After spending Thanksgiving with the family and doing a little Black Friday shopping, I decided to spend Saturday night in San Diego by cashing in some of my Amtrak Guest Rewards points for a roundtrip business class ticket on the Pacific Surfliner train. Since it was Thanksgiving Weekend, I had to burn extra points for my business class ticket vs during non holiday period.
I headed out to the station Saturday afternoon about 45 minutes before my train was scheduled to arrive. At the station, I parked my car in the free parking garage before heading out to the train platform to wait for my Pacific Surfliner train. According to the Amtrak App, my train was running on time. When taking the Pacific Surfliner train, the 500 series train are usually good with staying on time vs the 700 series which tend to run late and are busier. The 700 series Pacific Surfliner trains go up to Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo from San Diego. Since the 700 series trains do not run as frequently as the 500 series Pacific Surfliner trains that originate and terminate in Los Angeles and San Diego, they tend to crowded and standing room only. If you are not traveling north of Los Angeles, stick to the 500 series train. As it got closer to the arrival time of my train, more and more people gathered on the platform or were being dropped of my family members.
Pacific Surfliner Business Class Snack Box Content
In the distance, I could see the lights from my train so I gathered up my stuff and headed to where the business class car normally stops at. I boarded the train and after confirming with the business class attendant that the Superliner Car was being used for business class passengers, I headed into the Superliner Car where I found myself a seat on the ocean view side of the train that was facing in the direction of travel. Shortly after I had made myself comfortable, one of the attendants came by with the business class snack box and also asked me what I wanted to drink. I ordered a white wine, which is included with your business class ticket on the Pacific Surfliner. The same attendant returned shortly with my white wine and I thanked her before kicking back with my snack and chardonnay.
Pacific Surfliner Passing By San Clemente Beach
The conductor came by shortly after my wine was delivered to scan my ticket and attach a seat check above my seat to indicate that it was occupied. Just outside of Dana Point, our train stopped at a siding to let another northbound Pacific Surfliner train pass before our train proceeded into the scenic section of the route between Los Angeles and San Diego. Earlier at the station, it was sunny and a bit warm but as soon as we hit the coast, the weather changed to overcast and gray. Even with the overcast weather, the beach was quite busy with people enjoying this unusually warm winter weather. On Thanksgiving Day, the temperature hit 90+ in most of Southern California with shorts and t-shirts a common sight during Black Friday shopping.
We arrived into San Diego Santa Fe Depot couple of minutes late and after thanking the business class attendant, I headed out to the front of the train station on Kettner Street and got myself an Uber to take me to my hotel for the night. A homeless man who was passing by was not happy with all of the passengers waiting for Ubers and other transportation as he was passing through so he vocally let everyone know of his displeasure as he slowly strolled by. My Uber driver and I just laughed as we pulled away from the curb and drove drove to my hotel.