Todd DeFeo

Amtrak gearing up for busy Thanksgiving

Amtrak says it will operate every available passenger car in its fleet this Thanksgiving in a move designed to help accommodate the anticipated influx of travelers during the holiday.

The railroad’s busiest days — and the ones most likely to sell out — are typically the Tuesday and Wednesday before Thanksgiving and the Saturday and Sunday following the holiday. The railroad suggests passengers book their Thanksgiving holiday train tickets sooner rather
than later to avoid missing out on the best availability and pricing.

Last year, Amtrak set a Thanksgiving record a year ago when it carried 772,211 passengers, up from 754,000 in 2013 and 737,537 in 2012. The railroad is expecting a similar number of passengers to travel by train this holiday as did a year ago.

In anticipation, Amtrak said it is increasing capacity on a number of its routes nationwide, including the Pacific Surfliner, Capitol Corridor, Amtrak Cascades, San Joaquin and Keystone Service. In addition, Amtrak is partnering with area commuter lines to operate Holiday Extra trains between New York and Washington on Sunday, Nov. 29.

For a smooth travel experience, Amtrak suggests passengers arrive early, carry a photo identification and confirm train schedules before arriving at the station; railroad officials also urge passengers to use is app to stay connected. And, much like security protocol at
airports, Amtrak is warning passengers not to leave bags unattended at its stations and to stand clear of platform edges.

AAA has not yet released its Thanksgiving travel prediction, but 46.3 million people were projected to travel at least 50 miles from home last year. That was slated to be the highest Thanksgiving travel period since 2007, and of those, nearly 1.5 million were expected to travel by rail or other modes of transportation.

About Todd DeFeo
Todd DeFeo loves to travel anywhere, anytime, taking pictures and notes. An award-winning reporter, Todd revels in the experience and the fact that every place has a story to tell. He is owner of The DeFeo Groupe and also edits Express Telegraph and Railfanning.org.