Business Class on the Coast Starlight

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Trailrider1951

Train Attendant
Joined
Dec 11, 2007
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TAC
I am booked on the Coast Starlight from Los Angeles to Tacoma in mid-June. I have put in a bid to upgrade to Business Class from my purchased Coach seat. If I do receive the upgrade, what perks go with Business Class travel, and how crowded would the car be? When I booked the travel, the train was around 5% full, but has since gone to 10%. In past years, this train was sold out in Coach with every seat filled. I'm looking for more room, fewer people and less noise than the packed-to-the-gills Coach car. Thanks for your help!
 

Cal

Conductor
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Jan 23, 2021
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Socal
I believe the Coast Starlight business is one of the most hated on this forum, as I believe you get barely nothing extra that coach doesn't.
 

zephyr17

Conductor
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Jul 22, 2009
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I believe the Coast Starlight business is one of the most hated on this forum, as I believe you get barely nothing extra that coach doesn't.
You get regular Superliner coach seats, but with leather upholstery. That's about it.

In pre COVID days you could usually count on it being much less crowded than coach. You'd usually be able to have a seat pair to yourself as a single traveler. That was the main advantage in my book.

Also in pre COVID days Business got the chance to make meal reservations after sleepers, but before coach if you were in the car when they came through.

Don't know about cafe car discount coupons, if any.
 

Bob Dylan

Conductor
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May 31, 2009
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22,205
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Austin Texas
I am booked on the Coast Starlight from Los Angeles to Tacoma in mid-June. I have put in a bid to upgrade to Business Class from my purchased Coach seat. If I do receive the upgrade, what perks go with Business Class travel, and how crowded would the car be? When I booked the travel, the train was around 5% full, but has since gone to 10%. In past years, this train was sold out in Coach with every seat filled. I'm looking for more room, fewer people and less noise than the packed-to-the-gills Coach car. Thanks for your help!
Nice trip!
Since Amtrak is going back to Daily Trains by June, the Trains should be Fuller as they' ve announced they intend to sell all available seats after the New Schedules start.

It will probably be worthwhile to upgrade to the Business Class Coach to have a Seat by yourself, which as was said, is Regular Superliner Coach with Leather Seating.

There currently isn't any reliable info available as to what BC perks will be available,but pre-COVID you got Bottled Water included.( Not sure about Metro Lounge use @ LAX??)

Sleepers can be Pricey, but you might want to look into a Roomette since your Rail Fare is already paid.

You might even be able to snag a Roomette likd from Emeryville or Sacramento to Portland , which would include Breakfast and Lunch, then switch back to Coach for the trip from PDX to Tacoma.

I did some mock test bookings in June and saw that BC was like $150 LAX-TAC, a Roomette was $300-$400+ , but from SAC-PDX they were in the $ 200 Range which isnt alot for a Bed and 2 Meals ( Breakast and Lunch) especially if Full Dining has returned to Western LD Trains.

If you want to Upgrade to a Roomette, call and MODIFY your Rez with an Agent, dont Cancel it! Good Luck
 
Last edited:

zephyr17

Conductor
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Jul 22, 2009
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Washington State
I think you do, can't be sure.
I know Business Class on the Surfliners has access to LA's Metropolitan Lounge, so I imagine the Starlight's BC does.

Side note: I don't think they considered BC when designing LA's Metropolitan Lounge. It's really too small for it.
 

Cal

Conductor
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Jan 23, 2021
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Socal
I know Business Class on the Surfliners has access to LA's Metropolitan Lounge, so I imagine the Starlight's BC does.

Side note: I don't think they considered BC when designing LA's Metropolitan Lounge. It's really too small for it.
That's what I'm thinking.

I don't like LA's Metropolitan Lounge. It has the Starlight and Chief daily (pre covid) which are pretty well used. And the Eagle and Sunset tri-weekly, and the Eagle is very popular. And of course the Surfliners. It should be expanded to make it as nice as Portland's or Chicago's, the dinky thing we have in the warehouse (or office building, I don't know) is not suitable! The entrance from the main station is also quite bad..
 

Trailrider1951

Train Attendant
Joined
Dec 11, 2007
Messages
46
Location
TAC
Thanks everyone for the info. Looks like I have a pretty good chance to get 2 BC seats to myself if my bid is accepted, but no other perks beside that and a quieter car for my overnight trip. That will be enough for the $ I offered.
 

FrensicPic

Conductor
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Jan 15, 2012
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LAX
You also get (or used to get) a voucher to use in the diner or cafe car...IIRC it was $6 or so.
 
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