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Amtrak Just Made It Easier to Book Trains with Points



Amtrak will now allow travelers to pay for tickets with a combination of points and cash, making it easier to afford a trip by train.

Travelers who book with the rail company will now be presented with several different options combining cash and points to pay for their ticket, Amtrak shared with Travel + Leisure. Previously, travelers had to pay either entirely with points or entirely with cash. 

“With more redemption options and fewer points needed to redeem, it’s easier than ever for our valued Amtrak Guest Rewards customers to use their points for reward travel,” Amtrak’s  executive vice president and chief commercial officer Eliot Hamlisch said in a statement shared with T+L. “Amtrak Guest Rewards members enjoy exclusive benefits and an enhanced travel experience, and with Points & Cash, they now have a new way to redeem points earlier and more often.”

To use a combination of cash and points, customers should select the “use points” option in the search results and choose the itinerary they want to book. They will see up to four cash and points options on the payment screen.

Travelers will continue to earn both Amtrak Guest Rewards and Tier Qualifying Points on the cash portion of their ticket. 

Amtrak, which had its first-ever points sale earlier this year, rewards members of its loyalty program with two points for every dollar spent on travel, offers a 25 percent point bonus for business class travel, and a 50 percent point bonus for Acela first class travel. The program is free to sign up for. 

Travelers who receive tier status with the rail company are then eligible for bonuses like upgrades and lounge access.

Amtrak isn’t alone in recently allowing travelers to pay with a combination of cash and points. Last month, Southwest rolled out a similar option, allowing passengers to combine cash with as few as 1,000 points when booking flights.



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