All aboard for social distancing: Amtrak offers 2-for-1 roomette sale

The Coast Starlight lounge car
The Coast Starlight lounge car features floor-to-ceiling windows and comfortable chairs.
(Crystal Paul / Seattle Times)

Amtrak has launched a 2-for-1 sale on roomettes that could be ideal for those concerned about social distancing because of the coronavirus pandemic. Roomettes, with two seats that reconfigure into upper and lower sleeping berths, provide private spaces to stay for the length of the journey.

You must book by July 17 for travel through Sept. 30. Bear in mind, Los Angeles County and California currently discourage residents from taking leisure trips because of the recent spike in coronavirus cases.

The savings on this deal are good for short or long rides through some of the most picturesque routes across the country. Here are sample roomette fares for long journeys starting in the West. Prices below are one way for two passengers.

The train faces an uncertain future, but for now sit back and enjoy the scenery, the rich history and the camaraderie found on a rail trip.

  • $432 (almost 34 hours) from L.A. to Seattle aboard the Coast Starlight, which takes you from Pacific Ocean views in Santa Barbara to the Cascade Mountains in the Northwest.
  • $623 (almost 52 hours) from Emeryville, Calif., in the Bay Area to Chicago aboard the California Zephyr, which travels through the Sierra and the Rockies and on to the plains of Nebraska.
  • $623 (23 hours) from Los Angeles to Chicago on the Southwest Chief, which chugs through the desert and red-rock country of Arizona and New Mexico.

Roomettes come with towels, bedding and meals (you can choose to have room service if you don’t want to use the dining car). Restroom and showers are shared with passengers in the same rail car. Also, passengers can sit in the big-window observation lounge (where passengers social distance) and lounges at main train stations.

Check out the steps Amtrak takes to disinfect and clean trains and stations, and what rules passengers need to follow onboard to prevent spread of the coronavirus.

To book, go to or use the code V306 if you’re using the app.