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Safe to arrive on Amtrak so late at night?

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Chicago, Illinois
posts: 1
reviews: 4
Safe to arrive on Amtrak so late at night?

I'm coming to Indianapolis for a conference in a couple of weeks from Chicago and I would prefer not to drive or fly. The Amtrak train arrives (assuming it's on time) at 11:50pm. My hotel is near the convention center and I am unsure about whether it would be safe for me to walk to my hotel, probably alone, at that hour from the station, or what the odds are of actually finding a cab at that hour? It's been a few years since I've visited Indy and my sense back then was that it wasn't a good idea to walk around alone downtown late at night. Anybody have any advice? Thanks.

Bloomington, Indiana
Destination Expert
for Bloomington
posts: 5,948
reviews: 20
1. Re: Safe to arrive on Amtrak so late at night?

First, welcome to the TA forums!

Second, without knowing your personal "safety bubble" it's kind of hard to say how you'll feel. Also, the specific hotel you're going to will have some influence as it could be as close a a block or two (Crowne Plaza, Omni), or as far as a mile (or more). I hope you can understand how one might consider a walk of a couple of blocks safe, but a mile walk less so.

Also, the day of the week would likely influence on my comments. On a Friday or Saturday night it's all but certain there will be a fairly good number of people out & about, but if you're talking about a Sunday night when there will very likely be a lot fewer people . . . .

Thus, I'll hold off of any sort of specific no don't worry at all or I wouldn't suggest doing it. I will, however, make a few (additional) general comments:

1. Generally speaking downtown Indy is safe <insert standard keep you big city wits about you disclaimer here>. Given you're from Chicago I figure you've got your big city wits in order.

2. I would expect there to be at least a few other people getting off the train with you. The size of this "crowd" might influence my actions on the spur of the moment. If a huge group of people all get off and start walking in the direction you're going to go . . . I'd be more likely to walk. (The whole safety in numbers.) On the other hand, if you're the only one that got off the train . . . .

3. I might expect there to be cabs greeting the train, but that's just a guess on my part. I can say that many of the downtown hotels have cab lines, so even if you decide you don't want to walk all the way to your (distant) hotel, you might walk to one of the close ones and get a cab there (if there aren't cabs at the station and/or you don't want to wait for one from a phone call).

4. On the topic of cabs, I'm 99% certain there is now a flat fee fare for travel within the mile downtown square. Don't remember the details, but I remember seeing something about it and confirming it at some point in the past.

5. Lastly, you should be aware of that the train station is *south* of the RR tracks. I mention this because these are a *wide* set of tracks that form a tunnel for auto/pedestrian traffic and a psychological (if not physical) barrier between the things south of the tracks and the rest of downtown. I would think if you were to feel unsafe on any of your walk, it would likely be this portion. (But, it would also be the portion where you'd most likely get a "crowd effect" from those also getting off the train.) You can use Google streetview to see exactly what I'm talking about.

Bottom Line: Subject to some "devil in the details" aspects that I touched on initially, my general feeling is that you're fine to walk. Particularly if you're talking about one of the hotels that is close to the station. On the other hand, if you're talking about one of the farther ones, I'd probably suggest getting a cab (as much from a practical standpoint as from a safety standpoint).

If you add additional information (such as your hotel), I might be able to weigh in with some additional comments.

Hope this helps,

hlo

2. Re: Safe to arrive on Amtrak so late at night?

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