Took the train from Chicago to New York to enjoy the scenery.Inevitably, there was a long delay... read more
I can't answer regarding Penn Station in NYC and the Redcaps or Taxis, however on the Texas Eagle if you've checked your bags to your final destination (NYC) then they will automatically be transferred in Chicago to the... More
I can't answer regarding Penn Station in NYC and the Redcaps or Taxis, however on the Texas Eagle if you've checked your bags to your final destination (NYC) then they will automatically be transferred in Chicago to the proper train (the Lake Shore). Now if you had scheduled an overnight layover in Chicago you would need to claim them, but since you're arriving and leaving the same day, you are good to go. Just make sure that when you check them in at Fort Worth that they put the NYC destination on the tag. I've been on the Southwest Chief, the Zephyr and the Empire Builder and have always checked my bags in at Toledo Ohio and then back from the west coast back all the way to Toledo, and they have always made it through Chicago without my handling them at all. The Lake Shore and the Capital Limited are the two trains that gets me between Chicago and Toledo and my luggage has always made it to and from Toledo without any problems what-so-ever to and from the west coast via the automatic transfers in Chicago. Unlike the airlines, I've never had Amtrak actually loose my bags, although one time they did arrive in Portland soaking wet on the insides. It only happened once but I learned that anything that must not get wet, it would be a good idea to first wrap in a plastic bag before putting in the suitcase (just in case). Also be aware that many stations are weighing the bags these days and enforcing the weight limits and some actually measure the bags to make sure you are also within the size limitations. This happens mostly with the checked bags, but I did have Amtrak measure the bags in Chicago once before letting people carry them on. To avoid any difficulties when trying to depart, I suggest weighing them and keeping them within the size limits as you never know when you're going to get someone that really enforces the rules and lets nothing extra slip through. Never been on Amtrak in Fort Worth, but in Chicago the RedCaps and their carts seem plentiful however you may have to wait your turn for them if you want assistance with your carry-on bags or a ride to and from the train car you are assigned. The elderly, handicapped and people with small children, and especially those in the First Class Sleeper cars normally get first service. In major cities I have never seen a lack of taxis waiting. Even in Toledo when the train arrives in the middle of the night, I've never not seen a taxi or two waiting for potential fares.