Skip to content

South Florida high-speed rail Brightline to resume service in November, with upgrades

Aug. 11, 2021
4 min read
Brightline passenger train.
South Florida high-speed rail Brightline to resume service in November, with upgrades
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Florida's Brightline high-speed train will restart operations from Miami to Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach in November, more than a year after the pandemic forced it to shut down.

Sign up for the free daily TPG newsletter for more travel tips

The company announced its comeback will feature several upgrades to its service, including a new digital platform to make its app and website more user-friendly. The company is also improving accessibility to train stations by providing door-to-door service with its own fleet of vehicles. This includes luxury cars, shared-ride shuttles and golf carts as well as micro-mobility options (think electric bikes and electric scooters). Brightline officials say these expanding offerings are about eliminating the gaps "created by the first and last miles," as well as reducing the company's impact on the environment.

The All Aboard Florida Brightline express inter-city train is displayed during a media tour in West Palm Beach, Florida, U.S., on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017. (Photograph by Scott McIntyre/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Related: Brightline to Los Angeles to Las Vegas

In a statement on its website, Brightline President Patrick Goddard said, “Over the last few months, we’ve made upgrades to our guest experience and made significant strides in construction. Our goal remains the same, to take cars off the road while offering the most convenient way to travel in South Florida and a guest-first experience.”

According to the Miami Herald, ticket prices to ride Brightline are expected to remain about the same as they were before the pandemic. Before service shut down, a one-way pass from Miami to Fort Lauderdale cost $15.

The company says an exact date for the resumption of service will be announced in the next few weeks. The Federal Railroad Administration must still grant certification to Brightline’s new positive train control safety system before service can resume.

When the trains are rolling again, passengers can expect enhanced safety measures.

Related: Why trains are great for travelers who want to reduce their carbon footprint

Sign up for our daily newsletter

Masks will be required aboard trains and in stations at all times, for both passengers and Brightline workers. Employees will also be required to be fully vaccinated. The ride experience will feature prepackaged food offerings, touchless bathroom toilets and sinks, cashless payment options and electronic tickets. The private four-person tables will have plexiglass dividers to provide increased distancing.

Brightline also pointed out that its trains will have a needlepoint bipolar ionization ozone-free system to neutralize pathogens, viruses and bacteria.

Related: All aboard trains to Orlando

The company, which laid off most of its workforce last year, says it intends to hire back around 200 employees as it resumes service. Salaries for those jobs will begin at $18 per hour plus benefits. Some of those workers will be assigned to work at two key stations, Aventura and Boca Raton, that are either under construction or close to breaking ground.

Related: Brightline and Disney sign contract for new train station link to Orlando airport and Miami

Perhaps the most important part of Brightline's expansion plans is its Orlando station at Orlando International Airport (MCO). Construction there is past the halfway point and is on schedule to be finished by the end of 2022. Once that station is completed, it will link Central Florida to South Florida.

Brightline sees Orlando as a lucrative opportunity due to the millions who visit all the area attractions annually. The company's goal is to offer families the ability to skip driving to Disney World or Universal Orlando and just hop on the train. It also hopes to prove an appealing option for overseas visitors who would prefer not to rent a car while visiting the theme park capital of the world.

Featured image by Universal Images Group via Getty Images
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Top offers from our partners

How we chose these cards

Our points-obsessed staff uses a plethora of credit cards on a daily basis. If anyone on our team wouldn’t recommend it to a friend or a family member, we wouldn’t recommend it on The Points Guy either. Our opinions are our own, and have not been reviewed, approved, or endorsed by our advertising partners.
See all best card offers

TPG featured card

Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards

2 - 10X points
10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

Intro offer

75,000 bonus miles
Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

Annual Fee

$395

Recommended Credit

740-850
Excellent
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023
Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

    75,000 bonus miles
  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
    Excellent

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023