Viewliner trains: Layout, routes and other things to know

Viewliner Sleeper Car Lake Shore Limited

Viewliner is a specific type of rail car used on some Amtrak routes. There are only Viewliner sleeping, dining and baggage cars, which are single level and most identifiable by the “double-decker” windows (see photo above). All overnight trains that stop in New York City use Viewliners in order to fit in the tunnels surrounding Manhattan.

One important thing to note is that there are currently two types of Viewliner sleeper cars in service: Viewliner I and Viewliner II (see sleeper car section below to learn about the differences). There are also Superliner, Surfliner and Acela trains that use different rail cars.


Five Amtrak routes use Viewliner rail cars:

Coach Car Layout

Viewliner trains use Amfleet rail cars for coach class. There is a center aisle with two seats together on each side of the aisle. Restrooms are in all coach cars at one end, and there are overhead luggage racks where you can store your bags.

Cafe Car Layout

The cafe car is available to all passengers and has a snack bar, restroom and tables that seat four people.

Dining Car Layout

Dining cars are available to sleeper car passengers only (as of January 2021). They are located near the sleeper cars, with a kitchen at one end and tables at the other. There is a small hallway next to the kitchen so you can walk to other areas of the train.

Sleeper Car Layout

The Viewliner sleeper cars have roomettes and bedrooms with two rows of windows. To increase privacy, the sleeper cars are usually at the front or back of the train and the coach cars are positioned at the other end. This ensures that there is no need for coach passengers to walk through the sleeper car (coach passengers are not allowed in this area of the train).

Viewliner I Sleeper Car Layout

  • A shared shower room is at one end of the rail car.
  • At the other end are two bedrooms and one accessible bedroom.
  • In the middle of the rail car are 12 roomettes that have sinks and toilets.
  • Roomettes 11 and 12 are closest to the shower and the attendant’s room.

Note: All bedrooms and roomettes have private toilets and sinks, plus bedrooms have private showers.

Viewliner II Sleeper Car Layout

The key difference between the two Viewliner models is that the Viewliner II roomettes do not have sinks or toilets. Otherwise, the layout is similar:

  • At one end of the rail car there are two shared restrooms.
  • At the other end of the rail car you’ll find two bedrooms and one accessible bedroom, all with private restrooms.
  • In the middle of the rail car are 11 roomettes.

Tip: If you book your sleeper car tickets over the phone (1-800-872-7245), you can request a specific bedroom or roomette.

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