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Chicago to Champaign train

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Chicago - Champaign Train Timetable

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Trip Summary

4 trains operate daily from Chicago to Champaign. The train trip from Chicago to Champaign is usually about 3 hours and 16 minutes long. However, traveling on the fastest Amtrak City of New Orleans train can get you there in as little as 2 hours and 24 minutes.

Distance126 mi (203 km)
Fastest train2h 24m
Lowest price£8.66
Trains per day3
Most frequent serviceAmtrak
Train lines4

Train Trip Reviews from Wanderu Customers

Overall score for trains from Chicago to Champaign

(Based on 56 ratings and reviews)

4.8

5.0

Holly

12 April 2024- Business

Amtrak Illini Service

Pros: Trains on time, very comfortable. Cons: Indicate if need to go upstairs or seating area on ticket, provide wifi. Tips: Great access to power outlets.

5.0

Festina

16 March 2024- Visiting family

Amtrak Saluki

Pros: Very relaxing and stress free. Cons: Nothing. Tips: None.

5.0

Dennise

24 December 2023- Visiting family

Amtrak Saluki

Pros: No deal with traffic. Cons: Just nice trip.

5.0

Iskra

7 September 2023- Business

Amtrak Illini Service

Pros: The train seats were very clean and comfortable. There was not a lot of noise on the train, which was nice because I had work to do on my computer. No wifi was present either, I would've appreciated some wifi on the train. Cons: The wifi available would be great. I had a lot of work to do since I'm a college student, and didn't want to get behind. It was difficult to do all of that with little to no wifi. Tips: Bring you own cable wifi because there's no internet on the train.

5.0

Ranjit

25 August 2023- Vacation

Amtrak City of New Orleans

It was a memorable experience traveling by Amtrak

Chicago to Champaign Route Map

Chicago Champaign

What is the price of a train ticket from Chicago to Champaign?

In the last 30 days, the average cost of a train ticket from Chicago to Champaign was £21.80. This is a fantastic deal for train travel. You have the best chances of scoring the cheapest ticket to Champaign if you book your train tickets at least 29 days in advance. Waiting to purchase until the day of your trip could end up costing you an extra £7.63.

Average prices by travel date

£35£24£12JunJul

Over the next 30 days, the average cost of a one-way train trip from Chicago to Champaign will vary between £18 and £32. Planning a train trip to Champaign within the upcoming week? The cheapest train ticket you can find from Chicago over the next 7 days is £19. Make sure to book your trip as soon as possible as train fares tend to go up as you get closer to your travel date.

Monthly average prices

£39£32£24£16£8JASONDJFMAMJ
You can find the lowest prices on this route during May. This time of year offers the best deals on train tickets from Chicago to Champaign, with the average price at just £20. Train tickets on this route are most expensive in October, when the average price goes up to £32. You can still score cheap deals below this average price, though, especially if you plan ahead and book your ticket in advance.

Prices as travel date approaches

£39£32£24£16£83020100

If you want to score the best deal, you should plan to book your train trip online on Wanderu at least 29 days ahead of time. If you do that, your train ticket to Champaign from Chicago will be about £7.63 cheaper compared to what you would pay if you book at the last minute.

Which train should you take from Chicago to Champaign?

There are 4 train lines with service from Chicago to Champaign. There is only one daily train on each service.

TrainDaily TripsAvg. TimeAvg. Price
Amtrak15h 50m£36.94
Amtrak City of New Orleans12h 24m£29.41
Amtrak Illini Service12h 31m£18.19
Amtrak Saluki12h 32m£15.43
  • Amtrak is the largest passenger railroad service in America, offering daily intercity trains to hundreds of destinations across the contiguous United States, as well as several cities in Canada. Every Amtrak train comes equipped with comfortable seats with extra legroom, as well as several four-seat areas with tables in the middle. In addition, each car has a freshly cleaned restroom, free WiFi and power outlets at every seat. There are also snack bars where you can purchase drinks or food during your journey. On average, there are 1 Amtrak trains from Chicago to Champaign every day, as well as 1 trips on the weekends, with prices starting from £9.

  • The City of New Orleans is an Amtrak route that runs daily trains from Chicago to New Orleans and vice versa. The City of New Orleans includes a sightseer lounge with panoramic windows for the best views of the five states along the route. Affordable Coach seats cost about for a trip from Chicago to Champaign. However, the City of New Orleans also offers private roomettes and bedrooms for added comfort and luxury (and a higher price). Passengers who book sleeper accommodations will enjoy included meals, and all passengers can stop into the cafe car to purchase meals and snacks.

  • Since 1973, Amtrak's Illini Service has provided reliable train transportation to 11 Illinois cities. The Illini operates as an evening commuter train from Chicago to Carbondale, while its sister train, the Amtrak Saluki, runs the morning route. Commuters rely on this service as a safe and convenient transportation option every day. Each train offers WiFi and power outlets, plus a cafe car and business class seating. Illini trains meet the highest federal standard for reducing emissions, with up to 90% less greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Since its inception in 2006, the Amtrak Saluki line has offered daily train trips between Chicago and Carbondale. The Amtrak Saluki operates along 500 kilometers of railroad, stopping at numerous midwestern towns like Kankakee, Rantoul, and Effingham. The trains on this line are equipped with onboard WiFi, power outlets, air conditioning, and a cafe car, with the option to upgrade to business class seating. This line is known for using trains that produce 90% fewer carbon emissions than other trains, meaning that your trip is green as well as convenient.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, there are trains that can take you the entire way from Chicago to Champaign. However, there are also some trips on this route that require you to board another vehicle, such as a bus or a shuttle, during your journey. This is worth paying attention to as you book your trip, since a direct train may be preferable for its speed and convenience.
The distance between Chicago and Champaign is approximately 126 miles, or 203 kilometers. The average train journey between these two cities takes 3 hours and 16 minutes, although the absolute fastest you could get there is 2 hours and 24 minutes. Although it takes a couple of hours each way, it's still possible to make a round trip in a single day. Since most trains are equipped with Wi-Fi, you should be able to browse the Internet or get some work done during your journey.

Wednesday tends to be the busiest day of the week with travelers taking trains from Chicago to Champaign. Ticket price also tend to be more expensive on Wednesday than other days. If you are hoping to have more room on the train and even save some change check out travel options on Monday instead, as less people travel then and deals are more likely to be found.

The earliest train departs Chicago at 08:00 while the last train of the day leaves at 20:00. To see all scheduled departure times, use the search function on this page to get the full schedule for your specific travel dates.

There are 4 scheduled trains on most days. 3 of these are direct connections to Champaign. While direct trains may still make stops along the way, you will not need to switch trains at any point. If you're looking to get to your destination faster, a direct train is the convenient and time-efficient choice.

You can also take a train for your return trip from Champaign to Chicago.

City Information

Chicago

Known for its innovative architecture, cultural contributions to jazz and house music, and of course that irresistible deep-dish pizza, the many sights and experiences in Chicago make it one of the best urban vacation destinations for millennials and a top destination in Illinois.

You can't beat the views of the city and Lake Michigan from the SkyDeck in the Willis Tower; at over 1,300 feet, this is the highest observation deck in the U.S. Snap that classic selfie with the Bean in Millennium Park, then wander the many museums in nearby Grant Park. Navy Pier is a popular tourist hotspot for its parks, restaurants, and attractions right on Lake Michigan, and baseball fans will find paradise in Wrigleyville, home to the Chicago Cubs' Wrigley Field and sports bars galore.

Chicago's enormous parks offer plentiful opportunities for outdoor activities in gorgeous urban settings. Many companies offer kayak rentals or boat tours on the Chicago River, with special tours running on Saint Patrick's Day, when the entire river is dyed green. When you’re ready to buy some souvenirs from your epic trip, hit the big brand stores on the Magnificent Mile, or shop local in neighborhoods like Andersonville and Wicker Park. And don't miss the chance to laugh until you cry at The Second City comedy theater, famous for launching the careers of comedians like Tina Fey and Stephen Colbert.

Chicago is one of the biggest transportation hubs in the Midwest, and provides easy access to nearby destinations ideal for day trips, as well as international travel from two airports. Thanks to plenty of bus and train stations throughout the city, getting to the Windy City is a breeze.

Champaign

Champaign, IL - CHM-0

Image credit: Unsplash

Champaign, IL - CHM-1

Image credit: Unsplash

Champaign, IL - CHM-2

Image credit: Pixabay

A significant hub for the Silicone Prairie, Champaign is a stunning city with many exciting landmarks to visit. The downtown area of Champaign is perhaps its busiest area, with over 40 different bars, art galleries, and boutique shops for you to enjoy. To enjoy arthouse films or independent productions, head over to the Art Theater, which also hosts special screenings. The campustown area near the University of Illinois hosts not only cheap eateries but also fine dining spots. The area tends to get crowded at night since students will be out on the street to enjoy the hopping nightlife.

As a busy college town, Champaign naturally has a very vibrant food scene with many excellent dining options. Radio Maria is a unique Spanish establishment with very colorful Spanish decorations and amazing tapas dishes. Those who want something more exotic and exciting could check out DESTIHL, which offers unique home-cooked dishes and great artisan beers.

The Illinois Terminal is Champaign's primary bus and train station, served by Amtrak, Burlington Trailways, Jefferson Lines, and Greyhound. From Champaign, you can continue your journey and visit some of the other top destinations in Illinois.

Station Information

Where is the train station in Chicago?

Chicago, IL - Union Station - CHIUST-0

Image credit: Jeramey Jannene

Link to image attribution

Main departure station: Chicago (Union Station), Illinois

The historic Chicago Union Station is the United States' third busiest train station and a hub for 15 Amtrak train lines with destinations throughout the country. The station also serves bus carriers like Greyhound, Indian Trails and Jefferson Lines, and offers connections to Metra commuter lines. Union Station is also just a quick walk to the nearest Chicago L lines. The current station was built in 1925, to replace the original one dating back to 1881, and today wows visitors with its impressive facade, massive columns, and opulent Great Hall. Located right in downtown and adjacent to the Chicago Loop, Union Station is equipped with many services and amenities, including phone charging stations, shops, and various food and drink options.

All train stations in Chicago:

  • Chicago (Union Station), Illinois

Where is the train station in Champaign?

Illinois Term - 45 E University Ave  - CHMAMT-0

Image credit: Beyond My Ken

Link to image attribution

Main arrival station: Illinois Term - 45 E University Ave

The Illinois Terminal is located at 45 East University Avenue in Champaign. The transport center opened in 1999, and now provides bus and train service in the Champaign-Urbana area. The terminal is served by Amtrak, Burlington Trailways, Greyhound, Jefferson Lines, and local mass transit. Make sure to wait in the correct station building; Champaign’s old train station, dating to 1898, is just across the street. The Illinois Terminal offers short-term parking, fast food, and even meeting spaces and banquet halls. Thanks to the station’s convenient location, some of the best restaurants and bars in downtown Champaign are just a short walk away.

Train stations in Champaign:

  • Illinois Term - 45 E University Ave

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