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 Post subject: Amtrak to removing dining cars from 2 trains
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:56 am 

Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2015 6:21 pm
Posts: 26
I was interested to see if anyone was going to bring this up. According to Trains Magazine Amtrak is going to be removing the dining cars from the Chicago to New York Lake shore limited and the Chicago to Washington Capitol Limited. The only "meals" served on the train will be for sleeping car passengers, though the snack cars will remain. Some of the meals will be

“chilled beef tenderloin, vegan wrap, chicken Caesar salad, or turkey club sandwich,” and breakfast options including “assorted breakfast breads with butter, cream cheese and strawberry jam; Greek yogurt and sliced seasonal fresh fruit.”

So....... what's everyone's thoughts on this?

Source: http://trn.trains.com/news/news-wire/20 ... re-limited


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 Post subject: Re: Amtrak to removing dining cars from 2 trains
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2018 3:54 am 

Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2005 9:34 pm
Posts: 2146
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
The fight over train meal service goes back 30 years. Depending on how you allocate cost, the dining cars are heavily subsidized. But overall, Amtrak does an outstanding job generating revenue for its services. The dining cars are a way for anti-Amtrak politicians to show that they are cutting costs without actually canceling the trains, which would probably cost them votes in their district.

If you allocate all the costs of maintaining and hauling the dining car to the meal cost, then the meals are very expensive, especially if the dining car has limited service hours relative to the train journey, as is the case for these two relatively short duration overnight trains.

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 Post subject: Re: Amtrak to removing dining cars from 2 trains
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2018 7:28 am 

Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2011 4:29 pm
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Location: Youngstown, OH
I'm moving this over to the railfanning forum.

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 Post subject: Re: Amtrak to removing dining cars from 2 trains
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:49 am 

Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2005 1:25 pm
Posts: 5359
Delexrax wrote:
I was interested to see if anyone was going to bring this up. According to Trains Magazine Amtrak is going to be removing the dining cars from the Chicago to New York Lake shore limited and the Chicago to Washington Capitol Limited. The only "meals" served on the train will be for sleeping car passengers, though the snack cars will remain. Some of the meals will be


So....... what's everyone's thoughts on this?

Source: http://trn.trains.com/news/news-wire/20 ... re-limited


Delexrax -

Interesting. The change is reportedly going to take place on June 1st, which makes me happy that the wife and I will be riding the Capitol in May. Certainly this is not good news.

This also makes me wonder if the diners used on these two routes will be assigned to other trains, or rebuilt into another configuration.

Les


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 Post subject: Re: Amtrak to removing dining cars from 2 trains
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2018 2:33 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 01, 2004 2:46 pm
Posts: 1986
Location: Pac NW, via North Florida
I can only answer on a personal opinion, not a 'big picture' one, having ridden on one of these trains all the way-
One of the selling points of taking the Capitol Limited westbound (Metro from Penn Station to DC, CL to Chicago, Empire Builder to Seattle, then Cascades to the nearest depot to our home) in 2015 for my wife was the dining car service when we went with another couple we know. Sure, the menu was a bit limited, but it was good food and nice service.
We wouldn't be taking that trip again on cold cuts.

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 Post subject: Re: Amtrak to removing dining cars from 2 trains
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2018 4:07 pm 

Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:15 pm
Posts: 174
According to an employee memo, which has been posted publicly on another rail forum, the physical dining cars will remain on the Capitol Limited and the Lake Shore Limited and staffed with an Lead Service Attendant. They are to be used as "Sleeping Car Lounge" space where passengers from the Sleeping Car can eat their boxed meals with no table service and on a first come basis.

Since the car is being staffed by an LSA, I would assume the LSA will be selling drinks and perhaps some snacks? (a nice cheese plate, fancy chocolates, ice cream, etc. could all sell well I would think).

It should also be noted that sleeping car passengers will receive free soft drinks throughout their journey, and 1 free alcaholic beverage as well as a free amenity kit.

Will be interesting to see how this plays out.


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 Post subject: Re: Amtrak to removing dining cars from 2 trains
PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 6:46 am 

Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2005 9:34 pm
Posts: 2146
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Trains newswire ran a commentary on the new Amtrak onboard service strategy yesterday.

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 Post subject: Re: Amtrak to removing dining cars from 2 trains
PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 11:38 am 

Joined: Fri Dec 22, 2017 6:47 pm
Posts: 84
Location: Philadelphia, PA
This is reminiscent of the 1960's SP and their extra fare all-coach with automat car Sunset Limited.

The two trains affected are the East Coast to Chicago trains. This will discourage people from starting a long-distance trip much as declining quality of service on East Coast roads (NOT EL or B&O) kept passengers out of the Chicago gateway in the 1960's.


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