Special Items in Baggage

The following items will be accepted as carry-on and/or checked baggage in lieu of a piece of baggage. Special item fees may apply.

Required Medical Devices

Carry-On: 50 lbs. - 30" x 48"
Ground clearance of 2"

Checked: 50 lbs. - 100 linear inches

Allowance

  • Common/powered wheelchairs
  • Scooters
  • Oxygen equipment
  • Canes
  • Walkers
  • Dry ice for medication

Requirements

  • Required medical devices will not count towards a passenger's allowable baggage and will be accepted free of charge if accompanied by a ticket issued at a mobility impaired fare.
  • For oxygen equipment, the total weight of all tanks must not exceed 120 lbs.; within the limit will be allowed two 50 lb tanks, six 20 lb tanks, or any number of tanks that weigh less than 20 lbs. each up to 120 lbs.
  • Mobility assistance devices brought onboard must not exceed 600 lbs. to include the passenger.
  • Items that are not required onboard may be checked if accompanied by a ticket issued at a mobility-impaired fare. For items over 50 lbs., call 1-800-USA-RAIL to make shipping arrangements.
  • Passenger assistance at stations or on trains may require a Special Service Request - call 1-800-USA-RAIL.

Dry Ice

  • Amtrak allows dry ice in checked baggage or carry-on baggage as long as it meets the following conditions:
  • Must be clearly and visibly marked "dry ice" or "Carbon dioxide solid".
  • Must visibly display the net weight of dry ice (5 pounds or under).
  • Must not be checked onboard the train without the passenger being ticketed.
  • Must not be packed to conceal any organic or inorganic item normally prohibited on Amtrak trains.
  • Must be declared by the passenger prior to boarding.
  • Must be properly vented to allow the venting of carbon dioxide gases which could build up and cause a compromise of the container.
  • Must not be packed in a Styrofoam container.
  • If a passenger carries a dry ice container, the container must meet all of the conditions mentioned above, as well as the container must remain with the passenger or the passenger's party at all times while onboard the train.
  • The dry-ice container will count as part of the two personal allowable items that can be carried onboard the train.

A Customer Service Representative or other Amtrak agent must conduct a visual inspection of the container to confirm it is properly marked and ensure the container does not contain any cuts, cracks, stains, or leakage (venting excluded).

Bicycles and Bicycle Trailers

Carry-On/Walk-On/Walk-Up: 50 lbs.
Standard bicycle sizes apply
Maximum tire width: 2"

Checked: 50 lbs. - 70" x 41" x 8.5"

Allowance

  • Bicycles
  • Bicycle trailers
  • Folding bicycles

Requirements

  • Bicycles/bicycle trailers may be checked in a bicycle container for $10, in lieu of a piece of baggage. Bicycle boxes are sold at most staffed locations for $15 per box. Customers may supply their own bicycle container. Recumbent, tandem and special bicycles over the standard bicycle dimensions and will not fit in a standard bicycle box are prohibited.
  • Folding bicycles under the dimensions of 34" x 15" x 48" will be allowed onboard all trains in lieu of a piece of carry-on baggage. They must be considered a true folding bicycle.
  • Full-size bicycles may be carried on certain trains with designated carry-on or trainside bicycle service. Bicycles must be stowed in the designated space within the body of the car. Reservations may be made online or by calling 1-800-USA-RAIL.
  • Passengers utilizing the carry-on bicycle service, where bikes are carried on select trains by the passenger and stored in designated areas, must be able to fully handle their bicycle, and be able to lift their bicycle to shoulder height. Passengers are responsible for stowage and security of bicycles.
  • Passengers utilizing the trainside bicycle service, where bikes are transported on select trains in racks in the baggage car, must be able to lift their bicycle to shoulder height so Amtrak personnel may store and secure them in the bike racks.
  • Motorized bicycles are prohibited.
  • For more details visit Bring Your Bicycle Onboard.

Carry-On Bicycle Service

  Number of Spots Bicycle Reservation Required Checked Service Available Bicycle Fee
Amtrak Cascades 10 per train Yes Select Stations $5
Blue Water (trains 364 and 365 only) 4 per train Yes No $10
Capitol Corridor 6 per train No No --
Capitol Limited 8 per train Yes Select Stations $20
Downeaster (accepted at BRK, POR and BON stations only) 4 per train Yes No $5
Downstate Illinois Services 4 per train Yes No $10
Missouri River Runner 4 per train Yes No $10
Pacific Surfliner 6 per train Yes
Select Stations
--
Piedmont 6 per train Yes No --
San Joaquins 6 per train No Select Stations
--
Vermonter 3 per train Yes Select Stations

$10 between St. Albans and New Haven

$20 between New Haven and Washington, DC

Trainside Checked Bicycle Service

  Number of Spots Bicycle Reservation Required Checked Service Available Bicycle Fee
California Zephyr
(WIP is unstaffed but
will offer bike service)
6 per train
Yes
Select Stations
$20 or less
Cardinal
6 per train
Yes
Select Stations
$20
Carolinian 6 per train Yes Select Stations

$20 or less

City of New Orleans
6 per train
Yes
Select Stations
$20 or less
Coast Starlight
(Limited acceptance
at CTL)
6 per train
Yes
Select Stations
$20 or less
Crescent 6 per train Yes Select Stations $20
Empire Builder
(WIN and 
WGL are unstaffed 
but will offer bike service)
6 per train Yes Select Stations $20 or less
Hiawatha (accepted at CHI and MKE only) 15 per train Yes Select Stations $5
Lake Shore Limited
6 per train
Yes
Select Stations
$20
Northeast Regional
(Trains 65, 66 & 67 only)
6 per train
Yes
Select Stations
$20
Palmetto 6 per train Yes Select Stations $20
Pere Marquette (not accepted at BAM) 15 per train Yes Select Stations $10
Silver Star/Silver Meteor 6 per train Yes Select Stations $20
Southwest Chief
6 per train
Yes
Select Stations
$20 or less
Sunset Limited
(Not accepted at MRC)
3 per train
San Antonio to Los Angeles;
6 per train
New Orleans to San Antonio
Yes
Select Stations
$20 or less
Texas Eagle
(Not accepted at MRC)
6 per train
Yes
Select Stations
$20 or less

Musical Instruments

Carry-On: 50 lbs. - 28" x 22" x 14"
Medium-sized instrument sizes apply. Instruments that do not fit in luggage racks will be considered oversize.

Checked: 50 lbs. - 100 linear inches

Allowance

  • Small Musical Instruments (flutes, small trumpets and harmonicas)
  • Medium-Sized Musical Instruments (guitars, trumpets and small saxophones)
  • Oversized Musical Instruments (cellos, bass violins, bass saxophones and tubas)

Requirements

  • Smaller instruments must be packed with the passenger's luggage to be adequately protected from damage.
  • In lieu of a piece of baggage, medium-sized musical instruments may be transported for a $10.00 service fee.
  • Oversize instruments may only be carried onboard with the purchase of an additional full revenue seat - no larger than 72"/1829 mm in height.

Golfing Equipment

Carry-On: 50 lbs.
No larger than 72" in height

Checked: 50 lbs. - 100 linear inches

Allowance

  • Golf bags
  • Golf clubs
  • Balls
  • Shoes

Requirements

Carry-on Golf Bags

  • Passengers must make carry-on golf bag reservations prior to boarding the train.
  • A $10 charge per one-way trip is applied to each carry-on golf bag reservation.
  • Carry-on golf bag reservations can be made on Amtrak.com, by speaking with a reservation agent at 1-800-USA-RAIL (1-800-872-7245) or a ticket agent at an Amtrak station. If your origin station is unstaffed, you may purchase a golf club ticket onboard the train.
  • Carry-on golf bag reservations cannot be made through Quik-Trak self-serve ticketing kiosks. Please note: Passengers who have previously made a reservation that includes a golf bag charge may obtain their tickets through Quik-Trak kiosks.
  • Your eTicket will reflect your carry-on golf bag reservation if you made it on Amtrak.com or by phone. A separate ticket will be issued if you made your reservation at the station or onboard the train. Passengers must present the golf bag ticket to the conductor with their travel ticket.
  • Golf clubs must be carried in a bag or case that includes a cover that prevents the clubs from falling out. The bag, case or cover must be securely fastened by zippers or other fasteners. The passenger's name, address and phone number must be on a tag that is attached to the golf bag.

Checked Baggage Option

  • Passengers may also check golf bags at stations that offer checked baggage. A $10 handling charge applies. Golf bags are only accepted at stations that offer checked baggage or aboard trains that accept golf bags as carry-on baggage.
  • Golf carts are not accepted.
Trains Accepting Carry-on Golf Bags
(Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri and Wisconsin Services Only)

Chicago - Carbondale

Illini - Trains 392 and 393
Saluki - Trains 390 and 391

Chicago - Carbondale

Illini - Trains 392 and 393
Saluki - Trains 390 and 391

Chicago - St. Louis - Kansas City

Lincoln Service 
- Trains 300, 302, 304 and 306
- Trains 301, 303, 305 and 307

Missouri River Runner 
- Trains 311, 313, 314 and 316

Chicago - Port Huron - Pontiac
Blue Water - Trains 364 and 365

Wolverine Service

- Trains 350, 352 and 354

- Trains 351, 353 and 355

Chicago - Galesburg - Quincy

Carl Sandburg - Trains 381 and 382
Illinois Zephyr - Trains 380 and 383

Chicago - Milwaukee

Hiawatha Service

- Trains 330, 332, 334, 336, 338, 340 and 342
- Trains 329, 331, 333, 335, 337, 339 and 341

Indianapolis - Chicago

Hoosier State
- Trains 850 and 851

 

General Sporting Equipment

Carry-On: 50 lbs. - 28" x 22" x 14"

Checked: 50 lbs. - 75 linear inches
Oversize items (76 - 100 linear inches)

Allowance varies by sport. Examples include:

  • Balls
  • Bats
  • Cleats
  • Fishing Poles
  • Helmets
  • Pads
  • Rackets
  • Roller Blades
  • Skate Boards
  • Sticks (hockey/lacrosse)

Requirements

  • Equipment not specified as weapons or hazardous will be allowed onboard free of charge in lieu of a piece of baggage.
  • Equipment may also be checked in lieu of a piece of baggage. A $20.00 service fee will apply for oversized equipment 76" - 100" linear inches.

Archery Equipment

Carry-On: Not allowed

Checked: 50 lbs. - 75 linear inches

Allowance

  • Bows of any type
  • Arrows
  • Archery Supplies

Requirements

  • Archery equipment may be checked free of charge in lieu of a piece of baggage.
  • No archery equipment is allowed as carry-on items.
  • Archery equipment must be transported in a suitable hard case container.
  • If a second hard case container is used, it will count as an additional checked baggage item.

Skis and Snowboards

Carry-On: 50 lbs. (23 kg)
No larger than 72" in height

Checked: 50 lbs. - 75 linear inches
Oversize items: 76 - 100 linear inches

Allowance

  • Snow Skis
  • Water Skis
  • Snowboards
  • Poles
  • Boots

Requirements

  • Skis/snowboards may be carried onboard or checked free of charge in lieu of a piece of baggage. A $20.00 service fee will apply for oversized items 76" - 100" linear inches.
  • Skis/snowboards must be enclosed in a full-length protective cover (vinyl/cloth/nylon/or hard-sided case). Ski bags for transport are available at most staffed locations.

Surfboards and Wakeboards

Carry-On (Pacific Surfliner Only): 50 lbs. (23 kg)
No larger than 72" in height

Checked: 50 lbs. - 120" in height (72" Pacific Surfliner)

Allowance

  • Surfboards
  • Wakeboards
  • Skeg (fin)

Requirements

  • A $10 fee will apply to surfboards/wakeboards transported in checked baggage on all trains.
  • Whether checked or carried on, surfboards/wakeboards must be enclosed in a full-length protective cover (vinyl/cloth/nylon/or hard-sided case).

Surfboards/wakeboards of any length may not be carried onboard most Amtrak trains. There is a limited exception for passengers traveling on the west coast in equipment designated as Pacific Surfliner.

  • Surfboards/wakeboards may be carried onboard in lieu of a piece of baggage free of charge on Pacific Surfliner equipment only.
  • Surfboards/wakeboards must be stowed in the overhead racks.

Baby Items

Carry-On: 50 lbs. - (23 kg)
Standard baby item sizes apply

 

Checked: 50 lbs. - 100 linear inches

 

 

Allowance

  • Booster Seats
  • Car Seats
  • Folding Strollers

Requirements

  • Baby items will be allowed onboard or in checked baggage service in lieu of a piece of baggage; no service fees apply.
  • Carriages, active strollers, all terrain strollers, multi-child strollers may be required to be checked.

Firearms and Ammunitions

Carry-On: Not allowed

Checked: 50 lbs. - (23 kg) 62" x 17" x 7"

Allowance

  • Rifle
  • Shotgun
  • Handgun
  • Starter Pistol
  • BB Gun
  • Compressed Air Gun (including paintball marker)
  • Ammunition

Requirements

Amtrak accepts reservations of firearms and ammunition for carriage between Amtrak stations and on Amtrak trains within the United States that offer checked baggage service. Thruway Bus Services are not included. The following policies are in effect:

  • Notification that the passenger will be checking firearms/ammunition must be made no later than 24 hours before train departure by calling Amtrak at 800-USA-RAIL. Online reservations for firearms/ammunition are not accepted.
  • The passengers must travel on the same train that is transporting the checked firearms and/or ammunition.
  • All firearms and/or ammunition must be checked at least 30 minutes prior to scheduled train departure. Some larger stations require that baggage be checked earlier. Please contact your departure station for more details.
  • All firearms (rifles, shotguns, handguns, starter pistols) must be unloaded and in an approved, locked hard-sided container not exceeding 62" L x 17" W x 7" D (1575 mm x 432 mm x 178 mm). The passenger must have sole possession of the key or the combination for the lock to the container. The weight of the container may not exceed 50 lbs./23 kg.
  • Smaller locked, hard-sided containers containing smaller unloaded firearms such as handguns and starter pistols must be securely stored within a suitcase or other item of checked baggage, but the existence of such a firearm must be declared.
  • All ammunition carried must be securely packed in the original manufacturer's container; in fiber, wood, or metal boxes; or in other packaging specifically designed to carry small amounts of ammunition. The maximum weight of all ammunition and containers may not exceed 11 lbs./5 kg.
  • The passenger is responsible for knowing and following all federal, state, and local firearm laws at all jurisdictions to and through which he or she will be traveling.
  • All other Amtrak checked baggage policies apply, including limits on the number of pieces of checked baggage, the maximum weight of each piece (50 lbs./23 kg).
  • Firearms/ammunition may not be carried in carry-on baggage; therefore, checked baggage must be available on all trains and at all stations in the passenger's itinerary.
  • At the time of check-in, passengers will be required to complete and sign a two-part Declaration Form.
  • BB guns and Compressed Air Guns (to include paintball markers), are to be treated as firearms and must comply with the above firearms policy. Canisters, tanks, or other devices containing propellants must be emptied prior to checking and securely packaged within the contents of the passenger's luggage.