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Welcome to the Observation Car!

Welcome to the Observation Car!

There’s lots of reasons why trains are better than cars for long trips, but the observation car has to be one of the best.

What’s that? Gasp! You don’t know what an observation car is?

Let us school you …

Our observation cars are part of our double-decker trains that run long distances mainly west of Chicago.

Enjoy the Observation Car

What makes the cars so cool is that they have floor to ceiling windows, giving them their nickname “sightseer lounges.” They bring daydreaming out the window to a whole new level … literally. That’s because when you’re in one you’re actually on the second floor of the train.

Meanwhile, back upstairs there’s no assigned seating and anyone can hang out in the observation car. There’s single seats, family seats for groups up to five and even tables for card games and laptops.Below the window-filled observation car is the café car. It (conveniently!) sells snacks like hummus, pizza, chips and beer and has its own booth seating area.

Thanks to the awesome views, it’s always a favorite for first-time riders and Instagramers. Try it out next time you ride one of our long-distance trains out West. And don’t forget to tag your pics with the hashtag #Amtrak!

Marilyn L Alm
Marilyn L Alm

Never mind on the questions. NOT ONE of the long distance trains allows pets. NONE. NADA. Travel time with a pet is limited to 7 hours. And the restriction of 20 pounds or less WITH carrier is also absurd. My standard Dachshund fits easily in the carry-basket of my electric scooter or in my lap, but is solid muscle, and weighs 28 pounds. My Beagle, without carrier, weighs 20. Neither is large. So, Amtrak SAYS they take pets. In reality, they do not.  See So, I still will not be traveling on Amtrak.


They have started to accept pets now, only 5 per train which is a good thing. I would hate for Amtrak to become a kennel:

  • 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 Business class, Café Cars or other food service cars.

Let the see how these rules will be implemented. Some selfish person may just decide that their pet would be better suited on their lap.

Marilyn L Alm
Marilyn L Alm

One problem with traveling Amtrak: Amtrak does not accept pets. Therefore, I do not travel Amtrak.


@Marilyn L Alm

Rome was not built in a day. They have started somewhere and eventually they will/may get there.  

I for one would not want to sit next to someone whose dog is sitting on their lap and I am glad that Amtrak does not allow that policy and hope they never do.