Amtrak's long distance (overnight) trains are modern trains with lounge cars, dining cars, coaches, and sleeping cars. All long distance trains in the western U.S. are bilevel Superliner trains. Most long distance trains east of Chicago are single-level trains, with Viewliner sleeping cars.
Modern bilevel Superliner trains provide an excellent way to travel and see the country in comfort! All western long distance trains have coaches, dining car, Sightseer lounge car, and sleeping cars: The Chicago-Seattle Empire Builder (with a Portland section), the Chicago-Emeryville/San Francisco California Zephyr, the Chicago-Los Angeles Southwest Chief, the Chicago-San Antonio Texas Eagle (thrice-weekly to Los Angeles), and the Seattle-Los Angeles Coast Starlight. Superliners are also used for the Chicago-Washington DC Capitol Limited, the Chicago-New Orleans City of New Orleans, and the thrice-weekly New Orleans-Los Angeles Sunset Limited. Top
Superliner sleeping cars feature deluxe Bedrooms, Roomettes, Accessible Bedrooms, and Family bedrooms.
Bedrooms, designed for one or two adults, have a long sofa, plus an upholstered armchair. At night upper and lower berths provide comfortable beds. Bedrooms feature a wash basin and vanity, and they have a private lavatory with shower. The overall room size is 6'6" by 7'6". The upper bed measures 6'2" by 2'4", and the lower is 6'6" by 3'4". Certain adjacent Bedrooms can be combined into a large Deluxe Suite.
Roomettes (formerly termed Standard Bedrooms) are the least expensive. Though smaller than Bedrooms, a Roomette is a comfortable accommodation for one or two people. For daytime use there are two upholstered chairs facing each other by the window, and there is a small pull-out table that can be used for games, as a work table, or for snacks. There's a small closet, with hangers. For sleeping there are upper and lower berths. Each sleeping car has four lavatories (one upstairs and the rest downstairs) for the use of Roomette occupants. There is also a shower, with a dressing room, on the lower level. The overall Roomette size is 6'6" by 3'6". The upper bed measures 6'2" by 2', and the lower bed is 6'6" by 2'4". Top
Family Bedrooms are designed for two adults and two small children. The room spans the width of the car, on the lower level, with windows providing views out both sides of the train. Seating consists of a 9' sofa, and a separate upholstered chair by one window. A small pull-out table can be used for snacks, games, or writing. There's a small closet, with hangers. For sleeping the room converts to two adult and two child berths. Room dimenions are 5'2" by 9'5". The upper adult bed measures 6'2" by 2'4" and the lower measures 6'3" by 3'4". The upper child bed measures 2' by 4'7" and the lower is 2'3" by 4'9". The Family Bedroom is located just down the corridor from the shower and lavatories, and it is near the large luggage storage shelves.
Accessible Bedrooms, designed to accommodate a disabled passenger and a companion, are similar in size to the Family room and. like the Family room, span the width of the car. There are two comfortable chairs, like those in a Roomette, by the window on one side of the room. A small pull-out table can be used for snacks, games, or writing. For sleeping the room makes up with upper and a lower beds like those in a Standard Bedroom. The other side of the room has a sink, vanity and toilet which are accessible by wheelchair. Room service is available by the car attendant.
Each bedroom has individual climate control. Each room also has an electrical outlet which can be used for such appliances as electric shavers and laptop computers. Blankets, linens, pillows, towels, washcloths, and soap are provided. There are provisions for hanging clothes on hangers. Rooms have limited luggage storage space, and there are large luggage shelves on the lower level of each Superliner sleeping car. Top
While bedroom accommodations provide private facilities for sleeping, working, reading, or visiting, sleeping car passengers can also take advantage of the Sightseer Lounge car on most Superliner trains. WIth it's large ankle-to-ceiling picture windows, this is an excellent place to enjoy the scenery, as well as visit with fellow passengers. The lounge car has a snack bar on the lower level, featuring sandwiches, beverages, some hot food items. and souvenirs.
In addition to the Sughtseer lounge car, one train - the Coast Starlight - has a first class lounge exclusively for sleeping car pasengers. This lounge, the Pacific Parlour Car, offers extra comfort and amenities.
Accommodation charges for sleepers include meals in the diner, as well as wake up service (if requested), morning tea or coffee and juice. Top
Most long distance trains east of Chicago are single-level trains with Viewliner sleeping cars. These include the Chicago-New York Lake Shore Limited (with a Boston section), the thrice-weekly Chicago-Washington DC Cardinal, and the New York-Florida Silver Star & Silver Meteor. With the exception of the (i>Silver Star>, these single-level trains have dining and lounge cars, and meals are included in the sleeper accommodation charges. The Silver Star, which has somewhat lower sleeper accommodation charges, provides food service in the lounge car for all passengers.
An attractive feature of the Viewliners is a second, upper row of windows - providing a sense of spaciousness and, perhaps more importantly, providing a window for upper-berth occupants. Viewliners offer Bedrooms, Roomettes, and Accessible Bedrooms (but no Family rooms). Top
As on the Superliners, the largest rooms are the Bedrooms accommodating one or two people. The beds are the same size, and the overall room dimensions are nearly the same, as those in a Superliner Bedroom (see above). For daytime use there is a long sofa and an armchair. Deluxe Bedrooms include a private, enclosed shower, along with toilet and sink. Two adjacent Deluxe Bedrooms can be converted to a Deluxe Suite.
Roomettes are smaller but comfortable rooms for one or two people. For daytime use there are two upholstered chairs by the window, with a pull-out table for games, snacks, or writing. For sleeping the room converts to comfortable upper and lower beds. Both are 2'4" wide; the upper is 6'2" long and the lower is 6'6" long. There is a shower, with dressing room, in each Viewliner sleeping car for Roomette occupants.
Accessible Bedrooms have ample room for a wheelchair. The seats and beds are similar to those in a Standard Bedroom. In addition, there is an enclosed shower, sink and toilet which is accessible by wheelchair. Room service is provided, if requested.
All Viewliner bedrooms include individual climate controls and electrical outlets. Except for the Silver Star, meals are included in the price of sleeping accommodations, as are wake up service (if requested), and morning tea or coffee and juice. Top
An Amtrak ticket price consists of railfare and accommodation charges (if any). The railfare is the basic transportation; by itself it is good for travel in coach. The accommodation charge is the additional amount for sleeper accommodations. Railfares for coach passengers are subject to availablility, but first class passengers always pay the lowest applicable railfare (regardless of what's actually available in coach).
Bedroom accommodation charges vary by season, demand, train, and points traveled. It is therefore necessary to check actual availability on a specific train and date in order to give an accurate price quote (and that could change at any time unless the space is reserved). Bedrooms are more likely to be available at lower acommodation charges if reservations are being made well in advance. So book early. It also helps if one has some flexibility in travel dates; we can then search dates to see which has rooms available at the lowest price. If you are contemplating a trip and want to get an idea of what it will cost, go to my Information & Reservations page and use the e-mail link there to send me an inquiry with all of the pertinent details. I will be happy to help.
Coach travelers have comfortable, roomy seats that recline and are equipped with foot and legrests. There are overhead luggage racks, and large luggage storage shelves on the lower level of all Superliner coaches. There are also lavatories in every coach. Passengers need not stay confined to their seats, but can take advantage of the dining and lounge cars. For more information and tips, see Amtrak Travel Tips. Top