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Princeton to Chicago train

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Princeton - Chicago Train Schedule

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Trip Summary

3 trains operate daily from Princeton to Chicago. The train trip from Princeton to Chicago is usually about 2 hours and 6 minutes long. However, traveling on the fastest Amtrak Illinois Zephyr train can get you there in as little as 2 hours and 2 minutes.

Distance101 mi (163 km)
Fastest train2h 2m
Lowest price$8.00
Trains per day3
Most frequent serviceAmtrak Carl Sandburg
Train lines3

Train Trip Reviews from Wanderu Customers

Average score for trains from Princeton to Chicago

(Based on 10 ratings and reviews)

4.5

4.0

Shayla

October 31, 2023- Solo travel

Amtrak Southwest Chief

Pros: Chuck the announcer was spooky. Cons: The cars themselves are just very outdated and gross. It smells like a bowling alley in there. Tips: bring nose plugs and ear plus.

4.0

Daniel

April 19, 2023- Visiting family

Amtrak Illinois Zephyr

Pros: Comfortable and stress free trip to downtown Chicago. Cons: Departure 15 min late, arrival 30 min late. Not all Amtrak’s fault but need to eliminate delays to be dependable.

5.0

Marcia

April 2, 2022- Visiting family

Amtrak Carl Sandburg

Great. Keep that route going between Princeton IL and Chicago!!

5.0

Kathleen

March 12, 2022- Vacation

Amtrak Carl Sandburg

Cons: Restrooms need to be cleaned regularly. Tips: Get in line early as no assigned seats and if you want to sit with your group and get a seat you have to fight.

5.0

Mya

December 15, 2021- Visiting family

Amtrak Illinois Zephyr

Arriving early

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

In the last 30 days, the average cost of a train ticket from Princeton to Chicago was $8.00. This is a fantastic deal for train travel. You have the best chances of scoring the cheapest ticket to Chicago if you book your train tickets at least 27 days in advance. Waiting to purchase until the day of your trip could end up costing you an extra $22.50.

Monthly avg. prices

$50$40$30$20$10JJASONDJFMAM
You can find the lowest prices on this route during January. This time of year offers the best deals on train tickets from Princeton to Chicago, with the average price at just $17. Train tickets on this route are most expensive in August, when the average price goes up to $28. 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

$50$40$30$20$103020100

By booking your train trip from Princeton to Chicago on Wanderu at least 27 days ahead of time, you can save about $22.50 on your ticket. Waiting until the last minute means missing out on these savings!

Which train should you take from Princeton to Chicago?

There are 3 train lines with service from Princeton to Chicago. There is only one daily train on each service.

TrainDaily TripsAvg. TimeAvg. Price
Amtrak Carl Sandburg12h 4m$15.00
Amtrak Illinois Zephyr12h 2m$25.71
Amtrak Southwest Chief12h 12m$48.58
  • The Amtrak Carl Sandburg, named after the Pulitzer-winning author, is a sister service to the Illinois Zephyr. Both operate daily services between Chicago and Quincy with additional stops in Naperville and Kewanee. Whether you buy a coach class or business class ticket, you'll have plenty of legroom and complimentary WiFi, plus access to refreshments at the onboard cafe.

  • The Illinois Zephyr is a passenger train operated by Amtrak, running between Quincy and Chicago. Taking the train from Princeton to Chicago is a comfortable option, and tickets on this route cost on average. The Illinois Zephyr and its sister train, the Carl Sandburg, serve one of Amtrak's most popular lines. The train features amenities such as airline-style coach seating, a cafe on board, power outlets, restrooms, and Wi-Fi.

  • 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 Princeton to Chicago in about 2 hours and 12 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.

Frequently Asked Questions

The distance between Princeton and Chicago is approximately 101 miles, or 163 kilometers. The average train journey between these two cities takes 2 hours and 6 minutes, although the absolute fastest you could get there is 2 hours and 2 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.

Trains from Princeton to Chicago are the most crowded on Sunday. Tickets also tend to be more expensive then. If you are looking for a great deal on your train tickets or just want extra room to stretch out, consider traveling on Tuesday instead, as it tends to be the least crowded day of the week.

The earliest train departs Princeton at 8:00am while the last train of the day leaves at 7:00pm. 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 3 daily scheduled trains, all of which are direct trains that take you the entire way from Princeton to Chicago.

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

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.

Station Information

Where is the train station in Princeton?

Main departure station: 107 Bicentennial Dr

There is one train station in Princeton.

All train stations in Princeton:

  • 107 Bicentennial Dr

Where is the train station in Chicago?

Chicago, IL - Union Station - CHIUST-0

Image credit: Jeramey Jannene

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Main arrival 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

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