You are currently viewing November Trip to Chill With Abby

November Trip to Chill With Abby

Trains, planes, and automobiles, oh yeah, and a bus too!

(* means it is an affiliate link. See disclosure at the bottom of the page for more details).

The next adventure I am undertaking brings me back to the historic city of Charleston, SC. This time, I will hang out with Abby, my sister’s dog, while they visit Disney. (Side note, I am the only one in my family that has never been to Disney.) The transportation for this trip involves four trains, a connecting bus, and a plane.

To Charleston:

I will ride Amtrak’s Hiawatha train to Chicago, followed by the Cardinal, a connecting bus, and lastly, the Silver Meteor.

The Cardinal runs three times a week, each direction, from Chicago to New York. The Cardinal offers many unforgettable views of the Southeasts, such as the Blue Ridge and Allegheny Mountains, the Shenandoah Valley, and the wild white-water rivers of West Virginia and vistas that can only see by train.

The Silver Meteor runs daily from New York to Miami along the eastern seaboard. I don’t see much on this train because I get on the train when it is dark and arrive in Charleston early in the morning, but check the link if you are interested in this train.

I have reserved a Viewliner Roomette on the Cardinal. A roomette includes meals (but not alcohol), private space on the train, uses of a shower, access to juice and coffee station, and use of the lounge in Chicago Union Station. The Cardinal takes me from Chicago to Charlottesville, VA; when I arrive there, a bus transports me, and the other passengers, to Richmond, VA. When I come to Richmond, VA, I have a layover before catching the Silver Meteor to Charleston, SC. I have a coach class reservation on the Silver Meteor because the trip is about 7 hours. A roomette is my first choice, but unless someone donates to the cause. $170 extra is hard to justify for that short of the trip. When I arrive in Charleston, my sister and Abby will pick me up.

Return Home:

I am flying back; I usually fly back with Delta to Midway (Chicago) or Milwaukee with a layover in Atlanta. On this trip, I am flying Southwest with a direct flight to Midway. After my arrival into Midway, I take the Orange Line to the Loop, walk to Chicago Union Station (two blocks away), and then take the Hiawatha home.

Equipment needed for a two-week trip:

  • I will bring my Tortuga Travel Backpack*, but I could use my Travelpro Bold 2.0 22”* suitcase. I would not take anything more substantial because I would have to check a bag when I fly.
  • Packing cubes* to keep organized.
  • Water bottle and snacks
  • Electronics (iPad and computer for me )
  • 4-5 days’ worth of clothing (plan on doing laundry)
  • Chargers and wires
  • Journal and entertainment
  • Minimum Toiletries
  • Small day bag


Kev has traveled over 125,000 miles on over 660 trains all around the United States aboard Amtrak. When he is not on the move, Kev enjoys making music as an organist.