November 20, 2014 Amtrak Adds Capacity to California Trains for Thanksgiving

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Helpful travel tips for passengers; Pacific Surfliner requires reservations

OAKLAND – The Thanksgiving travel season will soon be underway and Amtrak, Caltrans and the Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority (CCJPA) are adding equipment to accommodate extra passengers traveling throughout California. America’s Railroad® is working to meet holiday travel needs and offers several helpful travel tips for new or experienced passengers.

More seats will be added to the Amtrak San Joaquin, Pacific Surfliner and Capitol Corridor routes. The Pacific Surfliner trains will add 7,300 seats and require reservations beginning Tuesday, Nov. 25, through Monday, Dec. 1. More than 700 seats will be added to the Capitol Corridor service beginning Tuesday, Nov. 25, through Sunday, Nov. 30. The San Joaquin service will add 600 seats beginning Wednesday, Nov. 26, through Sunday, Nov. 30.

Amtrak will also be increasing the number of reserved Thruway buses on its busiest California routes, including Sacramento-Stockton, Bakersfield-Los Angeles, and Santa Barbara-San Luis Obispo-San Jose.

Passengers can anticipate exceptionally heavy travel the Wednesday before and the Sunday after Thanksgiving so reservations for these days should be made as soon as possible.

Passengers will find these additional travel tips helpful during this busy time:

  • Avoid the Rush: The busiest travel days are the Tuesday and Wednesday before Thanksgiving and the Sunday after the holiday. Other than Thanksgiving Day, morning trains typically have more availability than those in the afternoon and evening
  • Purchasing Tickets: eTicketing is enabled on every train route throughout the nation. Travelers may purchase tickets early using, Quik-Trak or ticket windows at staffed stations (where available), or the Amtrak iPhone app, Android app or Windows app. Pacific Surfliner and San Joaquin passengers may also call 800-USA-RAIL. Capitol Corridor passengers may call 1-877-9RIDE-CC for information; however tickets are not available via phone
  • Arrive at the Station Early: Allow plenty of time at stations prior to departure – at least 45 minutes before if tickets need to be picked up. Arrange for pre-boarding if you need extra time or assistance and use Amtrak Red Cap agents to help you with your baggage.
  • Carry photo ID: Passengers are required to show valid photo identification when purchasing tickets. Make sure to carry valid photo ID at all times, as it may be requested aboard trains.
  • Be Safe: Be aware of your surroundings, stand back from the edge of the platform, do not leave your bags unattended, and watch your step when boarding and leaving the train or when walking between cars while the train is in motion.
  • Listen Carefully for Boarding Announcements: Be sure that the train you are boarding will stop at your destination. Extra trains added for the Thanksgiving holiday may not go to all stations. If you are in doubt, check with the conductor before you step onto the train.
  • Security Matters: If you see something suspicious or unusual, say something and call Amtrak Police at (800) 331-0008. Passengers may also report suspected criminal or suspicious activity by sending a text to APD11 from a smartphone or to 27311 from a standard cell phone. Amtrak will have a heightened security presence in our stations and on board trains.

Visit for more Thanksgiving holiday travel trips.

About Amtrak®

Amtrak is America’s Railroad®, the nation’s intercity passenger rail service and its high-speed rail operator. Amtrak and its state and commuter partners move people, the economy and the nation forward. Formally known as the National Railroad Passenger Corporation, Amtrak is governed by a nine member board of directors appointed by the President of the United States and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Anthony R. Coscia is board chairman and Jeffrey R. Moreland is vice chairman. In FY 2014, nearly 31 million passengers traveled on Amtrak on more than 300 daily trains – at speeds up to 150 mph (241 kph) – that connect 46 states, the District of Columbia and three Canadian Provinces. Enjoy the journey® at or call 800-USA-RAIL for schedules, fares and more information. Like us on Facebook, Follow us on Twitter (@Amtrak) and check out our blog at

About Amtrak California

Under the Amtrak California banner, Caltrans funds three of the five busiest intercity passenger rail routes in the Amtrak system: the Pacific Surfliner corridor (ranked second), the Capitol Corridor (ranked third), and the San Joaquin corridor (ranked fifth). Caltrans manages both the Pacific Surfliner and San Joaquin corridors. The Capitol Corridor is managed by the Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority. Stay connected. Visit us at; join us on Facebook at; or follow us on Twitter at

About Capitol Corridor®

The Capitol Corridor serves seventeen stations along the 170-mile rail corridor connecting Placer, Sacramento, Yolo, Solano, Contra Costa, Alameda, San Francisco and Santa Clara counties, paralleling both the I-80/I-680 and I-880 corridors in segments from Sacramento to San Jose. The CCJPA partners with Amtrak, Union Pacific Railroad, Caltrans and the communities comprising the CCJPA to offer cost-effective intercity passenger rail and offers a convenient way to travel between the Sierra Foothills, Sacramento, the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley/San Jose. For details about the Capitol Corridor, visit or call 1-877-974-3322. Join us on Facebook at and follow us on Twitter at