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Saint Louis/Lambert International Airport (STL) is the closest major airport to Carbondale (2 1/2 hours by automobile) and the BEST choice to set as your final destination.

We cannot pick students up from Saint Louis. Therefore, you must follow the instructions below to make your own travel arrangements to the Carbondale area.

You can get from St. Louis to Carbondale by:

WE WILL BEGIN PICK UPS NO EARLIER THAN THE FRIDAY BEFORE ORIENTATION AND END PICK UPS ON THE FRIDAY OF ORIENTATION WEEK.  You should coordinate your travel itinerary with us by filling out this form especially if you arrive at an odd hour like the middle of the night.

We can pick students up from:

  • Marion airport (MWA)
  • Amtrak train station
  • Local hotels - we can pick you up at your temporary hotel and bring you to campus for orientation

Traveling from Chicago

(Not recommended for first time travelers. If your final stop is Chicago, you should add St. Louis as a final stop to your journey and then take the BART shuttle to Carbondale)

If your final destination is Chicago you can travel to Carbondale by using the Amtrak train service located at the Chicago Union Station or by flying to Saint Louis.

Below are detailed instructions from the CHICAGO O'HARE AIRPORT to the Union Station.

  1. Go to the CTA station in O’Hare.
  2. Ride for about 1 hour until you reach CLINTON. (Previous 3 stops, in order, are: Monroe-Blue, Jackson-Clue, LaSalle.)
  3. When exiting Clinton-Blue, look for Amtrak signs posted near the exits. The two exits both lead north.
  5. Cross VAN BUREN ST.
  6. Cross JACKSON BLVD.
  7. Immediately after crossing Jackson St., you’ll see a set of heavy wooden door to your right.
  8. Enter through the door, go down the ramp, and turn left into the large main seating area.
  9. At the middle of the main seating area on the right side is a ramp going down to the ticketing area.
  10. If you have your confirmation email, find a QuickTicket machine and scan your confirmation sheet’s barcode to print your ticket.
  11. If you don’t have your confirmation email, get in a line at the ticketing booth.
  12. After getting your tickets, go through the entrance that dead-ends with a wall hiding bathrooms. Look at your ticket for the gate number and find your gate.
  13. Ask any Amtrak official for help locating your train!

O'hare to Amtrak

NOTE: You must arrive at least 20 minutes before your train is scheduled to leave. The train stops boarding 15 minutes prior to departure.