Amtrak Dining

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me_little_me

Engineer
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Jul 16, 2010
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4,355
The flex breakfast was my favorite flex meal. I could at least eat Cheerios, yogurt, and a piece of fruit and feel ok about that life decision. The plastic salt filled TV dinners? No thanks!
It probably qualifies as a favorite because of our love of sugar. The only thing that is not sugar is the packaging used for the breakfast. When I last traveled, they didn't even have oatmeal w/o sugar which turns what would be a healthy product into a bad one. The Cheerios are at least somewhat low in sugar but flavored yogurt is not. The fruit has better sugars than the rest and fiber but that works only as a complement to food with proteins and good fats. I guess the omelet is somewhat healthy except for its rubbery taste.
 

nendee

Train Attendant
Joined
Feb 8, 2021
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33
Location
New Hartford, CT
So I’m on the LSL right now, just finished overnight on way to chicago (just passed Toledo). As usual, I love it! The sleep was great, the attendant awesome. I know what I was getting into with flex dining so my expectations were met fine. My biggest complaint is no WiFi. It shows me connecting to the Amtrak WiFi - but it never works at all hours. Oh well. Regardless, already planning my next overnight trip!

89352E62-5C6B-4E92-8EC8-745612AD81F0.jpeg
 

TEREB

Train Attendant
Joined
Apr 5, 2009
Messages
97
The flex breakfast was my favorite flex meal. I could at least eat Cheerios, yogurt, and a piece of fruit and feel ok about that life decision. The plastic salt filled TV dinners? No thanks!
We were not offered fruit on our June northbound Meteor trip. Is that an option now?
 

pennyk

50 year Amtrak Rider
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We were not offered fruit on our June northbound Meteor trip. Is that an option now?
Pre-covid, the Meteor offered bananas for breakfast but I believed they stopped. I assume because of Covid.
 

Devil's Advocate

It's just a scratch.
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May 24, 2010
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Siding of Excellence
Pre-covid, the Meteor offered bananas for breakfast but I believed they stopped. I assume because of Covid.
I've yet to see anything to purports to show that the pandemic negatively impacts or is transmitted by fruits and vegetables. If anything we should probably be eating more fresh perishables to improve our baseline health to help fight off infections. I wonder how money much was saved by abandoning fruit and veggies.
 

pennyk

50 year Amtrak Rider
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I've yet to see anything to purports to show that the pandemic negatively impacts or is transmitted by fruits and vegetables. If anything we should probably be eating more fresh perishables to improve our baseline health to help fight off infections. I wonder how money much was saved by abandoning fruit and veggies.
The format of the breakfast was changed. Pre-covid, it was self serve, other than the breakfast sandwich. Post covid, the LSA delivered the food. I think the change of format eliminated the bananas (which was a result of covid - thus my assumption).
 

zephyr17

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Jul 22, 2009
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Washington State
My biggest complaint is no WiFi. It shows me connecting to the Amtrak WiFi - but it never works at all hours.
Amtrak wifi has sucked on every train I've ever tried it on, Cascades, Maple Leaf, NE Regional.

Save yourself a lot of frustration and use your cellphone data plan and tether if you have another device you want to use. It is a lot faster than Amtrak wifi when you are even able to connect to the wifi.
 

Danib62

Service Attendant
Joined
May 11, 2021
Messages
128
Location
Washington, DC
I don’t understand why buses and trains all push wifi these days as some great amenity when all it is is a shared cellular signal as opposed to the one in your pocket that you have all to yourself.

I guess back when people were on plans with data caps it was a nice perk but almost everyone has unlimited plans these days.
 

crescent-zephyr

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Oct 21, 2015
Messages
3,854
In the beginning of flex, packaged fresh fruit was offered in a plastic container. Cut up pieces of fruit ala a fruit salad. Don't know if it continued after Covid started.
Yes. At the beginning of flex I could get a container of fruit from the LSA and also help myself to fresh fruit that was out by the tea.
 

Cal

Foamer
Joined
Jan 23, 2021
Messages
2,618
Location
Socal
I don’t understand why buses and trains all push wifi these days as some great amenity when all it is is a shared cellular signal as opposed to the one in your pocket that you have all to yourself.

I guess back when people were on plans with data caps it was a nice perk but almost everyone has unlimited plans these days.
If it worked it would be great as you would be able to use it all the time when data isn't reliable.
 

joelkfla

OBS Chief
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Oct 16, 2018
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794
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12 miles from Walt Disney World
I don’t understand why buses and trains all push wifi these days as some great amenity when all it is is a shared cellular signal as opposed to the one in your pocket that you have all to yourself.

I guess back when people were on plans with data caps it was a nice perk but almost everyone has unlimited plans these days.
I don't think almost everyone has unlimited data. Maybe younger folk do. I don't see the point in paying $60 or more per month for unlimited data on a major carrier, when a limited plan on a reseller (Consumer Cellular) at $25 a month meets my needs. But this has nothing to do with Amtrak Dining.
 

zephyr17

Engineer
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Jul 22, 2009
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Washington State
I don't think almost everyone has unlimited data. Maybe younger folk do. I don't see the point in paying $60 or more per month for unlimited data on a major carrier, when a limited plan on a reseller (Consumer Cellular) at $25 a month meets my needs. But this has nothing to do with Amtrak Dining.
I just turned 66 and have 2 lines of unlimited for $60/mo with T-Mobile on my senior plan.

And I use mobile data like crazy.

I don't think its a general age thing. Younger people grew up with it. I didn't grow up with it, but I sure as heck like it and use it.

Makes up a little bit for not getting the flying cars we thought we'd have by now.
 

TEREB

Train Attendant
Joined
Apr 5, 2009
Messages
97
The format of the breakfast was changed. Pre-covid, it was self serve, other than the breakfast sandwich. Post covid, the LSA delivered the food. I think the change of format eliminated the bananas (which was a result of covid - thus my assumption).
. This is from our southbound Meteor, October 2019. The fruit cup was delivered, covered, with our breakfast.
I don’t see the difference between a covered salad delivered with our June 2021 northbound Meteor and a covered cup of fruit.
Oh yes I do. The salad was covered in foil whereas the fruit had a fitted lid.
I think they could have continued it after COVID. But I may be missing something. $$
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Dustyroad

Service Attendant
Joined
Jul 2, 2020
Messages
154
I haven't ridden on Amtrak for a couple years. Do we still have to be in our bedroom to make our dinner time reservation? I know it used to be you could not be in the obsersvation car when they came around to take our time. Thanks for any help. We will be on the Southwest Chief.
 

crescent-zephyr

Engineer
Joined
Oct 21, 2015
Messages
3,854
I haven't ridden on Amtrak for a couple years. Do we still have to be in our bedroom to make our dinner time reservation? I know it used to be you could not be in the obsersvation car when they came around to take our time. Thanks for any help. We will be on the Southwest Chief.
I can’t speak from current experience but that was never an Amtrak rule, I would often make dining car reservations when in the lounge. That was just an LSA making up a rule.
 

PVD

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Jul 8, 2015
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5,823
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NYC/Queens
They will usually tell you to stay in your room and give them a chance to take your resv, otherwise there was no guaranatee they would get to you. I always got sleepers first, then we will hit the lounge, but back then coach passengers could eat in the diner, and if times were open they could be filled by coach passengers if you didn;t speak up. I've never had anyone say they wouldn't take one outside of the sleeper, but I have had them say it could affect your time. That makes much more sense.
 
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Joined
Aug 12, 2021
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Location
Seattle, WA
I haven't ridden on Amtrak for a couple years. Do we still have to be in our bedroom to make our dinner time reservation? I know it used to be you could not be in the obsersvation car when they came around to take our time. Thanks for any help. We will be on the Southwest Chief.
Last week the dining car steward (or whatever they are called now) on the Coast Starlight #11 went through the sleeping cars first and then took meal reservations in the lounge car. He first announced that only sleeping car passengers were eligible to eat in the dining car.
 

Sauve850

OBS Chief
Joined
Jan 9, 2014
Messages
617
Location
West Palm Beach, Florida
That's been my experience with Amtrak Wifi on the Surfliner, Acela, NER, and Cardinal
I dont need or have a lot of interest in Wifi on a train but I did decide to test it off and on during my eastbound Cardinal trip recently. It worked fairly well on this particular trip in my roomette and dining car during my dinner and also at breakfast.
 
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lordsigma

Conductor
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Joined
Sep 15, 2017
Messages
1,323
I haven't ridden on Amtrak for a couple years. Do we still have to be in our bedroom to make our dinner time reservation? I know it used to be you could not be in the obsersvation car when they came around to take our time. Thanks for any help. We will be on the Southwest Chief.
When I was on the Chief in June the LSA - Diner said to come see him in the diner if we weren’t in our room before he started going around - which I did to get my reservation.
 
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