Traveling By Train | Amtrak’s New Rules

When you are traveling on Amtrak, they have new guidelines to follow. I called my Amtrak travel agent and asked how these new rules would affect me. The agent told me everything that you are going to read down below. These rules will last until the all clear is sounded and everyone is safe.

These are the Essential Service Plans for Amtrak.

While Amtrak continues to operate across the nation, they have adjusted their train services due to significantly reduced demand. Make sure to go to Amtrak mobile app to get the most up-to-date schedules are available when booking your trip.

Before your Amtrak trips, you are encouraged to download the Amtrak app, allowing passengers to scan an e-ticket before boarding and receive gate and track information on your device at certain stations.

Customers are encouraged to arrive 30 minutes before departure and 60 minutes if in need of ticketing and/or baggage assistance.

Amtrak has enhanced cleaning frequency on commonly used surfaces in stations. On board, hand-washing is available in each car’s restrooms.

All Amtrak customer and employees are required to wear face masks or an alternative facial covering while in stations. These coverings can be removed when customers are in their private rooms or seated alone.

Customers can use an “automatic door open” button with their foot when they move between cars.

What to Expect

Due to service reductions, the café service will be suspended on select trains, and all overnight trains, except the Auto Train, will be offering flexible dining. Other services may be impacted as circumstances change. If your station is closed, remain waiting in your vehicle and check train status in the Amtrak app or on

Amtrak is accepting only cashless payments.

Travel Changes

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

Ticket Changes and/or Cancellations

Changes have become more flexible, Amtrak is waiving all change fees for reservations made by August 31, 2020, including reservations booked with points. To modify a reservation, log in to your account, go to ‘Modify Trip’ on, or find your reservation from your account on the home screen in the Amtrak app. A fare difference may apply to your new itinerary.

When it comes to cancellations, Amtrak is waiving all cancellation fees for reservations made by August 31, 2020. This includes reservations booked with points. If you want to cancel your reservation without a fee, you must call 1-800-USA-RAIL and speak with an agent (not available via or the Amtrak app).

Amtrak is limiting their bookings. Most trains allow for more physical distancing in seating areas. When traveling alone, you may use the seat next to you for your personal belongings, friends and family members will easily find seats together.

Amtrak offers private rooms on many routes for customers seeking privacy and space on their short trips and overnight travels.

Operating on a reduced schedule

Acela (Boston – Washington, DC)

Adirondack (New York – Montreal): No service north of Albany.

Amtrak Hartford Line (New Haven, CT – Springfield, MA)

Amtrak Thruway Bus routes

Capitol Corridor (San Jose – Sacramento)

Cascades (Eugene – Vancouver, B.C.): No service north of Seattle.

Carolinian (Charlotte – New York)

Downeaster (Boston – Brunswick, ME)

Empire Service (New York – Niagara Falls)

Ethan Allen Express (New York – Rutland, VT): No service north of Albany.

Illini/Saluki (Chicago – Carbondale)

Illinois Zephyr/Carl Sandburg (Chicago – Quincy)

Keystone Service (Harrisburg – New York): Will operate between

Philadelphia and Harrisburg only.

Lincoln Service (Chicago – St. Louis)

Maple Leaf (New York – Toronto): No service west of Niagara Falls, NY.

Missouri River Runner (St. Louis – Kansas City)

Northeast Regional (Boston – New York – Washington, DC – Virginia)

Pacific Surfliner (San Luis Obispo – San Diego)

San Joaquins (Bakersfield – Oakland and Sacramento)

Silver Meteor/Silver Star (New York – Miami)

Valley Flyer (New Haven, CT – Greenfield, MA)

Vermonter (Washington – St. Albans): No service north of New Haven

(Monday-Saturday) and no service on Sundays.

Wolverine (Chicago – Pontiac)


Temporarily suspended services

Pere Marquette (Chicago – Grand Rapids)

Piedmont (Charlotte – Raleigh)

For more information about Amtrak train travel

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