Amtrak and the Illinois Department of Transportation (Illinois DOT) are adding the Chicago – Champaign - Carbondale route of the Illini and Saluki trains to a pilot project that allows travelers to bring their pets along on trips to and from Chicago and Downstate Illinois.
Small pets have been carried between Chicago and Quincy on Illinois Zephyr and Carl Sandburg trains since April, with almost 20 small animals safely transported.
Although the test was scheduled to end in November, Amtrak and Illinois jointly decided to give the idea an extended trial, through April 26, 2015.
Ticketing and travel with pets can originate throughout the day in Chicago, Carbondale, Champaign and Galesburg, while the service is only available during afternoon departures in Homewood and Naperville. Advance reservations are required and a surcharge of $25 will be assessed for travel. Dogs or cats up to 20 - pounds each will be accepted in carriers such as those used in airplane cabins and placed under the seat of each pet owner.
Amtrak is America’s Railroad®, the nation’s intercity passenger rail service and its high - speed rail operator.