Amtrak to Close Winona Ticket Office

The westbound Empire Builder during its stop in Winona, Minnesota, in May 2014.

The westbound Empire Builder during its stop in Winona, Minnesota, in May 2014.

Amtrak will close its ticket office at the station in Winona, Minnesota, at the end of August.

Winona Mayor Mark Peterson said Amtrak notified the city recently about the closing.

“It’s not what we wanted to hear,” he said.

The station will remain open to serve the daily Empire Builder and Amtrak has arranged for someone to open and close the station at train times as well as keep it clean.

But travelers will need to call Amtrak’s national reservations number or check its website for train and travel information.

Amtrak said the closing is part of a company-wide effort to close ticket offices that have seen a decline in ticket sales.

Ticket offices at Amtrak stations in St. Paul, Minnesota, and La Crosse, Wisconsin will remain open.

Winona station is the second-busiest in Minnesota, with 20,318 boardings and alightings in 2014.

The busiest station is St. Paul, which posted 94,077 boarding and alightings. La Crosse had 24,036 during the same period.

Amtrak said sales of tickets at its ticket offices has declined in recent years as many passengers turn to online ticket purchasing and have the ability to check arrival and departure times with automated phone apps.

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