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About Amtrak Illinois Zephyr

The Illinois Zephyr is a passenger train operated by Amtrak, providing travel between Quincy and Chicago. The Illinois Zephyr performs 15 trips daily stopping at 10 cities, including Macomb, Princeton, and Plano. Notable attractions near these destinations include the Willis Tower, DuPage Children's Museum, Naperville Riverwalk, and easy access to the Chicago Loop.

In November of 1971, the Amtrak Illinois Zephyr started its service to connect students from Quincy University and residents in Western Illinois to East and Northeastern Illinois. It has since become the longest continuously running state-sponsored train. The Illinois Zephyr still has strong support from the towns and cities it passes through. In 2006, Amtrak added the Zephyr's sister train, the Carl Sandburg, to the same route to provide additional trips for passengers. Together, the trains serve one of Amtrak's most successful routes.

Despite the Illinois Zephyr's long history, the accommodations onboard are anything but dated. The Amtrak Illinois Zephyr features airline-style coach seating, a cafe on board, power outlets, restrooms, and free Wi-Fi. Travelers also love the overall cleanliness of the train and the helpful service from the staff.

The Illinois Zephyr has been available to book on Wanderu since 2015. You can compare tickets and prices from all Amtrak lines and trains on Wanderu and earn Amtrak Guest Rewards. Whether onboard the Illinois Zephyr or the Carl Sandburg, find the cheapest train tickets to travel between Quincy and Chicago with Wanderu at no additional cost.

Contact Amtrak Illinois Zephyr

Phone number: US: 1 (800) 872-7245

Amtrak Illinois Zephyr Amenities

Air conditioningAir conditioning
RestroomRestroom
Extra legroomExtra legroom
Loyalty rewardsLoyalty rewards
Power outletPower outlet
SnacksSnacks
WiFiWiFi

Quickview

Amtrak Illinois Zephyr train coverage

Daily Trips15
stations10
cities10
countries1

What travelers are saying about Amtrak Illinois Zephyr

Here’s what Wanderu users who have booked trips with Amtrak Illinois Zephyr had to say about their travel experience.

Traveling During COVID-19

“They took COVID safety precautions seriously.”
based on 16 reviews

Onboard Experience

“The WiFi actually worked for the entire trip”
based on 31 reviews
“I’ll travel with them again just for the staff!”
based on 35 reviews
“Really cheap tickets and really good service.”
based on 40 reviews
“The train got there on time.”
based on 37 reviews
“Seats were really comfy and spacious”
based on 33 reviews
“The train was almost suspiciously clean”
based on 40 reviews

Amtrak Illinois Zephyr reviews from Wanderu customers

Overall review score for Amtrak Illinois Zephyr

(Based on 42 reviews)

4.5
Ratings (Out of 5)
Comfort

4.3

Timeliness

4.5

Staff

4.5

Value

4.2

Condition

4.8

Amtrak Illinois Zephyr passenger reviews

5.0

Marshall

23 August 2022- Solo travel

Chicago to Princeton

Pros: Everything went smoothly as usual. Cons: The food in the cafe & the alcohol available could be better. Tips: Highly recommend Amtrak. Rode it several times never any issues. Cheaper than gas.

Pros: Everything went smoothly as usual. Cons: The food in the cafe & the alcohol available could be better. Tips: Highly recommend Amtrak. Rode it several times never any issues. Cheaper than gas.

5.0

Carol

3 July 2022- Visiting family

Quincy to Chicago

Pros: Not having to drive. Cons: Nothing.

Pros: Not having to drive. Cons: Nothing.

5.0

Michael

30 June 2022- Solo travel

Chicago to Galesburg

Pros: Very comfortable. Cons: N/A. Tips: No.

Pros: Very comfortable. Cons: N/A. Tips: No.

1.0

Mary M

26 June 2022- Couples trip

Chicago to Kewanee

Need to be on time

Need to be on time

5.0

Janice

18 June 2022- Vacation

Galesburg to Chicago

Pros: For an older woman, traveling with family, I’m happy to say it was a very nice experience. Comfortable temperature, and comfortable seats. As a tall woman, I was glad to see the tall seats and the foot rests, too. The windows! Were large and gave a large view o...

Pros: For an older woman, traveling with family, I’m happy to say it was a very nice experience. Comfortable temperature, and comfortable seats. As a tall woman, I was glad to see the tall seats and the foot rests, too. The windows! Were large and gave a large view of the landscape; the curtains were effective when they were used. Cons: Trash area was quite small. Tips: Just enjoy!

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Amtrak Illinois Zephyr Routes & Network

Amtrak Illinois Zephyr’s train network features 58 train routes that connect 10 cities serving 10 stations. On average, Amtrak Illinois Zephyr performs about 15 train trips every day. The top cities to which Amtrak Illinois Zephyr offers the highest number of daily train service include Princeton and Chicago.

Top Cities Served by Amtrak Illinois Zephyr

CityRouteEarliest trainLatest train
Chicago311:12 am2:21 pm
Macomb211:12 am1:38 am
Galesburg211:12 am1:04 am
Quincy210:55 pm2:14 am
Mendota211:12 am11:30 pm
Kewanee112:37 pm11:53 pm
Princeton212:37 pm11:30 pm
Naperville111:12 am11:14 pm
Plano111:12 am11:14 pm

Most popular Amtrak Illinois Zephyr routes

The train from Princeton to Chicago is Amtrak Illinois Zephyr’s most popular route. Trips from Naperville to Galesburg and Chicago to Plano are also highly popular.

Top Amtrak Illinois Zephyr routes

RouteDaily TripsDurationPrice
Princeton to Chicago12h 3m€15
Naperville to Galesburg12h 6m€18
Chicago to Plano10h 57m€10
Naperville to Macomb12h 44m€21
Chicago to Kewanee12h 8m€20
Mendota to Chicago11h 41m€12
Quincy to Chicago14h 21m€34
Chicago to Macomb13h 19m€26
Galesburg to Chicago12h 56m€24

Amtrak Illinois Zephyr Cancellation Policy

All Amtrak Illinois Zephyr tickets can be cancelled for a full refund within the first 24 hours after purchase. If more than 24 hours have passed, the cancellation policy and change fee structure for Amtrak bookings depend on the type of fare you purchased:

Saver Fare tickets: A 25% fee applies for any changes. If you cancel the trip, you will receive an eVoucher worth 75% of the original ticket price.

Value Fare tickets: No change fees and fully refundable up to 15 or more days before departure. If cancelled less than 14 days before departure, a 25% cancellation fee applies.

Flexible, Business and Premium Fare tickets: No change fees and fully refundable if cancelled or changed before departure.

Tickets are non-refundable and non-exchangeable after the train has departed, so be sure to make your updates as soon as possible if your travel plans change.

If your Amtrak Illinois Zephyr ticket is eligible for change or cancellation, you can do that by calling Amtrak’s customer service phone number at 1 (800) 872-7245. To cancel or change your booking online, simply go to www.amtrak.com and click on the “Modify Trip” tab in the upper right corner.

Wanderu also offers an affordable trip protection option by Allianz Global Assistance that you can purchase when booking your tickets. In addition to 24-hour assistance during your trip and coverage for lost or damaged baggage, trip protection can help you get your money back in case you need to cancel or change your trip. You can file a claim to have any Amtrak change or cancellation fees reimbursed if you cannot travel due to covered reasons such as illness, extreme weather, or required work shifts.

Amtrak Illinois Zephyr Train Guide & FAQs

Do Amtrak Illinois Zephyr trains have WiFi?

Yes, Amtrak Illinois Zephyr offers WiFi on their trains. Although most trips with Amtrak Illinois Zephyr will have WiFi as advertised, some trains might not come equipped with WiFi and onboard WiFi can lose its connection in rural areas. We recommend you bring a book or download a movie just to play it safe. Amtrak Illinois Zephyr WiFi is generally best used for surfing the web, checking emails and chatting with friends; you shouldn’t count on the WiFi to binge watch your favorite show.

Are there power points or USB points on the train?

Yes, there are power outlets onboard Amtrak Illinois Zephyr trains. You can generally find one or two sockets per row of seats, so be a good traveller and check if your seat neighbor might want to charge up their devices as well. With the onboard power outlets, you can charge both a computer and USB devices with a USB power adapter that typically comes with most phones and tablets.

Since Amtrak Illinois Zephyr might sometimes use replacement train vehicles, not all trips are guaranteed to have power points. We recommend to bring a power bank to charge your phone for all trips over 2 hours, just in case.

What is Amtrak Illinois Zephyr's schedule?

On a typical day, Amtrak Illinois Zephyr has 15 scheduled train trips in total. However, the exact departure and arrival times vary depending on the day and route. The best way to find the exact schedule for your trip is to use the search tool on this page.

Can you pick up will call tickets at the station?

No, Amtrak Illinois Zephyr does not offer will call tickets. You should purchase your tickets online and make sure you have everything you need to board before you arrive at the station.

Do you need an ID to get on the train?

Yes, Amtrak Illinois Zephyr requires you to present an ID to an agent to be allowed to board the train. Make sure you have identification issued by a government agency that meets the carrier’s requirements. Alternative IDs, such as a college ID, won’t work.

What are Amtrak Illinois Zephyr’s COVID-19 policies?

Visit our COVID-19 Travel Guide to view the most up-to-date information about Amtrak Illinois Zephyr’s cleaning protocols and adjusted ticket change policies during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Are there toilets on Amtrak Illinois Zephyr trains?

Yes, there are bathrooms on Amtrak Illinois Zephyr trains. The bathrooms are pretty basic and include a toilet, toilet paper and hand sanitizer. Most bathrooms don’t have running water. As you will be using a bathroom on a moving vehicle, please use caution and hold on to a rail at all times.

Are meals or beverages available?


Amtrak Illinois Zephyr provides snacks to satisfy your hunger during your travels. Be sure to pack a credit card and some cash in case you get hungry.

Do you have to print your Amtrak Illinois Zephyr ticket?

Amtrak Illinois Zephyr does not require a printed ticket to board the train. Instead, an eTicket is sent to you by email when you make your reservation. You can use your smartphone to show this eTicket to the ticketing agent as you board.

Does Amtrak Illinois Zephyr offer any premium features like extra legroom or movies?

Amtrak Illinois Zephyr goes the extra distance to deliver premium features to its customers.

Do you find yourself squished in a regular seat or just love having extra room to sprawl out? Well you’re in luck as Amtrak Illinois Zephyr offers extra legroom seating. Since there is no standard of what extra legroom is, the extra space you get may vary between train lines, but getting extra is always good.

Cheap Amtrak Illinois Zephyr tickets recently found on Wanderu

With 15 Amtrak Illinois Zephyr trips per day, there are a lot of great deals to uncover for the bargain hunter and Amtrak Illinois Zephyr tickets start at just €4.07. Check out some of the latest and greatest deals snatched up by Wanderu users.

How do I get the best deal on Amtrak Illinois Zephyr tickets?

Wanderu is the best place to score cheap Amtrak Illinois Zephyr tickets. Wanderu offers the lowest available fares every day and charges no extra booking fees. Plus, you can compare Amtrak Illinois Zephyr prices with trips offered by other train companies to be sure you’re getting the best deal on your tickets!

Pro travelers know that booking your ticket well in advance is key to finding the lowest price. Ticket prices normally go up the closer you get to the travel date, so don’t miss out on a good deal when you see one. If you can be flexible with your travel date, you can also get cheap tickets by traveling on weekdays instead of weekends.

When you’re ready to book, type your departure city and destination city in the search bar above, select your travel date, and let Wanderu work its magic to show you all of the best bus and train ticket prices available for your trip. Pick the ticket that’s best for your budget, schedule, and preferences, and complete the booking right on Wanderu to secure your great deal.

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