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Trains from Chicago to Los Angeles

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Chicago - Los Angeles Train Timetable

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Train Trip Information: Chicago to Los Angeles

There are 41 daily trains from Chicago to Los Angeles. Traveling by train from Chicago to Los Angeles usually takes around 72 hours and 11 minutes, but the fastest Amtrak Southwest Chief train can make the trip in 43 hours and 10 minutes.

Distance1742 mi (2804 km)
Fastest train43h 10m
Lowest price€140.43
Trains per day1
Most frequent serviceAmtrak
Train lines3

Train Trip Reviews from Wanderu Customers

Overall score for trains from Chicago to Los Angeles

(Based on 2 ratings and reviews)

5.0

5.0

ed

30 March 2022- Vacation

Amtrak Southwest Chief

Pros: Meals were great. Staff was great. Cons: A few to many stops but nothing unexpected. Being 1.5 hours late was disappointing. Tips: we stayed in a cabin and wish I had upgraded to a full bedroom.

Pros: Meals were great. Staff was great. Cons: A few to many stops but nothing unexpected. Being 1.5 hours late was disappointing. Tips: we stayed in a cabin and wish I had upgraded to a full bedroom.

5.0

Manitya

18 January 2022- Solo travel

Amtrak Southwest Chief

Pros: Amtrak coffee and observation car. Cons: Wifi should be available . Tips: I insist to travel by Amtrak for my next visit.

Pros: Amtrak coffee and observation car. Cons: Wifi should be available . Tips: I insist to travel by Amtrak for my next visit.

Chicago to Los Angeles Route Map

Chicago Los Angeles

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

In the last month, €238.08 was the average price of a train ticket from Chicago to Los Angeles. Given how far apart Chicago and Los Angeles are from each other, there's no getting around the fact that most train tickets are on the pricier side. You can expect to find tickets at that price or lower if you book your trip at least 25 days in advance. Otherwise, expect to pay around €176.26 more than that for a same-day booking.

Average prices by travel date

€361€240€120MayMay

Over the next 30 days, the average cost of a one-way train trip from Chicago to Los Angeles will vary between €229 and €349. Planning a train trip to Los Angeles within the upcoming week? The cheapest train ticket you can find from Chicago over the next 7 days is €233. 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

€289€231€173€115€58JJASONDJFMAM

If you are trying to decide when to travel from Chicago to Los Angeles by train so you can score the best possible deal, your best bet would be to plan your trip for February. That’s when the average price for a train ticket is expected to be just €221 – the lowest of the year.

Alternatively, if you plan to travel from Chicago to Los Angeles in March, expect to spend more on your train trip, as the average ticket price usually surges to €284 at that time of year. However, if you book your trip ahead of time, you have a high chance of scoring a ticket at a lower price.

Prices as travel date approaches

€409€327€245€164€823020100

If you want to score the best deal, you should plan to book your train trip online on Wanderu at least 25 days ahead of time. If you do that, your train ticket to Los Angeles from Chicago will be about €176.26 cheaper compared to what you would pay if you book at the last minute.

Which train should you take from Chicago to Los Angeles?

There are 3 train lines with service from Chicago to Los Angeles. Amtrak is the most popular choice with travelers, offering scheduled service on 40 trains each day.

TrainDaily TripsAvg. TimeAvg. Price
Amtrak403d 0h 41m€291.65
Amtrak Southwest Chief11d 19h 10m€258.75
Amtrak Texas Eagle12d 18h 6m€194.22
  • Amtrak

    Amtrak

    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 40 Amtrak trains from Chicago to Los Angeles every day, as well as 57 trips on the weekends, with prices starting from €153.

    AMT-0AMT-1AMT-2AMT-3AMT-4AMT-5AMT-6AMT-7AMT-8AMT-9
  • Amtrak Southwest Chief

    Amtrak Southwest Chief

    The Southwest Chief is a passenger train operated by America’s largest train service, Amtrak. The full route travels over 2,200 miles from Chicago to Los Angeles, which takes over 43 hours. The train covers the stretch from Chicago to Los Angeles in about 43 hours and 10 minutes. In addition to standard Coach Class seats, the Southwest Chief offers several sleeper cabin options on longer journeys. Amtrak’s Southwest Chief is consistently ranked as one of the most scenic train routes in America, thanks to the stunning views of the Painted Desert, the Red Cliffs of Sedona, and the Grand Canyon you’ll see from your train window.

  • Amtrak Texas Eagle

    Amtrak Texas Eagle

    The Amtrak Texas Eagle is a 1,306-mile train route from Chicago, Illinois to San Antonio, Texas. Because of the route’s length, the train offers sleeper car options in addition to standard coach seats. Like most Amtrak trains, the Texas Eagle features power outlets at each seat, restrooms in each car, and a cafe car where passengers can purchase food and drinks. A journey from Chicago to Los Angeles on the Texas Eagle usually takes 66 hours and 6 minutes, which is best spent enjoying the incredible scenery along the way.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to travel by train from Chicago to Los Angeles during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Our train partners have implemented several different policies to keep you safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. From limiting vehicle capacity to enhancing cleaning protocols and upgrading air filters, train carriers are committed to maintaining a safe environment. For details on what each company is doing to ensure their fleet remains safe for travel, click here.

In addition, federal law requires all train passengers to wear a face covering for the entire duration of the trip. Please make sure you are wearing a face mask or you may not be allowed to board the train.

Please visit our COVID-19 Travel Guide for more information on all carrier policies and the latest travel advisories issued by every U.S. state, Canadian province, and European country.

Can you take a train all the way from Chicago to Los Angeles?

Yes, there are trains that can take you the entire way from Chicago to Los Angeles. 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.

How long is the train journey from Chicago to Los Angeles?

The distance between Chicago and Los Angeles is approximately 1742 miles, or 2804 kilometers. The average train journey between these two cities takes 72 hours and 11 minutes, although the absolute fastest you could get there is 43 hours and 10 minutes.

Looking for ways to pass the time? Most trains are equipped with Wi-Fi, which means you can stream music, browse social media or get some work done during your ride. That said, in case your train has a spotty signal, or is among the few without Wi-Fi, we also recommend downloading TV shows and movies to your mobile device in advance of your trip. That way the ride will fly by whatever the Wi-Fi situation.

When are trains the most crowded?

On a weekly basis, the greatest number of passengers tend to travel by trains from Chicago to Los Angeles on Friday. Tickets for Friday tend to also be the most expensive. For savvy travelers looking for cheaper priced tickets search for travel departing on Monday. Monday also tend to have less passengers which may make boarding faster and let you snag your perfect seat.

When are the first and last trains of the day?

The earliest train departs Chicago at 00:00 while the last train of the day leaves at 23:00. To see all scheduled departure times, use the search function on this page to get the full schedule for your specific travel dates.

Is there a direct train from Chicago to Los Angeles?

There are 41 scheduled trains on most days. There is one direct train, which you can stay on for the entire journey from Chicago to Los Angeles. In contrast, taking a non-direct train would require you to transfer trains during your trip.

You can also take a train for your return trip from Los Angeles 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.

Los Angeles

Los Angeles is the undisputed world capital of the entertainment business. Because of that, the City of Angels is where you will find some of the most iconic landmarks of the film and music industries, including the world-famous Walk of Fame and Dolby Theatre (home of the Academy Awards) on Hollywood Boulevard, the easily recognizable Capitol Records building at Hollywood & Vine, and the LA Live complex in Downtown Los Angeles.

The best part of LA is that it has something to offer for people of all interests: outdoor enthusiasts can hike up to the Hollywood sign, fashion aficionados can go shopping in Beverly Hills, art lovers can check out the prominent Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) in the Miracle Mile district, and those looking for a fun night out can go bar-hopping in West Hollywood. Are you a Pokémon GO addict? Well then this is the place for you because LA is the best city to catch the rarest Pokémon in the U.S.. And if you want to want to experience the famed golden coast of Southern California for yourself, head west to Santa Monica and Venice for a refreshing dip in the Pacific Ocean.

With one of the biggest airports on the West Coast and several bus and train stops across the county, Los Angeles makes it easy to travel elsewhere in California, visit the neighboring Nevada, Arizona and Mexico, or take a flight to pretty much any other part of the world.

Station Information

Where is the train station in Chicago?

New York, NY - Penn Station - NYCPEN-0

Departure stations

Pennsylvania Station, or just Penn Station, is the main train station in New York City. All Amtrak trains to and from NYC use Penn Station as their only train stop in Manhattan. Penn Station offers easy connections to various other types of transportation, including commuter rail (the Long Island Rail Road and the NJ Transit both operate out of Penn Station), airport transit, and six lines of the NYC Subway, making it the busiest train station in the Western Hemisphere. Located in the heart of Manhattan, right by the world-famous Madison Square Garden, Penn Station is close to various points of interest such as Times Square and the Empire State Building, as well as many restaurants and retail stores.

All train stations in Chicago:

  • Penn Station

  • 41 Central St

  • 110 Callahan Dr

  • Union Station

  • State Street Station

  • Union Station - 1 Union Pl

  • 200 Cleveland Memorial Shoreway

  • 2702 W Washington St

  • 485 West Van Vleek Street

  • MLK Plaza - 415 Emerald Ave

  • Union Station Transportation Center

  • 7519 Staples Mill Rd

  • Harbor Park Station

  • 30th St Station - 2955 Market St

  • Newark Penn Station

Need a return trip from Los Angeles to Chicago?

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