2021 Thanksgiving Travel Update

Grand Central Terminal on Thanksgiving Day (2014) | By Noel Y. Calingasan (via Flickr)

Now is the time to plan your trip and book your tickets if you are planning to travel by train during the Thanksgiving travel period.

The cost to travel on certain Amtrak trains during the holiday period will be much higher than normal and many trains will sell out — in fact some Amtrak trains in our region have already sold out, before and after the holiday (see the list at the end of the page).

To help with this process we have prepared a brief guide for train travel during this busy travel period.

Your Thanksgiving travel options

Option 1 | Amtrak Vermonter

Vermont – Northampton – NY Penn Station – Washington, DC

Pros
One-seat ride
Business class seating
Cafe car

Cons
Some trains are already sold out
High ticket prices on peak travel days
(As high as $103 between Northampton and NY Penn)

Fare and ticketing information for this option is available on the Vermonter page.

Option 2 | Valley Flyer connection with Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor service

Greenfield – Northampton – Springfield – Hartford – New Haven
– connecting to/from Amtrak service to NYC and points south

Pros
Scheduled connection with Amtrak in New Haven

Cons
Some connecting Amtrak trains to/from NYC are already sold out
High ticket prices on peak travel days
(As high as $129 between Northampton and NY Penn station)

Fare and ticket information for this option is available on the Valley Flyer page.

Option 3 | Valley Flyer connection with the Metro-North New Haven Line

Greenfield – Northampton – Springfield – Hartford – New Haven
– connecting to/from Metro-North to Grand Central Terminal NYC

Pros
Scheduled connection with Metro-North in New Haven
Much lower fares on peak days (half the cost of taking Amtrak)
Plenty of seats are still available

Cons
Trip requires two train tickets (an Amtrak ticket and a Metro-North ticket)

Fare and ticketing information for this option is available on the Valley Flyer page.

Here’s the current schedule for these three options —

Southbound schedule

Northbound schedule

Printable Schedule Overview: As of August 29, 2021 (PDF)

Option 4 | Amtrak from Springfield

Springfield – New Haven – NY Penn Station – Washington, DC

Pros
Multiple trains (6 – 9) daily

Cons
High ticket prices on peak travel days
Some trains are already sold out
Need to get yourself to/from Springfield Union Station

Fare and ticketing information of this option can be found on Amtrak.com.

Option 5 | Hartford Line from Springfield connection with to Metro-North

Springfield – Hartford – New Haven
– connecting to/from Metro-North to Grand Central Terminal NYC

Pros
Multiple trains (9 – 11) daily between Springfield and New Haven
Low fixed fares for travel on the Hartford Line

Cons
Need to get yourself to/from Springfield Union Station

Fare and ticketing information for this option can be found on the Hartford Line page.

Special notes for Options 4 & 5

Consider using the PVTA G73 Express bus to travel between Northampton and Springfield Union Station if you are traveling between Monday and Saturday.

If you are traveling on an Amtrak-operated Hartford Line train during the holiday period you should purchase your ticket from Amtrak and not from a CTrail ticket machine. With an Amtrak ticket in hand you are sure to get a seat on the train.


Sold out or nearly Sold Out Amtrak trips (as of Mon. 11/22/2021)

SOUTHBOUND
FROM Greenfield, Northampton or Holyoke
TO New York Penn Station

Sat. Nov 20th
Vermonter 57 (SOLD OUT)
Valley Flyer 461 (50%) –//– Northeast Regional 161 (80%)

Tues. Nov. 23rd
Vermonter 55 (SOLD OUT)
Valley Flyer 471 (60%) –//– Northeast Regional 171 (80%)

Wed. Nov. 24th
Vermonter 55 (90%)
Valley Flyer 495 (50%) –//– Northeast Regional 95 (90%)
Valley Flyer 471 (60%) –//– Northeast Regional 171 (SOLD OUT)

Sat. Nov. 27th
Vermonter 57 (SOLD OUT)
Valley Flyer 461 (60%) –//– Northeast Regional 161 (SOLD OUT)

Sun. Nov. 28th
Vermonter train 57 (SOLD OUT)
Valley Flyer 461 (60%) –//– Northeast Regional 161 (SOLD OUT)

NORTHBOUND
FROM New York Penn Station
TO Greenfield, Northampton, or Holyoke

Sun. Nov 21st
Vermonter 54 (90%)
Northeast Regional 88 (SOLD OUT) –//– Valley Flyer 488 (50%)

Mon. Nov 22nd
Vermonter 56 (90%)
Northeast Regional 94 (90%) –//– Valley Flyer 494 (40%)

Tues. Nov 23rd
Vermonter 56 (SOLD OUT)
Northeast Regional 94 (SOLD OUT) –//– Valley Flyer 494 (90%)
Northeast Regional 178 (SOLD OUT) –//– Valley Flyer 478 (50 %)

Wed, Nov 24th
Vermonter 56 (SOLD OUT)
Northeast Regional 94 (SOLD OUT) –//– Valley Flyer 494 (90%)
Northeast Regional 178 (90%) –//– Valley Flyer 478 (40 %)

Sat. Nov. 27th
Vermonter 54 (SOLD OUT)
Northeast Regional 88 (SOLD OUT) –//– Valley Flyer 488 (70%)

Sun. Nov. 28th
Vermonter 54 (SOLD OUT)
Northeast Regional 88 (SOLD OUT) –//– Valley Flyer 488 (60%)

Please Note
At this time there are seats available on all southbound and northbound Vermonter and Valley Flyer trains between Greenfield and New Haven. All of these trains provide scheduled connections with Metro-North’s New Haven Line. (Option 3 above)

Page last updated: November 22, 2021
Page last reviewed: October 26, 2021