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Guest Michiko

First class lounge access

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Guest Michiko

I'm going from Albuquerque to Chicago (SW Chief) in a roomette, then Chicago to Washington DC (Cap Ltd) in a roomette. From DC I'm going to Alexandria, so for that 20-minute portion I'll be going coach on the Silver Star. Can't use an upgrade coupon for the Silver Star and it's a blackout day anyway.

 

A few years ago that sleeper portion of the trip would have let me into the first class lounge at DC even though I was going to proceed in coach class. But I thought I read here that in Chicago they changed that, they would only give access to the lounge if you were going first or sleeper class from the lounge that day.

 

Is that how it is in all the first class lounges now or will they allow me to sit in the one in DC for a few hours?

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As far as I know, you have lounge access

from the website:

Amtrak passengers with a same-day ticket (departing) or ticket receipt (arriving) in First Class or sleeping car accommodations.

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That's correct. Lounge access won't be a problem.

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Guest Michiko

Thanks! That makes it a lot easier for me.

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Chicago Metropolitan Lounge and Washington ClubAcela Lounge.

If you're going to needlessly correct someone, you can at least get it right.

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Maybe you have a reason for doing it the way you're doing it, but I want to make sure you know that you don't have to wait around for the Silver Star to get from Washington to Alexandria: Both stations are served by the Metro (they're called "Union Station" and "King Street - Old Town" on the WMATA map).

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Maybe you have a reason for doing it the way you're doing it, but I want to make sure you know that you don't have to wait around for the Silver Star to get from Washington to Alexandria: Both stations are served by the Metro (they're called "Union Station" and "King Street - Old Town" on the [url="https://www.wmata.com/schedules/maps/upload/2017-System-Map.pdf]WMATA map

).

This.

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Guest Michiko

Maybe you have a reason for doing it the way you're doing it, but I want to make sure you know that you don't have to wait around for the Silver Star to get from Washington to Alexandria: Both stations are served by the Metro (they're called "Union Station" and "King Street - Old Town" on the WMATA map)

Thank you, but yes, there is a reason, the Alexandria Amtrak station is where my ride to Arlington/Falls Church wants to pick me up. And I have other issues about carrying all my carry-on stuff on the metro, although I 'd probably try it if my ride didn't want me at the Amtrak metro station.

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The Amtrak Station and Metro Station in Alexandria are parallel about a block from each other, EZ walk under the bridge!

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Guest Michiko

Bob, I'm sorry I'm not making this too clear. My ride will not get off work until midafternoon. So I can cancel the ticket I already got 2 months ago, get off the Cap Ltd, take all my carryon stuff onto the Metro, drag it under the bridge and wait 2 hours there. Or I can simply keep my ticket as is, spend the 2 hours in the lounge at Washington Union Station (ahem, apologies, the ClubAcela​), and then get on the Silver Star and be met by my ride at the Amtrak station, without having to drag all my carryon stuff under the bridge.

 

Not to mention last time I visited that area this article was published in the Post:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/apps/g/page/local/timeline-violence-on-metro/2014/

 

Being a middle-aged woman with a few physical problems traveling alone is always going to make me prefer the comfort and safety of Amtrak. When I'm *not* alone it's different!

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Thanks Michiko, makes sense now!😉

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Guest Michiko

One more question - would they let me check my luggage for the 20-minute trip from DC to Alexandria? Or maybe there's a luggage space in coach like there is on the sleepers?

 

OT - I think I'm going to stick to this forum, reading the Amtrak Rail Discussion forum is getting kind of depressing.

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One more question - would they let me check my luggage for the 20-minute trip from DC to Alexandria? Or maybe there's a luggage space in coach like there is on the sleepers?

 

OT - I think I'm going to stick to this forum, reading the Amtrak Rail Discussion forum is getting kind of depressing.

They should let you do it - I don't think there's any policy that says anything about checked baggage not being allowed for short trips. And if you're talking about just checking it all the way from Albuquerque (or Chicago) to Alexandria, there certainly shouldn't be any issue whatsoever.

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One more question - would they let me check my luggage for the 20-minute trip from DC to Alexandria? Or maybe there's a luggage space in coach like there is on the sleepers?

 

Sure. I've heard of people checking in baggage for 9 minute trips. Apparently the only real requirement is that there's baggage service at both ends. However, baggage may end up going on a different train, especially if the train you're taking has no baggage service.

 

Every Amtrak train I've been on has been able to accommodate a typical piece of baggage that would be considered check-in by airlines. Even the corridor routes without checked-in baggage service.

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Guest Michiko

Thanks! That eases my mind about how to handle that stuff.

 

I've never traveled coach with luggage before and wouldn't want to try to cram all of it into my seat area. If there's a space for it, that's great, checking it is even easier. I won't need it for the 20-minute trip! But the overnight trains, there's room in my roomette for one of them, and the one with the changes of clothes can go in that luggage space on the lower level.

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Quick question, when is you're trip? With the future of the Chief in question, I wouldn't want to be booked in it too far in advance...

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Guest Michiko

September. I could take an alternate way if I had to. I hope I don't have to though.You don't think they'd take the axe to it that quickly do you?

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September. I could take an alternate way if I had to. I hope I don't have to though.You don't think they'd take the axe to it that quickly do you?

If they accept the proposal to chop up the Chief and declare it a "suspension", which would bypass the 180 day rule, then it is possible that it would happen by the time you're traveling. I would say that the risk is not significant enough that you should consider changing your trip or anything like that, but it is a possibility that I would be mindful of.

Edited by cpotisch

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Thanks! That eases my mind about how to handle that stuff.

 

I've never traveled coach with luggage before and wouldn't want to try to cram all of it into my seat area. If there's a space for it, that's great, checking it is even easier. I won't need it for the 20-minute trip! But the overnight trains, there's room in my roomette for one of them, and the one with the changes of clothes can go in that luggage space on the lower level.

 

There are ample luggage racks on Amfleet II coach cars that are used on the Silver Star. I can't think of any coach car on Amtrak that doesn't have some sort of overhead storage space, so you're not going to need to place anything at your feet. However, there are some California Cars that have airline style bins that close rather than open racks, but I don't think you'll be encountering them.

 

As long as you can lift your stuff into the racks you should be fine. Here's a picture (supposed to be Amfleet II):

 

abr25005ia.jpg

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Guest Michiko

Many thanks. BCL - I am unable to lift even my small luggage up there. I have never been in a situation, either on Greyhound or Amtrak, that someone wasn't willing to help me with this, but I don't count chickens before they hatch - it's just easier to check it. Thanks, I know this will help those who are able to lift...

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Many thanks. BCL - I am unable to lift even my small luggage up there. I have never been in a situation, either on Greyhound or Amtrak, that someone wasn't willing to help me with this, but I don't count chickens before they hatch - it's just easier to check it. Thanks, I know this will help those who are able to lift...

Sure. I know of a college athlete whose shoulders were so messed up he couldnt extend his arms fully up.

But there should be a floor level luggage area, and at least on Superliner equipment Ive seen luggage placed at the ends where theres dead space between the first seat and the bulkhead.

amtrak-diagram-amfleet2-coach.jpg

I got it from here:

http://www.craigmashburn.com/amtrakcardiagrams.html"]http://www.craigmashburn.com/amtrakcardiagrams.html Edited by BCL

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Guest Guest

Many thanks. BCL - I am unable to lift even my small luggage up there. I have never been in a situation, either on Greyhound or Amtrak, that someone wasn't willing to help me with this, but I don't count chickens before they hatch - it's just easier to check it. Thanks, I know this will help those who are able to lift...

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Many thanks. BCL - I am unable to lift even my small luggage up there. I have never been in a situation, either on Greyhound or Amtrak, that someone wasn't willing to help me with this, but I don't count chickens before they hatch - it's just easier to check it. Thanks, I know this will help those who are able to lift...

 

I meant that there are floor-level baggage racks. I don't know about storing kids on the rack, but you can see that there's a lower-level to the storage area. I'm not sure if this is Amfleet II, but I believe there's at least something similar.

 

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Many thanks. BCL - I am unable to lift even my small luggage up there. I have never been in a situation, either on Greyhound or Amtrak, that someone wasn't willing to help me with this, but I don't count chickens before they hatch - it's just easier to check it. Thanks, I know this will help those who are able to lift...

 

I meant that there are floor-level baggage racks. I don't know about storing kids on the rack, but you can see that there's a lower-level to the storage area. I'm not sure if this is Amfleet II, but I believe there's at least something similar.

 

 

Amfleets, single level cars, do not have those types of luggage storage. There's a small space for some luggage at one end of each car. Of course, some people store their bags in the handicap area which, of course, is a no-no if there should be someone in a wheelchair that needs that space.

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