The two most obvious ways to book your Amtrak trip are: (1) Book directly with Amtrak,
either by calling Amtrak reservations or by using Amtrak's website to book online, or (2) Consult a travel agent who specializes in and is knowledgeable about train travel.
Booking directly with Amtrak
If you are booking a simple trip without train connections or stopovers, booking directly with Amtrak is probably your best choice.
Click here to book your Amtrak tickets online. Or you can call Amtrak's reservation center toll-free at 800-USA-RAIL (800-872-7245). This is advisable if you qualify for a reduced fare as a member of AAA or NARP, a veteran, active military, a student, or a senior citizen.
Consulting a Travel Agent
For a complex trip, consider consulting one of the travel agents listed below who specializes in train travel. These consultants have rare expertise and experience booking North American railroads. They ride the trains frequently and can offer you first-hand experience. They can put all the pieces together for you, provide detailed itineraries, make valuable recommendations.
These Rail Specialists, like consultants in any field, now charge service fees, and require advance credit card deposits before preparing detailed itineraries, making valuable recommendations, checking availability, and quoting Amtrak's complex and confusing fares -- but their advice can be priceless!
What is life like on board a train? What accomodations and services are offered?
How much luggage can you take?
Which hotels are close to the station?
Which car rental agencies will be open when your train arrives?
Which trains have the best scenery, and in which direction should you travel to view it during daylight hours?
Which trains habitually run late?
A travel consultant who is a Rail Specialist can answer the above, and also make arrangements for:
Rail tour packages, such as the American Orient Express, -- now called GrandLuxe Rail Journeys --, Mayflower, Tauck, Brewster Vacations, Rocky Mountaineer Vacations, etc.
Canadian railroads (VIA Rail, Rocky Mountaineer, Royal Canadian Pacific), as well as:
hotels, airline tickets, car rentals, and sightseeing.
As mentioned, the Rail Specialists listed below ride the trains frequently and can offer you firsthand experience. They can save you from:
missing the best scenery
expensive one-way air tickets
unnecessary bus connections, which Amtrak's computer sometimes recommends
Because consultants with rail expertise are rare, they have clients from all over the world and are accustomed to doing business by e-mail, fax, and toll-free telephone. They will send your tickets by overnight express or Priority Mail.
*Train Travel Consulting at Accent On Travel:
800-347-0645 or 541-885-7330 (Fax: 541-883-6457),
Web Site: TrainTravelConsulting.com,
3939 S. Sixth St. #331, Klamath Falls, Oregon 97603.
Customized US and Canadian rail trips including air travel and hotels.
Owned by Ted and Sylvia Blishak, their company name reflects their specialty of train travel.
The travel agency received a Certificate of Appreciation from Amtrak as a top producer,
and is on Conde Nast Traveler Magazine's Top Travel Specialist List.
Sylvia, who is a Canada Specialist, tickets all three of the Canadian trains.(PDF ad)