POLAR EXPRESS™ FAQs
"Don't forget Grandma"
ABOARD! THE POLAR EXPRESS™ comes to life at Alberta Prairie Railway
Departing from Alberta Prairie’s Railway Station in Stettler, Alberta
Inspired by the award winning book by Chris Van Allsburg. Experience the magic
of The Polar Express. Read along with the story as the train makes a round trip
journey to the North Pole. Enjoy carolling, hot chocolate, and a cookie. And, for those who believe, a special gift for each child. Everyone is
encouraged to wear their pyjamas!
There are bathrooms at the station for use prior and post trip and our gift
store will be open on the station grounds through out your visit.
What does my “Polar Express” ticket include?
Each ticket includes a Polar Express Train Ride and each passenger is served hot
chocolate and a cookie treat by Polar Express Chefs
and everyone receives a ceramic souvenir Polar Express mug.
Santa will board the train at the North Pole, and on the return trip will be on
board and walk through each car giving out the “first gift of Christmas” – a
silver sleigh bell – to each child
12 years and under, and everyone joins in and sing Christmas carols as the train returns
to the Stettler station.
Where are we going to board?
You will be boarding at the train station in Stettler, Alberta which is located
at 4611 – 47 Avenue. We are just two blocks east of Main Street, at the base of
a burgundy grain elevator.
Is there Parking?
Parking is available at no charge. There will be attendants available to guide
you to your spot. Please inform the parking lot attendants of any members of
your party who have mobility issues or difficulty walking, and you will be
guided to a handicap spot or the closest available parking space.
Please dress for the weather.
How long is the event?
The train ride is one hour. Please come approximately 30 minutes prior to
departure for boarding. You can shop in the gift store upon arrival back
from the North Pole.
What can I expect on the Train Ride?
Each Polar Express Train Ride will last approximately one hour. Your tickets
will be forwarded to you by mail if time allows, otherwise they will be held at
the station to be picked up the day of your trip. Once on board, you will travel
to the North Pole while we read the story of The Polar Express. Polar Express
Chefs will attend the coaches as each ticketed passenger is served hot chocolate
and a cookie treat. As the train passes the North Pole, you will catch a glimpse
of Santa who will board the train for the return trip. As you head back to the
station, Santa will be on board and walk through each car to give out the “first
gift of Christmas” – the silver sleigh bell – to each child 12 years and under. We will
all join in and sing Christmas carols as we return to the station.
What is Coach seating like?
Coaches are reserved by car numbers and seat numbers. All seats hold two people.
Chefs will assist passengers to their seats.
Will I receive confirmation?
Yes. You will receive your tickets by mail within 2-3 weeks.
Where do I pick up my tickets?
Tickets will be mailed out if time allows. Tickets unable to be mailed will be
held at the train station in Stettler to be picked up on the day of your trip.
I cancel or change the date if my plans change?
Cancellations will be accepted up to your departure time and a 50% refund will
be issued. There is $10 per person administration fee to cancel tickets and
rebook your party on another date or time.
Discounts and group
nature of these special trains does not permit Alberta Prairie Railway to offer
discounts, special fares or group rates.
Do you sell official merchandise on the Polar Express Train?
The Polar Express Train Ride will feature a variety of themed merchandise. Cash,
debit, and credit cards are accepted. There will be time to shop in the gift
store upon arrival back from the North Pole.
Our gift store will be open on the station grounds through out your visit.
Will food be available at this event?
Food is not available at the actual event site – except for the hot chocolate
and cookie treat aboard the train during the ride. Passengers who wish to come
early or stay later after the ride will find a variety of restaurants in close
proximity to the station.
Do the trains depart on time?
Yes, the trains must leave on time to avoid delays to hundreds of passengers. We
suggest you arrive approximately 30 minutes prior to your departure time. Please
check your directions and drive time and allow for weather or traffic delays to
Do we get off the train?
Passengers stay on the train. Santa boards the train at the “North Pole” and
will greet passengers in each car.
How can I sit with my friends?
Coach seating is assigned by car and seat numbers. You must reserve all of your
party under one reservation to be seated together. Add-on to existing
reservation are difficult at best and most of the time impossible. "Don't
Can we wear pyjamas and bring our copy of the book?
Yes! We encourage families to dress in warm pyjamas and bring your Polar Express
book for the Conductor to sign if you wish. Be sure to dress warmly enough to
walk comfortable to and from your coach, and make sure that everyone is wearing
Restrooms and Diaper-Changing Facilities
Restrooms and diaper-changing facilities are available at the train
station for use prior and post trip. The train ride is one hour long, so please
Will my infant need a ticket?
Yes! Safety regulations require all passengers to have a ticket and be assigned a seat.
The advantage of this requirement is that parents can bring their little ones on
board in a baby carrier, place infants on a seat right beside them, and enjoy
the delights of hands-free travel.
Can we bring our baby stroller?
Strollers are not allowed aboard The Polar Express Train Ride,
due to limited space and narrow aisles aboard the train and the need for staff
to move about freely during the trip. Strollers left at the station are the
responsibility of the passenger.
Access for persons with disabilities?
We apologize, but we are unable to accommodate wheelchairs on The Polar Express
Train Ride. If you require special accommodation, please notify us when
reserving your seats.
My child has food allergies; can you accommodate special dietary requests?
Unfortunately, we cannot accommodate special requests. We will be serving hot
chocolate and a cookie. Passengers with allergies may bring their own cookies
and hot chocolate. Please communicate with the Chefs on board so that we may
serve your treats. Cookies are produced in facilities that may have handled
Will every person receive a bell?
Every child 12 years and under on the train will receive a bell from Santa. If
your party includes developmentally challenged adults, please communicate with
the Chefs on board so Santa can be alerted.
Will the ride be cancelled if there is bad weather?
No. The Polar Express will still operate. Winter wind, rain, and snow, or other
adverse conditions are possible, and the Polar Express Train Ride will operate
as scheduled regardless of weather. All seating aboard trains is indoors; no
open-air cars are included on the train. Please check weather conditions prior
to your visit and dress accordingly. Please plan sufficient travel time in case
of inclement weather. Traffic and weather conditions may double the travel time
to the event.
If I haven’t read the book or seen the movie, will I still have a good time?
Absolutely! You can read along or just listen, as
we read the storybook on our train ride to the North Pole. If you have read the
book or seen the movie, you will feel like you’ve stepped off the pages as we
recreate the story with your child as part of the cast.