Carry-on Pet Pilot Program Extended
Available on the Carl Sandburg and Illinois Zephyr May 5, 2014 - April 26, 2015; Saluki & Illini August 11, 2014 - April 26, 2015
If you're traveling on the Carl Sandburg and Illinois Zephyr, Trains 380, 381, 382 and 383 or the Illini and Saluki, Trains 390, 391, 392 and 393, you can now take your pet along. Amtrak is conducting a pilot program sponsored by the state of Illinois that will allow customers to take their small dogs or cats along with them on the train. Now that Rover can come over, we hope to see you and your pet onboard.
Please refer to the guidelines below. Other restrictions may apply. Note that these guidelines do not pertain to passengers traveling with service animals.
Types of Pets Allowed
Cats and dogs are the only types of pets accepted on Amtrak, and only one pet per passenger will be allowed.
Where Travel Must Begin
- Passengers must begin the first leg of their trip at the Chicago, Naperville, Galesburg, Homewood, Champaign-Urbana or Carbondale stations during the hours that the ticket offices are open.
Note: Due to the ticket office hours, the only train accepting pet reservations at Naperville is Train 383, and at Homewood the only trains accepting pet reservations are Trains 393 and 392.
- Round trips may be booked to an unstaffed station, but travel must begin at staffed stations, as described in the "Pet Reservations, Fare and Ticketing" section below.
Pet Reservations, Fare and Ticketing
- Effective August 4, pet reservations will be accepted on the Trains 380, 381, 382, 383, 390, 391, 392 and 393, through April 26, 2015. Travel with pets on Trains 390, 390, 391, 392 and 393 begins August 11.
- Pet reservations are made on a first-come, first-served basis. No more than four pets are reserved per train. Service animals do not count towards this limitation.
- The fare for pets is $25.00 per carrier, for each travel segment.
- Pet reservations can only be made with a reservation agent at 1-800-USA-RAIL or at a staffed station.
- Passengers may only pick up pet tickets at the Chicago, Naperville, Galesburg, Homewood, Champaign-Urbana or Carbondale stations. Pet tickets cannot be picked up at any other stations.
- Pets are not permitted to travel with unaccompanied minors.
- During this pilot program, multi-ride tickets cannot be used in conjunction with pet reservations. Multi-ride ticket holders traveling with a pet must reserve a coach seat and pay the applicable fare.
Arrive at Least 30 Minutes Early
Passengers traveling with pets must check in at the station ticket office no later than 30 minutes before train departure time in order to allow sufficient time to confirm pet eligibility and complete a Release and Indemnification Agreement.
Designated Pet Car & Onboard Guidelines
- Passengers must remain with pets at all times.
- Pets must remain inside their carrier at all times and may not be removed from their carrier while in stations or onboard trains.
- Passengers must keep their pet carrier under their own seat. Pet carriers are not permitted under the seat in front of you.
- Pet carriers are not permitted on train seats.
- Pets are not permitted in food service cars.
- Each Carl Sandburg, Illinois Zephyr, Saluki and Illini train will have one railcar designated for passengers with their pets.
Approved Pet Carriers
- Pet owners must provide their own pet carrier.
- The maximum size for pet carriers is 19" long x 14" wide x 10.5" high.
- Carrier may be hard or soft sided but must be leak proof and well ventilated.
- For safety reasons, pet must be able to sit and lie down comfortably without touching the sides of the carrier.
- A carrier counts as one piece of carry-on baggage.
Pet Age and Health
- Pet must be at least eight weeks old.
- Pets must be odorless and harmless, not disruptive, and require no attention during travel. Amtrak maintains the right to refuse acceptance of or remove from the train any pet exhibiting these issues.
- Passengers will be required to certify that pet is up to date on all vaccinations and accepts liability for animal.
- Maximum weight of pet with carrier is 20 pounds.
- Amtrak will not accept liability for the health and well-being of pets.
- Note: In the event of an incident, Amtrak will make reasonable efforts to assist passengers with the evacuation of their pets and will seek (but cannot guarantee) pet friendly accommodations, if alternate transportation or sheltering is necessary.