Siemens Charger locomotive
A Pacific Surfliner powered by a new Siemens Charger locomotive travels through north San Diego Coujnty. Courtesy Amtrak

Amtrak announced Thursday it will add a 13th daily Pacific Surfliner train in each direction to fill a gap in its afternoon schedule.

The schedule increase, effective Monday, Oct. 14, features a new southbound Train 578 departing Los Angeles at 1:15 p.m. and arriving in San Diego at 4:12 p.m. and a new Train 591 departing San Diego at 5:25 p.m. and arriving in Los Angeles at 8:34 p.m.

“Each of the new trains will fill a nearly three-hour gap in our existing schedule, providing expanded possibilities for business and leisure travel between Los Angeles and San Diego,” said Al Murray, chairman of the Los Angeles-San Diego-San Luis Obispo Rail Corridor Agency, which oversees the Pacific Surfliner service.

“We appreciate the support of the state of California, Amtrak, BNSF Railway, and our local member agencies in launching these additional trains, which mark the first expansion of Pacific Surfliner service in the past three years,” said Murray

As part of the new schedule, minor changes are also being made to arrival and departure times of other Pacific Surfliner trains to improve reliability and coordination with other railroad traffic.

With almost 3 million riders in 2018, the Pacific Surfliner is the busiest state-supported intercity passenger rail route in the United States.

All Pacific Surfliner trains feature reclining seats with power outlets, WiFi, bike racks, and an onboard Market Café that offers fresh food, snacks and beverages, including California wines, cocktails and local craft beer.

Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.