a Lawyer, but it depends.

Are you riding in the #421 or #1 Sleeper?

If you are on the # 1 Sleeper ( NOL-LAX, Front of the Train between the Transdorm and Diner) you CAN board upon arrival soon as the arriving passengers are off the Train.( #1 is often Early into SAS)

If you're on the #421 Sleeper ( CHI-SAS-LAX), it has to be switched along with the CHI-SAS-LAX Coach from #21 to the rear of the #1 consist upon artival into SAS. They also change Crews including the #421 SCA upon arrival into SAS with a SAS-LAX SCA replacing the CHI-SAS attendant.

Some thru passengers stay on the Train during the Dwell and Switching, some get Off and visit the Riverwalk and Dennys close to the Station during the 2-3 Hour Dwell.( the Small SAS Station is NOT a very Comfortable place to hang out! awaiting boarding)
 

Devil's Advocate

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We're looking at going from San Antonio to Tucson. The train arrives in San Antonio at 9.55pm then leaves at 2.45 am. If we book a sleeper, can we get on the train before midnight to get some sleep, or do we have to wait?
In my experience sleeper car passengers departing San Antonio can board almost anytime (assuming arrivals have disembarked first). That being said, there's always a chance to get turned away if the train is running late with rushed staff or you encounter a disagreeable sleeper attendant. I've also boarded between shifts with nobody checking my ticket, in which case you'll want to make sure you tell someone you're on board before the train leaves.
 

ehbowen

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Mar 22, 2011
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Houston, Texas
If you book the 421 sleeper and make a short drive up the road to San Marcos, you can most definitely sleep through the long stop in San Antonio...

Edit To Add: If you change your ticket to San Marcos-Tucson, of course. And, also, an on-time or even close to on-time departure from San Marcos is not guaranteed.
 

Devil's Advocate

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If you book the 421 sleeper and make a short drive up the road to San Marcos, you can most definitely sleep through the long stop in San Antonio...
The problem with this is (1) it's a bit too far for a casual drop-off, but if you bring your car you'll need to leave it in a lot that (2) doesn't look that safe and (3) requires you to put a "burgle me" sign up saying how long it will be until you return.
 

manchacrr

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Nov 17, 2008
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Baton Rouge, LA
We're looking at going from San Antonio to Tucson. The train arrives in San Antonio at 9.55pm then leaves at 2.45 am. If we book a sleeper, can we get on the train before midnight to get some sleep, or do we have to wait?
Thanks guys, appreciate the assistance. We'll probably be on the #1 Sleeper.
If you are on the #1 sleeper, the train will not arrive until 12:45 AM. #21/421, the Texas Eagle, arrives into San Antonio at 9:55 PM. #1, the Sunset Limited, arrives at 12:45 AM. If both trains are on time, you should be able to board around 1:00 AM
 

Lonestar648

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May 17, 2015
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I have boarded in San Marcos, having a friend drive me to the station from north SA. Yes, I offer to pay, even buy dinner, but he always refuses. I prefer to be settled in my room when the train arrives SAS. Usually, I don’t wake up during the car switching, which is good for me since I like to be up and dressed to watch the sunrise.
 

Bob Dylan

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I have boarded in San Marcos, having a friend drive me to the station from north SA. Yes, I offer to pay, even buy dinner, but he always refuses. I prefer to be settled in my room when the train arrives SAS. Usually, I don’t wake up during the car switching, which is good for me since I like to be up and dressed to watch the sunrise.
:cool: My old hometown! I used to catch the Mopac and Katy Passenger Trains as a kid @ the 2 Seperate Depots when San Marcos had only 4,000 people.😷
 
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