30th Street Station's Shoe Shine Guy

Adrianne Hill of Philadelphia receives her order at Beiler's Bakery. (Mike Levin / Staff Photographer)

Inquirer staff writer Brittany Talarico reports from 30th Street Station at 8:30 a.m.

Though it’s still early in the day, employees at 30th Street Station are noticing fewer travelers.

At 8 a.m., Jose Cordeiro, the president and CEO of Phoenix Shoe Shine, was worked on a pair of boots worn by a Haverford College student on her way Boston.

Cordeiro said he’s expecting a slow day.

“So far only seven customers,” Cordeiro said. “By the end of the day, maybe I’ll reach 35. On a good day I have 55.”

He charges $6 for a spit shine, $7 for half boots. Amtrak employees pay a discounted $5.

Cordeiro said holiday travelers are typically in a hurry and dressed casually in shoes that don’t shine up.

His customer, Rachel VanTosh, 21, was waiting for the first of two trains she plans to take today.

After taking Amtrak to Penn Station in New York City, she’ll meet up with family for another leg of the journey to Boston.

“I’m hitting all the big cities today!” said VanTosh. “I hope this travel day doesn’t take more than 7 hours.”

Tom Lehman, 57, a redcap for Amtrak, said rail passengers this year will find less crowded train platforms.

“There doesn’t seem to be as many travelers,” Lehman said. “In years past, it was hard to find a spot on the platform for their luggage. But this year it hasn’t been too bad at all.” 

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