Amtrak Empire Service to NYC

13 Jun

I love travel via the train. The Husband and I traveled by train on our honeymoon and my family did all of Canada by rail. I consider myself an unofficial expert (read my tips for train travel).

Anytime we go to NY we start in NYC and take the train to western New York, but this trip we did vice versa. We started in Rochester, NY for my middle brother’s wedding. We stayed an extra week, did a ton of touristy things in Buffalo, then headed on the Amtrak Empire Service to NYC, for yet another wedding.

We boarded the train at the Rochester station, which is not nice at all. It’s dingy, the bathrooms are disgusting and seats look dirty. Luckily the staff is super nice every time, and that makes up for the station.

IMG_8897 edit

Not the nicest, but not the worst I’ve been in.

We always book business class when we take the train. It’s only $30-ish extra and includes bigger seats, quieter area, free soda, water, coffee, juice, and a newspaper. You also get on at the back of the train with the few people in business, instead of the front of the train with everyone else.

IMG_8900 edit

Wouldn’t you rather get on in the back than walk all the way to the front?

We (meaning the Husband) hauled our luggage on the train, wheeled through the snack cart, back to the business class section. Yes, another perk is that you are the closest to the snack car.

IMG_8931 edit

The snack car. Nothing fancy, but it has all the necessities, including wine, craft beer, and microwave pizza.

We headed to the back to drop our luggage off and pick our seats.

IMG_8929 edit

There is even an area to hang your garment bag.

IMG_8930 edit

The business class car. I’m standing where there is space for your luggage.

We picked the seats in the rest row, since I like to look out the back of the train.

IMG_8969

The view as we approached Penn Station.

We settled in our seats. The Husband always has plenty of leg room on the train. The seats and the area between them are very spacious.

IMG_8937 edit

A single window seat.

IMG_8905 edit

So much leg room!

I got out our snacks and prepared for the 8ish hour ride.

IMG_8906 edit

Must always have healthy snacks when traveling.

IMG_8918 edit

Cheers! Thanks Hazlitt for the mini wine bottles.

And if you don’t remember your own snacks, you can get a variety of sandwiches, snacks, or microwaved stuff.

IMG_8916 edit

It’s become customary to get microwaved pizza on our trips. And no, I did not arranged the pepperonis that way!

The bathroom is in front of the snack car. Sometimes there is a sign designating it for business class passengers only and sometimes there isn’t. This time there wasn’t but it stayed pretty clean. And it’s a pretty good sized bathroom.

IMG_8933 edit

Bathroom.

I ventured in to coach, just to take a photo quick. It was pretty loud and looked crowded, so I got out of there fast.

IMG_8938 edit

Coach class.

If you are in coach (or even business) you can sit at some tables by the snack bar, as long as you get there first. There aren’t too many.

IMG_8932 edit

Dining car.

The best part about the whole trip is the view. You spend a lot of time going along rivers, first the Mohawk then the Hudson.

IMG_8919 edit IMG_8954 edit

And at the end you go through a tunnel, and voila! You’re in Manhattan.

IMG_8970 edit

I’m home!

If you ever get the chance to take the train across NY, DO IT! It’s so relaxing and it really is a pretty ride. Seems like a long time to be on a train, but trust me, it goes by fast.

 

 

Advertisements

2 Responses to “Amtrak Empire Service to NYC”

  1. Rebecca June 11, 2015 at 11:18 am #

    Hi! I’m glad to have found your site because I’m considering going on Amtrak from Rochester almost all the way across to NYC. As far as Coach vs Business, will the coach cars be as well-kept/clean? I haven’t ridden Amtrak in 30 years, so I don’t know what it’s like! Is the atmosphere even in coach pretty courteous among riders? Just debating if I should spend the extra money for Business if I’m fine bringing my own food and don’t really need the extra leg room. Thank you in advance for replying if you see this!

    • Patti June 11, 2015 at 11:21 am #

      Hi! Thanks for reading!
      Business class is definitely worth the money. It’s usually not that much to upgrade but it’s quieter, generally no crying kids, and often times it has a separate bathroom just for business class passengers.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: