Train Travel

Ten Tips for First-Time Train Travellers

Ten Tips for First-Time Train Travellers

Amtrak Vacations regularly asks our customers about their First-Time Train Travellers experiences and offers any tips they might have for first-time passengers who might not be familiar with the details of the train. These 10 tips will ensure that you have a pleasant and relaxing first rail trip.


To ensure a smooth journey, you should arrive at the station no less than 30 minutes before your train departs. This will allow you time to find your platform and prepare any bags to be checked. You can check your route and see the time between the connecting trains. Also, the current meal schedule.


Amtrak offers generous luggage policies that allow two carry-on bags of up to 50 pounds each passenger. Two small personal items, such as a blanket, purse, or laptop can also be carried by the passenger. These items can be stored in overhead bins. An Amtrak agent will help you label and check your bags at the station so you are able to identify your bag when you get on or off the train.

Be comfortable

Comfortable travel is more enjoyable. Comfortable shoes and clothing that is breathable are essential to enjoy your train ride. Expert riders suggest bringing small comforts, such as a blanket, throw or pillow.


You’ll be surprised at the sights and people you meet as you explore the train. You can take a look at the changing scenery from the observation car, or you can grab a snack and a drink in the snack car. You can enjoy chef-prepared meals onboard the train and the company of other passengers.


Amtrak coach seats can be rearranged to make them more comfortable than standard airplane seats. Many riders recommend that they upgrade to a room with a mattress in the sleeper car of the train for a better night’s sleep after a night.


The moment you step on the train, memories begin. Some of the most beautiful views are right in front of your eyes. To capture the best of it all, you’ll need to have your camera within arm’s reach.

BRING Snacks

Amtrak allows riders on trains to bring food and drink for consumption in their seats or in the sleeping cars. Riders are encouraged to bring along some of their favorite snacks and beverages.


Many passengers enjoy the opportunity to unplug, read, play games or simply relax while the train moves by. Each coach seat on Amtrak has its own outlet in case of major withdrawals. It’s also a convenient way for you to charge your devices before arriving at your destination.


You’ll need a backup in case your plan to unplug goes wrong. Preload your phone or tablet with some movies, apps, or podcasts to make sure you have one. This is especially useful if you are traveling with children, as it can get dark when the sun sets. Make sure you have headphones with you to ensure that everyone around has a great experience.


You can now relax, enjoy and take in the train ride. It’s half the fun getting there!

Additional Resource: