You can’t redeem points on Amtrak on these dates in 2015.

The other day, I learned a hard (yet, obvious for me…though, not at the time) lesson that Amtrak Guest Rewards points can’t be used on every train, on every day of the year.

It caused me to have to purchase a cash ticket for a train, and while still not terribly expensive, since it was the cheapest possible First Class ticket that’s ever offered on the Acela between the two city pairs I was traveling, it was still a wrench in my plans.

So, I wanted to take a look at the 2015 blackout dates for Amtrak travel. These are the dates you are not allowed to redeem any Amtrak Guest Rewards points for all trains.

Plan ahead – if you want to travel over the busy Thanksgiving or Christmas time period, you won’t be able to use points. And, unlike airlines, there’s no chance of any “award space” opening up, since these are true blackout dates. If you’re an Amtrak Select Plus or Select Executive member, you can use a “rule buster” to still travel on these blackout dates, though you’ll pay almost double the points to do so.


 

2015 Amtrak Guest Rewards Blackout Dates

January

  • January 2-3

February

  • February 13
  • February 16

April

  • April 2-3
  • April 6

May

  • May 22
  • May 25

July

  • July 2-3
  • July 5

September

  • September 4
  • September 7

October

  • October 12

November

  • November 24-25
  • November 28-29

December

  • December 19-24
  • December 26-31

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Comments

  1. Nigel says

    I would add that Amtrak can actually sell out some trains on popular dates around Holidays – particularly in the North-East. And if you do need to purchase a ticket it is best to do it early – prices increase as you get closer to departure. You can always pay the difference to change to a different day/time if that become necessary, AS LONG AS you make the change before departure of the train. The same applies to reward tickets – they can be re-deposited to your account if you cancel in advance.

    From the Amtrak Guest Rewards web site, it looks to me as though there is an extra blackout date in 2015:

    Sun Jan 4th

    And the December/January 2016 dates are shown as:

    Sat Dec 19th – Weds Dec 23rd (perhaps strange that 12/24 is not included?)
    Sat Dec 26th – Weds Dec 30th
    Sat Jan 2nd – Sun Jan 3rd

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