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THE POLAR EXPRESS FAQs
                           "Don't forget Grandma" 

ALL 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.

Can 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 rates?
Unfortunately the 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 avoid disappointment.

Do we get off the train?
No.
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 forget Grandma".

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 appropriate footwear.

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 plan accordingly.

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 nuts.

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.


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