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Updates on Chicago Boarding?


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#1 Acela150

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Posted 14 March 2017 - 11:56 PM

I recall about 6 months ago or so Amtrak began a new boarding process in Chi town. 

 

Can't really recall much of the details. But was wondering how things are going with this new boarding process. 


These posts are my views and opinions.

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"Mainline 66W Recrew On Board at Abrams ready to head east when you can handle us, Ok 66W, ok on signal indication at Norris, take it to the Falls to wait for the window"

#2 Devil's Advocate

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 12:08 AM

[Are There Any] Updates on Chicago Boarding [?]


FTFY.


We've got provisions and lots of beer. The key word is survival on the new frontier. 


#3 Acela150

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 01:16 AM

Thanks for the unnecessary grammar correction DA. It's either you have something or not.
These posts are my views and opinions.

Donate your spare time! Be a Volunteer Firefighter!
 
"Mainline 66W Recrew On Board at Abrams ready to head east when you can handle us, Ok 66W, ok on signal indication at Norris, take it to the Falls to wait for the window"

#4 AmtrakBlue

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 05:06 AM

Steve, your title reads as if YOU have updates.

2011: Jun: WIL=>WAS=>WIL (NER) // Nov: WIL=>WAS=>CHI=>PRO (NER=>CL=>CZ)
2012: Apr: WIL=>WAS=>WIL (NER) // May(NTD): WIL=>PHL=>WIL (NER) / PHL=>PAO=>PHL (Keystone) // Aug: WIL=>WAS (NER) / BWI=>WIL (NER) // Oct(Gathering): PHL=>WIL (NER) / PHL=>HAR=>PHL (Keystone) / SEPTA, NJT, PATCO, River Line, Princeton Dinky
2013: May(NTD): WIL=>WAS=>WIL (NER)  // Oct (Gathering): WIL=>CHI (Card) / CHI=>MKE=>GLN=>CHI() / CHI=>JOL=>CHI () / CHI=>WIL(CL=>NER) / CTA, Metra. SEPTA (WIL=>NRK) // Nov:  PHL=>PHL (Autumn Express) 
2014: May(NTD):  WIL=>PHL=>WIL(NER) // May:  WIL=>BOS=>WIL(NER) day trip

2014: Oct(Gathering): WIL=>NYP=>TOL(pd-NER=>LSL) / TOL=>CHI=>LAX=>EMY(pts-LSL=>SWC=>CS) / EMY=>CHI=>TOL (pts-CZ-CL) / TOL=>WAS=>WIL(pd-CL=>NER)
2015: May: CHI=>CIN(pd-Card) / CIN=>WIL(pts Card)
2015;  Oct(Gathering):  WIL=>WAS(Acela) / ALX=>WAS(NER) / WAS=>BAL(Acela) / WAS=>WIL(NER)

2016: Mar: WIL=>WAS=>WIL (NER)  // Oct:  WIL=>NYP=>NYP=>WIL (Autumn Express) 


#5 HenryK

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 07:00 AM

As a retired professional grammar n a z i I have to agree with DA's correction but must say it indeed is unnecessary. The original title was clear. The revised title does mislead.


Edited by HenryK, 15 March 2017 - 07:00 AM.


#6 Devil's Advocate

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 09:55 AM

Steve, your title reads as if YOU have updates.


Betty has it right. My point was that you used a statement to represent a question. I clicked on the thread curious to read your updates only to realize you didn't have any.


As a retired professional grammar n a z i I have to agree with DA's correction but must say it indeed is unnecessary. The original title was clear. The revised title does mislead.


This has less to do with grammar than it does with clear and concise communication.

We've got provisions and lots of beer. The key word is survival on the new frontier. 


#7 pennyk

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 11:54 AM

Moderator comment:

 

A question mark was added to the title.  Hopefully the edited title will encourage answers to OP's inquiry (as opposed to grammar lessons).  :)


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#8 Tennessee Traveler

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 02:16 PM

Moderator comment:

 

A question mark was added to the title.  Hopefully the edited title will encourage answers to OP's inquiry (as opposed to grammar lessons).   :)

 

Thank you,pennyK.  While I usually board from the Metropolitan Lounge this topic is of interest to me.  Having passed through Chicago in October and January after this check in process began, I observed that it seemed to be working smoothly.  Only people who this really applies to are those that in the "general boarding" group that board from the Main Hall.  It is similar to Southwest Airlines in that you get a boarding card and line up by group letter and then number within that letter all while still in the main hall.  Military, those needing accessibility assistance, and the "over 65" people boarding coach get priority boarding and should report to the appropriate waiting area for that group.  Sleeper and business class board from the Metropolitan Lounge.  Seems to be working and has cut the crowding in the waiting areas adjacent to the concourses.  



#9 Devil's Advocate

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 02:37 PM

It is similar to Southwest Airlines in that you get a boarding card and line up by group letter and then number within that letter all while still in the main hall.


Southwest Airlines has screens and marked dividers right at the gate that make it clear where you need to be. Is that how Amtrak coach boarding is setup in the Great Hall? Does each group get a separate kindergarten march or does this only apply to the first group and then all other groups simply follow the previous group? Or do they follow signs to the boarding gate on their own?

 

Sleeper and business class board from the Metropolitan Lounge.  Seems to be working and has cut the crowding in the waiting areas adjacent to the concourses.


Is the move to the train handled by a staff member guiding sleeper passengers to the gate or do they simply walk themselves? If sleeper passengers walk themselves does the lounge attendant alert the gate attendants first? Are the sleeper passengers identified by cards or stickers or does the gate attendant need to be coaxed into letting each person through?

Edited by Devil's Advocate, 15 March 2017 - 02:39 PM.

We've got provisions and lots of beer. The key word is survival on the new frontier. 


#10 Big Iron

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 05:20 PM

 

It is similar to Southwest Airlines in that you get a boarding card and line up by group letter and then number within that letter all while still in the main hall.


Southwest Airlines has screens and marked dividers right at the gate that make it clear where you need to be. Is that how Amtrak coach boarding is setup in the Great Hall? Does each group get a separate kindergarten march or does this only apply to the first group and then all other groups simply follow the previous group? Or do they follow signs to the boarding gate on their own?

 

Sleeper and business class board from the Metropolitan Lounge.  Seems to be working and has cut the crowding in the waiting areas adjacent to the concourses.


Is the move to the train handled by a staff member guiding sleeper passengers to the gate or do they simply walk themselves? If sleeper passengers walk themselves does the lounge attendant alert the gate attendants first? Are the sleeper passengers identified by cards or stickers or does the gate attendant need to be coaxed into letting each person through?

 

A staff member does not walk Met lounge passengers to the gate.  The gate agents do know they are coming.  At least this is the way it was two week ago when I boarded 30 from the lounge.  Even though the gate agent knew we were coming she still held us back and announced boarding for "priority" passengers; seniors, families with children and military.  The gate agent was corrected by another and told the sleeper pax to proceed.   I'm not 100% sure but I believe the former coach waiting area is now the priority boarding area with the Great Hall used as waiting area for coach pax.  


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#11 Acela150

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 06:32 PM

My apologies DA. 


These posts are my views and opinions.

Donate your spare time! Be a Volunteer Firefighter!
 
"Mainline 66W Recrew On Board at Abrams ready to head east when you can handle us, Ok 66W, ok on signal indication at Norris, take it to the Falls to wait for the window"

#12 blackpup

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 07:12 PM

 

Moderator comment:

 

A question mark was added to the title.  Hopefully the edited title will encourage answers to OP's inquiry (as opposed to grammar lessons).   :)

 

Thank you,pennyK.  While I usually board from the Metropolitan Lounge this topic is of interest to me.  Having passed through Chicago in October and January after this check in process began, I observed that it seemed to be working smoothly.  Only people who this really applies to are those that in the "general boarding" group that board from the Main Hall.  It is similar to Southwest Airlines in that you get a boarding card and line up by group letter and then number within that letter all while still in the main hall.  Military, those needing accessibility assistance, and the "over 65" people boarding coach get priority boarding and should report to the appropriate waiting area for that group.  Sleeper and business class board from the Metropolitan Lounge.  Seems to be working and has cut the crowding in the waiting areas adjacent to the concourses.  

 

 


Edited by blackpup, 15 March 2017 - 07:13 PM.


#13 Sauve850

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 07:45 PM

Announcement is made re boarding. Staff stands at exit door and points Met Lounge passengers in direction of gate area. Tells you your gate number. Hold your ticket up to the gate agent and proceed to the train. Very easy procedure.



#14 gatelouse

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 08:30 PM

Yes, the former coach waiting lounge is now for priority boarding. Yes, the lines in the Great Hall are managed Southwest style and grouped by boarding number.

(Not really an update; these observations as of late October.)

Edited by gatelouse, 15 March 2017 - 08:31 PM.

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#15 Devil's Advocate

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 09:50 PM

My apologies DA.

 
No problem. I've been looking at a trip involving Chicago and wanted to know as well. So far it sounds like things are working fairly smoothly in C-town. At least for the moment.

 

[Original post removed]


Say whatever you want about me, I have a pretty thick skin so most of it rolls off my back anyhow, but are you really trying to troll people with mental disorders? Seems like a step too far for what was previously nothing more than some mild criticism.

Edited by PRR 60, 16 March 2017 - 07:59 AM.
Removed quote of personal attack

We've got provisions and lots of beer. The key word is survival on the new frontier. 


#16 penguinflies

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Posted 15 March 2017 - 11:43 PM

I have had a consistent boarding experience out of the metro lounge.  Get announced to board at the lounge, then, walk by myself to the velvet rope. I stop, announce from the metro lounge with ticket in hand, then am instructed to either board or wait by the track side door, for clear to board.  Consistent when using the lounge with either a coach ticket or business/sleeper ticket any train any time of the day.

 

AM boarding for 301 and I think, other trains before 8am is from the lower boarding area, when I travel on 307, boarding for coach is from the Main Hall.  Main Hall is either Group A or Group B, IIRC.



#17 anuenue

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Posted 16 March 2017 - 08:30 AM

I'm a complete newbie, and will be traveling through Chicago twice in the spring. When I get to the station, is there in information booth or someone to let me know where I should wait, and how to get there?

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#18 Tennessee Traveler

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Posted 16 March 2017 - 11:54 AM

I'm a complete newbie, and will be traveling through Chicago twice in the spring. When I get to the station, is there in information booth or someone to let me know where I should wait, and how to get there?

 

Yes, there is an information booth in the center of the Great Hall and the general coach boarding lines are there in the Hall.  When last there there is at least an A and B line just like Southwest Airlines.

 

Part to the reason for this change and move is to avoid the very crowded open concourse area where the local commuter(METRA) trains also board.  There is really no organization for METRA boarding.  METRA trains are simply parked on various tracks and passengers are free to come and go to the trains as long as there is a train sitting and available on the track.  In other words, very confusing for "newbies" since thousands of regulars come and go without any clear directions.  


Edited by Tennessee Traveler, 16 March 2017 - 12:00 PM.


#19 williamn

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Posted 16 March 2017 - 12:03 PM

Still a mystery to me why boarding a train in the US has to be such a complicated process. Rest of the world - you display the platform/track, people get on.



#20 Bob Dylan

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Posted 16 March 2017 - 12:09 PM

As DA likes to say,the Nanny State is in full force for the Sheeple in the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave!🤔
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Yet there isn't a train I wouldn't take,No matter where its going!.." -Edna St. Vincent Millay




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