Some Amtrak Service Cuts Take Effect in July

Amtrak’s plans to reduce the frequency of operation of its New York-Miami trains will mean there will be no connections to and from Florida on some days in Washington  and New York.

The passenger carrier plans on July 6 to begin operating the Silver Meteor four times a week and the Silver Star three times a week.

It is the first step of a larger plan to reduce operations of all long-distance trains except the Auto Train to less than daily service on Oct. 1.

The Silver Meteor will depart New York Monday through Thursday, and Miami Sunday through Wednesday.

The Silver Star will operate Friday through Sunday southbound and Thursday through Saturday northbound.

The New York-Savannah, Georgia, Palmetto will for now continue to operate daily.

The July schedule changes will preclude connections on some days to Florida from the Capitol Limited, Lake Shore Limited, and Cardinal.

Cross-Florida travel and service to South Carolina’s state capital, Columbia, will only be possible on different days around weekends.

A Trains magazine analysis noted that during May the combined ridership of the Silver Star and Silver Meteor was 7.2 million passenger miles generating $1.4 million of revenue.

That compares to 5.2 million passenger miles and $2.4 million in revenue for all Northeast Corridor trains between Boston and Washington.

Amtrak has said it it reducing the frequency of operation of its long distance trains due to steep ridership declines during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The carrier also projects that ridership during federal fiscal year 2021 will be half of what it normally would be.

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