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Compare train tickets from East Lansing to Chicago

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East Lansing-Chicago Train Schedule

Trip Summary

There is one daily train from East Lansing to Chicago. Traveling by train from East Lansing to Chicago usually takes around 3 hours and 51 minutes, but some trains might arrive slightly earlier or later than scheduled.

Distance171 mi (276 km)
Fastest train3h 51m
Lowest price$30.00
Trains per day1
Most frequent serviceAmtrak Blue Water
Train lines1

Train Trip Reviews from Wanderu Customers

Overall score for trains from East Lansing, MI to Chicago, IL

(Based on 16 ratings and reviews)

4.5

4.0

Betsy

February 28, 2020 - Couples trip

Amtrak Blue Water

Pros: We arrived early which was good because I was freezing. Cons: Serious heating and air condition issues both coming and going! Serious issues. Serious. Tips: Dress in layers because you never know how the HVAC will work. Also, be prepared to travel the enitre way ...

Pros: We arrived early which was good because I was freezing. Cons: Serious heating and air condition issues both coming and going! Serious issues. Serious. Tips: Dress in layers because you never know how the HVAC will work. Also, be prepared to travel the enitre way facing backwards.

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4.0

Dana

February 13, 2020 - Visiting friends

Amtrak Blue Water

Pros: I appreciated how promptly the train departed, as well as the communication between staff and patrons concerning delays. I also appreciated the efforts of staff to encourage people to stow their belongings so that empty seats were clear and easy to find when boar...

Pros: I appreciated how promptly the train departed, as well as the communication between staff and patrons concerning delays. I also appreciated the efforts of staff to encourage people to stow their belongings so that empty seats were clear and easy to find when boarding. Cons: I believe that communication between trains could be improved to reduce delays. Our train had significant delays due to freight traffic when we were ironically just arriving in our destination city, which was incredibly frustrating. It took nearly two hours just to get through the city to the station- it made me wonder if something could have been done to prevent that. Tips: Take a train that is scheduled to arrive multiple hours before you need to be there just in case of delays, as they seem to be quite common.

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5.0

Maria Laura

December 26, 2019 - Solo travel

Amtrak Blue Water

It was easy and comfortable

It was easy and comfortable

5.0

Fahmi

December 24, 2019 - Vacation

Amtrak Blue Water

Pros: I love the scenery along the trip. Cons: Everything is excellent. Tips: Be at the station at least 30 minutes before boarding time.

Pros: I love the scenery along the trip. Cons: Everything is excellent. Tips: Be at the station at least 30 minutes before boarding time.

5.0

Levon

December 21, 2019 - Visiting family

Amtrak Blue Water

The best trip ever

The best trip ever

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

In the last month, $30.92 was the average price of a train ticket from East Lansing, MI to Chicago, IL. This is a good price that is inexpensive compared to most train fares. 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 $9.77 more than that for a same-day booking.

Average prices by travel date

$60$40$20JunJun

Over the next 30 days, the average cost of a one-way train trip from East Lansing to Chicago will vary between $30 and $47. Planning a train trip to Chicago within the upcoming week? The cheapest train ticket you can find from East Lansing over the next 7 days is $30. 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

$75$60$45$30$15JASONDJFMAMJ

If you are trying to decide when to travel from East Lansing to Chicago by train so you can score the best possible deal, your best bet would be to plan your trip for August. That’s when the average price for a train ticket is expected to be just $28 – the lowest of the year.

Alternatively, if you plan to travel from East Lansing to Chicago in May, expect to spend more on your train trip, as the average ticket price usually surges to $55 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

$50$40$30$20$103020100

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 Chicago from East Lansing will be about $9.77 cheaper compared to what you would pay if you book at the last minute.

Which train should you take from East Lansing to Chicago?

Amtrak Blue Water is the one and only train line which connects East Lansing, Michigan to Chicago, Illinois. Furthermore, there is only one train per day, so you will have to plan your travel around this limited availability. On the other hand, you won't have to spend a ton of time comparing a bunch of possible options.

TrainDaily TripsAvg. TimeAvg. Price
Amtrak Blue Water13h 51m$33.40

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to travel by train from East Lansing to Chicago 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.

How long is the train journey from East Lansing to Chicago?

The distance between East Lansing and Chicago is approximately 171 miles, or 276 kilometers. The average train journey between these two cities takes 3 hours and 51 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?

Trains from East Lansing to Chicago are the most crowded on Thursday. 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 Monday instead, as it tends to be the least crowded day of the week.

When are the first and last trains of the day?

Most days, there is only one train which leaves East Lansing at 8:00am and arrives in Chicago around 3 hours later.

Is there a direct train from East Lansing to Chicago?

Typically there is only one scheduled train per day. Luckily, this train will get you to Chicago with direct service. While there might still be stops along the way, you will not need to switch trains.

You can also take a train for your return trip from Chicago to East Lansing. If you're not not set on traveling by train, you could always take the bus from East Lansing to Chicago for $30.00.

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.

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 East Lansing?

Departure stations

There is one train station in East Lansing.

Where is the train station in Chicago?

Arrival stations

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.

Need a return trip from Chicago to East Lansing?

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