Amtrak Showers
Info on shower on Amtrak.

Amtrak Showers: What You Need To Know

Learning about the small details helps you pack and set realistic expectations for planning an Amtrak adventure. Many people asked questions about Amtrak showers, so here are some answers!

The answers cover: what does Amtrak supply, do coach passengers have access to showers, and where are they on the train? So let’s take a look at the topic.

Taking a shower at 79 miles can be fun!

Kev of Travels with Kev

Showers For Coach Passengers

Sadly there are no showers for coach passengers on Amtrak trains. However, you can do a few things to freshen up for the day.

What Amtrak Offers Coach Passengers

Amtrak's long-distance coach seats
Amtrak’s long-distance coach seats. These seats include foot and leg rest, trays, and an outlet.

The bathrooms are available for you to freshen up. You can use them to change clothing. Some bathrooms are tighter than others; it depends on the car’s age or the last time Amtrak rebuilt the coach car.

Amtrak bathrooms have sinks with potable (drinkable) water for brushing teeth and shaving, hand soap, paper towels, and outlets.

How To Freshen Up In Amtrak Coach Class

Experienced travelers know a small package of wet wipes works well to help you feel fresh as you travel. They also work well for other cleaning uses.

When freshening up, be courteous to other travelers, and try not to take too long, especially during peak hours. Make sure to clean up after yourself; it doesn’t hurt to do a little more. My motto is, if I like to come into a clean bathroom, I need to leave one.

It is essential not to use the toilets as trash cans. Even flushable wipes should get tossed in the garbage and not flushed.

Each bathroom has a trash can; let the car attendant or conductor know if they become full. If you don’t want to walk into a dirty bathroom, ensure you don’t leave one.

A side note about restrooms on the train, if the ones in your car are full, you can use the bathroom in another coach car.

Showers For Sleeping Car Passengers

Amtrak sleeper
Amtrak branding on Superliner Sleeping Cars

If you reserve a room on a train, you can access showers while traveling!

Amtrak provides soap, washcloths, plus hand and bath towels. Amtrak may offer amenity kits with shampoo and other such things, but at this point, it is on select trains such as the Auto Train.

Remember that trains sway, so if you have balance issues, you may want to sit while showering or wait for a fresh air stop when the train is not moving.

Amtrak Bedroom Bathroom
Amtrak bedrooms have a small bathroom that contains a toilet and shower.

Amtrak Bedrooms

Bedrooms have showers in the suite; the toilet and shower are in the same small room.

Viewliner Accessible Rooms

Viewliner-accessible rooms have showers for you, but Superliner-accessible rooms do not.

Showers For Roomettes and Family Rooms

Passengers in roomettes, family rooms, or Superliner-accessible accommodations can access the “public: shower and its attached dressing room.

The dressing room has a place for your soiled towels and washcloths to go. If you are an early riser, you may want to bathe early because the facilities could get busy with a peak time around breakfast time.

For Superliner trains (bi-level cars), the facilities are on the lower level near the bathrooms. On Viewliners (Single-level cars), you’ll find the shower at the end of the roomette corridor on the left.

How To Operate Amtrak Showers

A control for on of Amtrak showers
Amtrak shower controls, the top button starts the water flowing, and the bottom controls temperature.

Operating the showers is not hard once you get used to them; often, it is a two-part process.

Depending on the vintage of the car, either you turn the knob and go, like at home, or the newer systems have a two-valve system; one regulates the temperature, like at home, and the other times how long the water flows, so you can’t leave it running forever.

The shower head is on a hose, and to prevent cold water from spurting at you, point the showerhead away or take it off the rod.

To get the water flowing, turn the temperature knob to the right, especially for hot showers, and press the button (sometimes it gets stuck on); if you look at the photo, the timer button is on the top. The order is not essential, but you only need to adjust the water temp if the timer button is stuck.

You can keep hitting the start button when showering to keep the water flowing; this is important to do right before washing your hair! When you finish cleaning yourself, turn the temp handle to the left till the water turns off, I do this even if the water shuts off on me.

Experienced traveler note: before starting your shower, ensure clean towels are available; I know of a traveler who made that mistake. If supplies are out, talk to the car attendant so they can fill them before your shower. If you take the last of something, be nice and let the car attendant know; the next person will thank you.

Etiquette For Amtrak Showers Etiquette For Amtrak Showers

These are not Amtrak’s rules, but they improve the shower experience for your fellow travelers.

Superliner Shower
The shower and changing room on an Amtrak Superliner
  • Don’t take too long of a shower.
    • Saving water not only helps the environment but ensures hot water for others.
    • While the train does have a few water stops, these cars can only hold so much water.
  • Placing a hand towel in front of the shower door prevents water from going all over if you go over rough tracks. It also catches the water that drips off you when you get out of the shower.
  • Put all soiled towels and washcloths in the bag (often red) or bin in the room. Leave a clean shower if you want to come into a clean shower.
  • If supplies become low, let the car attendant know to address the issues.
  • Before leaving, make sure you have everything you bring with you.

Toiletries For Amtrak Showers

Dr Bronner's Soap
Dr. Bronner’s All-One Soap is the minimal packer’s best friend. It can clean you and your clothing, plus more!

The beautiful thing about Amtrak is the TSA 3-1-1 rule does not apply. You can bring as much soap or shampoo as you want. Amtrak supplies body soap but not shampoo on most routes.

Some people suggest wearing water shoes or sandals when you shower.

A good toiletry bag will make your trip to the shower more manageable and efficient. I do not bring much as I travel, so my toiletry bag is a TSA-compatible 3-1-1 bag that looks like a pencil bag.

If you need to carry a little more, a toiletry bag with a hook or even a suction cup could help you stay organized and make it easier to stay organized and get back and forth to the shower.

Amtrak does not provide hairdryers or curling irons; if you need them, pack them. A few travelers told me there are some great small or travel-size ones you can buy.

Many experienced travelers use refillable squeeze bottles filled with Dr. Broners All-One Soap. This soap is environmentally friendly, plus the company treats its employees well and manufactures it in the USA!

On a personal note, Dr. Broner’s soap works well for washing me and my clothes and can work as shaving cream. It comes in a few fragrances; the peppermint works well for clearing your head in the morning. Lately, I have used their almond fragrance.

Wrap-Up on Amtrak Showers

I hope this information preps you for your next Amtrak adventure. Shower styles vary depending on the car’s vintage, but they all operate similarly.

Taking a shower on your next Amtrak adventure will be refreshing, and your fellow travelers will thank you for doing so. Getting clean is fun, especially when going 79 mph (in some areas even faster) down the tracks.

If you are new and looking at getting sleeper car accommodation, check out the articles on sleepers, which you can find by clicking the learn more about Amtrak travel button below.

Safe travels!


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Kev has been traveling with Amtrak since 2012, celebrating his tenth year this year. Over those years, he has been on over 700 trains covering over 200,000 miles of rail. Kev enjoys helping others achieve their travel dreams by assisting them with support and information. Kev enjoys making music as an organist.

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