USA Rail Pass : FAQs

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Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I travel with my Amtrak Pass?

The USA Rail Pass is valid on any Amtrak service across the entire USA as well as thruway services operated by Amtrak to Vancouver and Montreal.

What is a segment?

One segment equals one City-to-City pair. Sleeping accommodations require an additional charge & prices are valid all year. Amtrak considers a travel segment any time you get on and then get off a vehicle (train, bus, ferry or other allowable leg) regardless of length

How will thruway bus services count?

The use of thruway bus services will count as a segment.

How do I validate my Amtrak Pass?

You validate your Amtrak Pass by presenting your ticket at the railway station prior to your first sector of travel.

Where can I exchange my e-ticket?

The coupon in your wallet needs to be exchanged prior to boarding. Please allow time to do this, we recommend at least 1 hour.
Rail Passes can only be picked up at any Staffed Amtrak Station.

Will you need ID to exchange your e-tickets?

If your trip involves an International border crossing, you must carry with you proof of citizenship, and proof of identity.
Amtrak requires passengers to carry a passport at all times as proof of identity.

Are seat reservations compulsory?

Yes. Seat reservations are compulsory on all Amtrak services. Passes can be open dated but you must have a seat reservation before boarding the train. Reservations can be made before departure in Australia/New Zealand with Rail Europe. If you are already in the USA, you can make a seat reservation at any train station. At the time of booking, a point-to-point ticket will be issued and you will also be allocated a seat reservation.

Are sleepers available on Amtrak trains?

Rail Europe recommends sleepers for long-distance journeys. There is a choice of Roomettes, Bedroom or Bedroom Suites that can cater from one to four people, each with varying facilities. All sleepers convert from daytime seating to beds at night, and meals are included in the price of the fare.

What dining facilities are available?

Amtrak offers a Cafe Car for short journeys, serving a selection of sandwiches, snacks, non alcoholic & alcoholic beverages that you can enjoy in the cafe carriage or take back to your seat. Long distance trains offer a Dining car with restaurant-style service and menus. Meals are reasonably priced between USD10 - 14 for a main course. Special menus are available for those with dietary requirements and children.

Is luggage assistance/storage available at USA stations?

There is a service called Red Cap available to help load luggage onto the train, however you are responsible for them once on the train.

Major railway stations sometimes offer porters to assist with luggage handling (for a small fee). Alternatively, most stations have trolleys/carts available for hire from a machine that will require local currency.

Can the USA pass be used to travel into Canada?

The USA pass can be used to travel into selected Canadian cities where the services are operated jointly by Amtrak and VIA rail. The selected cities are Montreal, Vancouver and Toronto. You cannot travel around Canada with the USA pass.