I'd still recommend South Station over Back Bay. If you take the #1 bus on Massachusetts Ave, you'd have about a half mile to walk to the Back Bay station; if you take the Red Line you'll be -at- South Station. South Station is bright and relatively spacious while Back Bay is dim and cramped in comparison.
I also would go to South Station thats where the Amtrak begins and you get a good choice of seats,by the time you get to Back Bay Station your seating choice would be limited.
I am going to be staying at the Kendall Hotel - 350 Main Street, Cambridge. I believe my hotel is near the Kendall Train station. Would the South Station still be the better choice? Can I get there via public transit?
Yes, Kendall Station is on the Red Line. Take any inbound train from there four stops to South Station. Quick and easy.
I am planning on catching the Amtrak on a Wednesday around 9:30 am. How difficult will it be to take luggage on public transit at this time (rush hour?) Also, how often do the trains come (public transit) and how long would it take for me to get from Kendall Station to the South Station?
I think the red line trains come by every 10 minuutes or so. It should take 15 minutes to get to South Station. Luggage is not a problem.
During rush hour, trains come very frequently - like every few minutes. Once the train comes, you have only 4 stops to go. That should be 10-15 minutes, max.
The train will be crowded before 9, but you should be fine with your luggage. When you get to the South Station stop, there are escalators at the station, which should make it easier to deal with your luggage as well.
Also you will primarily be going in the opposite direction of most of the crowds during the morning commute so there should be more room. But don't be intimidated if it is crowded. Just say "excuse me" and then push your way on. People tend to stand right by the doors when there is plenty of room in the body of the train.
Make sure you take an INBOUND train at Kendall.
Don't bother to sit down unless it is a very empty train since you are only going a few (4) quick stops. There are elevators at South Station if you need to take them but the escalators work faster. When you get up to the top, follow the signs for South Station and/or ask a T worker. They should have someone there in a yellow(?) vest who's sole job is to help people.
You shouldn't need to be outside at all as their is an escalator that takes you right up into the heart of South Station. You'll see the big board showing all the trains as you crest the escalator.
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