Business Class (Long Distance Superliners)

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rms492

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Mar 22, 2009
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Hello, is the eventual plan to offer business class on all the Long Distance trains?

I would love it if the Southwest Chief offered it.
 

Tennessee Traveler

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Maybe or maybe not. Train stations for the CZ are further apart and not as plentiful as the Coast Starlight.
 

Palmetto

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I'm having a hard time making a correlation between distance between stations and the availability of business class on long distance trains. Could you please explain TT?
 
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neroden

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Feb 23, 2014
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Ah, the idea is that business class (vs. sleepers) appeals more to travellers going shorter distances.

The SWC could certainly use it from Chicago to Kansas City. I think pretty nearly all of the Eastern trains could use it.
 

Maglev

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I think it's a good idea, but I think it should involve an investment that is probably not forthcoming. The idea of just having a separate coach that is called "Business Class" is maybe okay if it would be guaranteed that every passenger gets two seats, but ideally business class involves 2-1 deluxe seating. Maybe some future order of long-distance equipment will include business class.
 

FrensicPic

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I think it's a good idea, but I think it should involve an investment that is probably not forthcoming. The idea of just having a separate coach that is called "Business Class" is maybe okay if it would be guaranteed that every passenger gets two seats, but ideally business class involves 2-1 deluxe seating. Maybe some future order of long-distance equipment will include business class.
No one is guaranteed two seats...Business Class or otherwise! Only (no guarantee) if the seat next to you happens to be vacant which could happen in coach or Business Class.
 

KmH

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No one is guaranteed two seats...Business Class or otherwise!
When I book a sleeper berth for just me, I'm guaranteed 2, or more, seats.

If I were to book a Bedroom I would have 4 seats - 3 of them essentially a 3 seat couch.

Indeed, with a Roomette I get to have 2 seats and a separate bed, the upper bunk.

When I have a roomette I sleep in the upper bunk and have the TA-SC leave the 'downstairs' in the day configuration.
 
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FrensicPic

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No one is guaranteed two seats...Business Class or otherwise!
When I book a sleeper berth for just me, I'm guaranteed 2, or more, seats.

If I were to book a Bedroom I would have 4 seats - 3 of them essentially a 3 seat couch.

Indeed, with a Roomette I get to have 2 seats and a separate bed, the upper bunk.

When I have a roomette I sleep in the upper bunk and have the TA-SC leave the 'downstairs' in the day configuration.
Correct, but not Business Class or Coach
 

Manny T

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Jun 7, 2015
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I travel sleeper (LD) or coach (short distances). I once sprang for Business for a short trip. Nice leather seats. Then a gentleman sat down in the last row and took out his cell phone. In a booming voice he carried on business conversations (it was business class after all!) for the entire duration of the trip. Everyone could hear him, no one could avoid him. He was the type of fellow who said "three large" instead of $3,000. Only time I ever heard that except for movies and TV.

What every Amtrak train needs is a quiet car.
 

PVD

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On a Viewliner, I too will sometimes sleep "up top" and leave the lower in day, but using it as a shelf is also very tempting. On a Superliner, using the lowers for seating with the top bunk down is tough, unless you are either fairly short, or don't mind smacking your head whenever you get up.
 

OlympianHiawatha

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I travel sleeper (LD) or coach (short distances). I once sprang for Business for a short trip. Nice leather seats. Then a gentleman sat down in the last row and took out his cell phone. In a booming voice he carried on business conversations (it was business class after all!) for the entire duration of the trip. Everyone could hear him, no one could avoid him. He was the type of fellow who said "three large" instead of $3,000. Only time I ever heard that except for movies and TV.

What every Amtrak train needs is a quiet car.
The same thing happened to me going from Chicago to STl, only this time the "businessman" was making one call right after the other, many to his secretary who he proceeded to cuss out very loudly. After about 30 minutes, the Conductor kindly informed him if he kept it up, the next station would be his destination; the phone stayed pocketed from there on in :)
 

Cho Cho Charlie

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..., but ideally business class involves 2-1 deluxe seating.
I'll admit, the few times I have taken BC was because of the 2-1 recliner seating. However, those single level cars are few and far between. Plus, I don't think we'll ever see new cars like those.

Without those special seats, to me, BC is really nothing more than a "free" small soda, and maybe priority boarding.
 

me_little_me

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..., but ideally business class involves 2-1 deluxe seating.
I'll admit, the few times I have taken BC was because of the 2-1 recliner seating. However, those single level cars are few and far between. Plus, I don't think we'll ever see new cars like those.

Without those special seats, to me, BC is really nothing more than a "free" small soda, and maybe priority boarding.
And a clean restroom!
 

FrensicPic

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Business Class on the Coast Starlight is 2+2 seating. I sat on the lower level last summer..the seats were leather(?).

You do get a voucher for $6 off in the diner or lounge car; two bottles of water; wifi and you can do the wine tasting (not free) in the PPC. The Metropolitan Lounge is also available for BC travelers.
 
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Dec 22, 2013
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I'm debating bumping my coach ticket up to business class on the Crescent (DC to ATL) for next week. I know its not true business class (big leather seats), but I really really want a higher chance of not having anyone sit next to me or get some family with a screaming baby and a super hyper child (experienced both on the NE this week).

I'm pretty much only debating whether I want to just do it one way or both...and then which way. I'll probably be awake almost the whole time going down so it would be nice to have no one around me but I would also love to avoid that horrible childish assigned seating (I know the conductor has a method to the madness but it kills me to have cars with many empty rows while packing everyone into one car) that I experienced coming up from ATL to DC last year. I might just do it both ways lol, or commit to chilling in the lounge one way.

But yes, I'm all for more business class on "long distance" trains. I've never done a sleeper, I don't tend to mind coach and can deal with it on overnight rides. But I'd love just less crowding advantages of BC.
 
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Maglev

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I really really want a higher chance of not having anyone sit next to me... ...But I'd love just less crowding advantages of BC.
I guess this is not guaranteed. That is why I said that it would be nice to do something similar to some airlines, which close off a middle seat in a row of three and sell the other two seats at a premium. But on a train, with rows of two, this means cutting the capacity in half and would suggest a fare twice that of coach.
 
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Cho Cho Charlie

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I really really want a higher chance of not having anyone sit next to me... ...But I'd love just less crowding advantages of BC.
My experiences with BC have been a bit different. Business travelers tend to travel alone. So, unless you board at the very first station of the route, you'll find one person sitting at every window seat, leaving you with numerous isle seats to only choose from when you board at any later station. If you are the "unusual", and traveling with a companion, you'll have to settle sitting in isle seats across from each other.

At least families tend to sit clumped together. :D
 
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I really really want a higher chance of not having anyone sit next to me... ...But I'd love just less crowding advantages of BC.
My experiences with BC have been a bit different. Business travelers tend to travel alone. So, unless you board at the very first station of the route, you'll find one person sitting at every window seat, leaving you with numerous isle seats to only choose from when you board at any later station. If you are the "unusual", and traveling with a companion, you'll have to settle sitting in isle seats across from each other.
At least families tend to sit clumped together. :D
lol, I guess I've been lucky. A large chunk of my train riding is on the NEC. Since I live in DC going north we are the originating station, so yes, I get to pick from many open choices
 

Everydaymatters

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Does anyone have a list of which long distance trains now have Business Class? I know the Vermonter does, as I have a reservation. Also, I believe the Pennsylvanian has BC.
 

KmH

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I booked Business Class from CUS to Galesburg ($16 more) on train #383 (Illinois Zephyr) so I could use Chicago's Metro Lounge.

From what I've seen it looks like the #383 uses the Lounge/Cafe car as it's Business Class space.

I'm not sure how that works out since I've not used that train before.
 

Tennessee Traveler

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All the Illinois trains and several in the Northeast use the combination Business Class and Cafe car. It provides 2 x 1 seating and the seats are large like first class airline seats. You will like it.
 

Triley

Conductor
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Dec 14, 2008
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..., but ideally business class involves 2-1 deluxe seating.
I'll admit, the few times I have taken BC was because of the 2-1 recliner seating. However, those single level cars are few and far between. Plus, I don't think we'll ever see new cars like those.
Without those special seats, to me, BC is really nothing more than a "free" small soda, and maybe priority boarding.
Again, I try to explain to people here, but no one wants to hear me. At least on the corridor, the drinks handed out are not the small ones any more, they are only used for mixers now. Business Class gets full sized revenue drinks now, and it's not just a single one that you get either... As long as you're not passing them around to people you're walking by, and you're not coming up every 15 minutes and putting the drinks in your luggage (yes, both have happened with me), I will keep the goods coming.

As far as priority boarding, the announcement is even being made in Boston now for business class, military personnel, etc. Sounds like they're really trying to make an effort now.
 

PVD

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I'm not sure I would characterize the split cars as few and far between. They are in use on the LSL from Boston, all Empire Service trains, just about all single levels I can think of in the midwest, and a bunch of trains in the Northeast. Between Amfleet and Horizon there are quite a few of them.
 

daybeers

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Jan 6, 2016
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Besides 66 and 67, is there any trains one can be fairly sure will have 2x1 business class car? I'm hoping to schedule the right train so I can use an upgrade coupon I have.
 
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