Pacific Surfliner Adds Roundtrip

This isn’t an Amtrak blog, I swear!

I don’t post much about the Pacific Surfliner train, which runs from San Luis Obispo to San Diego via Los Angeles. In fact, I’ve never been on it! But I did come across the news that they’ve just added a new round-trip to fill an odd gap in their schedule. The new train will start October 14.

Additional Trip Options: We’ve added an extra trip in each direction between Los Angeles and San Diego. New southbound Train 578 will depart Los Angeles at 1:15 p.m., arriving in San Diego at 4:12 p.m. Northbound Train 591 will be renumbered as Train 593, but will keep a similar departure time from San Diego, at 6:40 p.m. New Train 591 will depart San Diego at 5:25 p.m., and arrive in Los Angeles at 8:34 p.m. Both trains fill gaps in the afternoon schedule, providing more travel options.

This brings the number of trains between Los Angeles and San Diego to 13 every day of the week. The new service has the greatest impact in the northbound direction.

Currently, afternoon trains leave San Diego at 2:50pm, 3:58pm, 6:43pm, and 8:57pm.

The gap between 3:58pm and 6:43pm is really odd. I would guess business folks would want something around 5pm.

Well, here’s the new schedule (which looks super sleek by the way). The train highlighted in red has been slotted in to fill the gap:

Southbound, the new train slides in between a 12:33pm and 2:58pm departure, which doesn’t seem like a gap that needed filling as much. The new train is set for 1:15pm.

One reason for this choice may be that the 12:33pm train actually starts in San Luis Obispo at 6:55am, which means it is prone to delays. The new train may prove to be a preferred option due to better reliability, since it only runs from LA to San Diego.

The Surfliner should see additional trips added as the new trains are delivered over the next few years. Wouldn’t it great to have them run at least hourly?

5 Replies to “Pacific Surfliner Adds Roundtrip”

  1. This won’t affect me at all. I too have never been on that train. Sounds cool though. Did you hear about Gavin trying to take away millions for hwy99 projects and give it to HSR? Smh. Fresno and the CV always gets shit on. But what’s up with Bako and all their bay construction? What makes them so special?

    1. From what I saw the executive order has nothing to do with HSR. More about local rail projects, which makes sense.

      1. If only more local projects existed. Has anyone ever thought of commuter rail from Kerman/Firebaugh/Mendota or Dinuba/Sanger/Reedley ? I’ve been trying to think of other local rail projects to have besides HSR.

        Besides those, the only other thing I can think of is moving Madera’s Amtrak station to it’s Downtown. Who put that station all the way in Madera Acres anyway?

        1. The only central valley rail project I am aware of is the study to provide rail between Hanford and Visalia.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cross_Valley_Corridor

          The north end of the valley has a lot of rail stuff going on. I posted about them here:
          https://stopandmove.com/2018/08/major-improvements-in-rail-service-coming-to-northern-central-valley.html/

          They are planning on moving to Madera station again. Not downtown, because Amtrak doesn’t use those tracks, but somewhere slightly better.

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