Adirondack Dome Car 2019

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philabos

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But back to your dining car service... what you described sounds a whole lot like outsourcing the dining car operation. There's no way you can charge passengers what it would actually cost to prepare the meals on a long distance train. The math won't add up.
There is a difference between the math not adding up and not liking the answer.
GWR in the UK offers dining service on some scheduled trains between London and the west of England.
The full streak dinner with appetizer and desert will cost you about $60. They get rave reviews on Trip Advisor.
How many meals like that do you think Amtrak could sell?

https://www.gwr.com/~/media/gwr/pdfs/menus/pullman-lunch-and-dinner-menus.pdf?la=en
 

crescent-zephyr

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There is a difference between the math not adding up and not liking the answer.
GWR in the UK offers dining service on some scheduled trains between London and the west of England.
The full streak dinner with appetizer and desert will cost you about $60. They get rave reviews on Trip Advisor.
How many meals like that do you think Amtrak could sell?

https://www.gwr.com/~/media/gwr/pdfs/menus/pullman-lunch-and-dinner-menus.pdf?la=en
??? I’m confused as to the point you are trying to make. That’s a regional service that seats like 16 people for 1 sitting per trip.

Also... like any restaurant no one is forcing you to pay $60, you can order the vegetarian entree for $24 US compared to the $16.50 for Amtrak’s. Likewise the steak is $38 US Conpared to Amtrak’s $25.
 

jis

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Lots of domestic air travelers choose to pay quite a bit for First Class when they are just trying to get from Point A to Point B. Even on super short flights. While a good portion of that is paying to be comfortable vs. the tiny airline seats part of that is for the extra services as well. I'm not sure how many Amtrak passengers would want to pay more for Business Class / Sleepers if they got better service and fancier meals but it's certainly a question to ponder.

I agree with Seaboard.. the lines like the Palmetto are really a better place to test the waters than the LD trains.
Well, a very significant proportion of domestic First Class in air are comp upgrades. I am one of those who spends most of my time up front, sometimes paid and more often comped. Yeah getting food is nice, but it is not a major consideration in my thinking even in that case, even less so on a 2-3 hour flight. When you get to six hours the food and service gets better but so does the fare get higher. Again, I am not sure I'd pay that much extra for the food.

I have nothing against having Dining Car service. Indeed it would be nice to have the option. I was merely answering a specific question that jiml asked purely from my perspective, and making no claims of universality, never have, for my perspective.
 

crescent-zephyr

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As a fairly new airline traveler, I don’t have any status, but shop around for cheaper first class deals. Flying coach isn’t any fun unless I get a crazy good deal on Southwest! Ha.

Am I paying for the fancy glassware and garnish in my drink? No I’m paying for the comfortable seat. But the fancy glass sure does help me feel good about paying the extra price!
 

jiml

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The choice of $100 was arbitrary - just a starting point for the discussion, but a lot of valid points have been made. I thought of the Silver Star as a test since dining has already effectively been "unbundled" and a lot of passengers are at least going from somewhere in the northeast to somewhere in Florida - i.e. longer haul. Comparative fares between it and the Meteor have been posted elsewhere, and somewhere in the $100 range to get real food in a private diner might work better for those paying for sleeping cars already, as opposed to an all-coach train like the Palmetto - possibly with lower expectations.

I have to acknowledge jis' comment about airlines. If you have lifetime status with a major airline, you will seldom travel in the back. It does take years of "playing the game" for business and personal travel. Even if a comp upgrade isn't forthcoming, there are ways to dig out a low business/first fare with a little planning or flexibility. I'm retired, so both are part of my arsenal. If I have to fly economy, I either take the train, drive or don't go.
 

chakk

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If they wanted to run a dome car on a Superliner, couldn't they put it ahead of the transition sleeper?
Yes, but that would mean the public traipsing thru the crew-only section of the transition dorm car. The Amtrak crews would probably protest.....
 

jiml

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It's unfortunate that the Superliner order didn't include any transition coaches, unlike the Santa Fe hi-levels.
 

railiner

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It's unfortunate that the Superliner order didn't include any transition coaches, unlike the Santa Fe hi-levels.
Yes...that is a good thought. In retrospect now, especially with the reduced OBS crew (diner), it seems like that would have been the better design choice. The few crew could have been accommodated in regular sleepers, or an added sleeper to accommodate them plus additional revenue passengers. Only thing missing would be the crew office and lounge. Perhaps they could have made the lower level serve that purpose...
A transition coach would allow much more consist flexibility, to combine bilevel and single level equipment, where advantageous...
 

PVD

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Carolinian might be trickier since it gets NCDOT money, I'd guess they would have to be part of the planning process
 

PerRock

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Yes, but that would mean the public traipsing thru the crew-only section of the transition dorm car. The Amtrak crews would probably protest.....
Actually getting to the single-level connector doesn't pass thru the lower-level (where the crew-only area is) at all. Some crews may block off some of the upper-level roomettes, but they're not really a set "crew-only" area. You can see the layout of the car here: http://www.craigmashburn.com/images/amtrak-diagram-superliner-transitionsleeper.jpg (I need to re-upload my drawings one of these days...)
 

crescent-zephyr

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Putting a dome ahead of superliners for the public would be a bit silly... the sightseer lounge car is a great car that Amtrak doesn’t get enough credit for. That car didn’t exist before Amtrak and is much better for viewing than the Santa Fe high level lounges.

Naturally... there’s nothing quite like a dome... but the ssl is pretty good!
 

jiml

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Loosely on the subject of Amtrak leasing PV's for dome or dining, does anyone else recall the short-lived experiment with leased PV lounges for First Class on single-level Eastern trains? I'm guessing late 80's - early 90's? IIRC it was an upgrade option, which may have included meals. I don't remember for sure. It preceded the PPC era by several years and was a fairly big deal at the time - mostly for railfans.
 

Seaboard92

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Loosely on the subject of Amtrak leasing PV's for dome or dining, does anyone else recall the short-lived experiment with leased PV lounges for First Class on single-level Eastern trains? I'm guessing late 80's - early 90's? IIRC it was an upgrade option, which may have included meals. I don't remember for sure. It preceded the PPC era by several years and was a fairly big deal at the time - mostly for railfans.
Yes it was on the Pennsylvanian and used the JP Henderson. Itself an interesting little car.
 

PRR 60

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jis

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Yes...that is a good thought. In retrospect now, especially with the reduced OBS crew (diner), it seems like that would have been the better design choice. The few crew could have been accommodated in regular sleepers, or an added sleeper to accommodate them plus additional revenue passengers. Only thing missing would be the crew office and lounge. Perhaps they could have made the lower level serve that purpose...
A transition coach would allow much more consist flexibility, to combine bilevel and single level equipment, where advantageous...
They could have followed Santa Fe's example and built both Transition and Bag Dorms, but alas the Viewliner Bag Dorms were way in the future then, and there were copious number of serviceable baggage cars floating around then.
 
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