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Amtrak Baggage Check, Carry On and Security Rules

What kind and how many bags can I bring on Amtrak trains? What's prohibited?


Amtrak allows different numbers and sizes of bags depending on your ticket. Oversized items, like snowboards, are checked at the station. Learn more below.
Amtrak Checked Baggage and Security Rules

Amtrak Checked Baggage and Security Rules

© Kathleen Crislip
You're reading about packing for Amtrak train travel and Amtrak security. To jump elsewhere on the train, choose from the list below.

Know about Amtrak baggage rules, and Amtrak security rules, before packing:

Carry-On - Coach Baggage

Amtrak coach passengers can bring two carry-ons plus a personal item like a messenger bag. Limitations:

  • No more than 50 lbs.
  • 28x22x14 inches.
  • Skis, snowboards, and bicycles are usually checked.

Amtrak Sleeper Baggage

With a sleeper ticket, you can bring three bags aboard to store on the lower level or in your room. Limitations:

  • Excess bags - $10.00 per.
  • No more than 50 lbs. per bag.
  • 36x36x36 inches.
  • Skis, snowboards, and bicycles are usually checked.

Checked Baggage

Big items, like snowboards, must be checked.
  • Ensure you can check items when you buy your Amtrak ticket; generally, you'll have to be boarding at a station where the train stops long enough to allow loading of checked bags.
  • You'll receive a claim check ticket after checking a bag; have it ready inside the station (above) when you claim bags.
  • According to Amtrak.com: $5 per item handling charges apply to "special items" like snowboards, bikes, etc.

Amtrak Security Rules

Just like airport security rules, Amtrak security rules prohibit carrying some things aboard -- directly from Amtrak.com, these are prohibited on board by Amtrak security:

  • Any type of gun, firearm, ammunition, explosives, or weapon
  • Incendiaries, including flammable gases, liquids and fuels
  • Large, sharp objects such as axes, ice picks and swords
  • Corrosive or dangerous chemicals or materials, such as liquid bleach, tear gas, mace, radioactive and harmful bacteriological materials
  • Batteries with acid that can spill or leak (except those batteries used in motorized wheelchairs or similar devices for mobility-impaired passengers)
  • Club-like items, such as billy clubs and nightsticks

Amtrak.com says: "Laptop computers and handheld devices may be carried onboard...Passengers may declare additional valuation up to $2,500 upon payment of the applicable charge."

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