If you’ve missed your train ride aboard Amtrak’s Pere Marquette run connecting Southwest Michigan to the Chicagoland area, it makes a triumphant return next week, but you will need reservations going forward.
Amtrak tells us this morning that beginning June 29th and 30th, Amtrak and the Michigan Department of Transportation are restoring the daily Pere Marquette round-trip trains between Grand Rapids and Chicago in response to anticipated demand. The Amtrak Midwest service was temporarily suspended on March 21st due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The train will originate in Chicago on June 29th and both trains 370 & 371 will operate starting June 30th. Train 370 departs Chicago at 6:30 pm, St. Joseph/Benton Harbor at 9:14 pm, Bangor at 9:50 pm, Holland at 10:33 pm and arrives in Grand Rapids at 11:34 pm. Train 371 departs Grand Rapids daily at 6:00 am, Holland at 6:49 am, Bangor at 7:32 am, St. Joseph/Benton Harbor at 8:10 am, arriving in Chicago at 9:08 am. All times Eastern, except Chicago, which is in the Central Time Zone. Business Class and café service will also be available.
Amtrak continues to take extra steps to keep train travel safe, including limiting bookings to less than half of capacity to maintain physical distancing onboard trains. Reservations are required for Amtrak trains on this route, excluding holders of Multi-Ride Tickets. Ticketing is now available on Amtrak.com, their mobile apps or by calling 800-USA-RAIL.
Amtrak President and CEO Bill Flynn says, “We are dedicated to doing everything possible to return service safely. We want everyone to feel comfortable as they navigate this new normal.”
In addition to aggressive steps to disinfect stations and trains, additional Amtrak measures deliver a New Standard of Travel by including the following:
- Facial coverings: As part of Amtrak’s ongoing commitment to protect customers and front-line employees in response to the coronavirus pandemic, Amtrak is requiring that all customers in stations, on trains and Thruway Buses wear facial coverings. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends the use of simple cloth facial coverings or masks to slow the spread of the virus and prevent transmission.
- Cashless service: As an added measure to ensure the health and safety of customers and employees, Amtrak is temporarily accepting only cashless payments in stations and on trains.
- Physical distancing: Signage has been displayed at the busiest stations to indicate safe distances in high customer traffic areas such as waiting rooms, ticket offices, base/top of escalators, lounge entrances, etc. In addition, clear protective barriers have been installed at stations where there were no barriers.
Amtrak continues to evaluate practices and pilot new opportunities to support personal safety. Visit Amtrak.com for more information about how Amtrak is maintaining a safe environment.
With state and commuter partners, Amtrak moves people and the nation forward. They are committed to operating a safe, environmentally efficient and fiscally responsible business. Book travel, check train status, access your eTicket and more through the Amtrak app. Learn more at http://Amtrak.com