CZ CHI-RNO and back for Jul 4th weekend: What should I document?

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Ferroequinologist

Service Attendant
Joined
Jan 18, 2016
Messages
114
I think this will be my 4th of 5th trip on the CZ, again in a roomette. Leaving CHI on 7/1 and returning 7/6.

I'm pretty sure all meals will still be served in my room, but what I'm wondering is how they'll manage the lounge car.

A recent YT video shows that the dining and lounge cars are still part of the consist (
).

What questions can I answer on this trip?
Someone said you had a review of the food on the SW Chief. Where is it? Thanks
 

Nick Farr

Train Attendant
Joined
Dec 25, 2019
Messages
90
How boarding is handled—are they handing out face masks to those without and asking people to stay 6 feet away from each other?
Everyone inside CUS is required to have a face covering, and I observed pretty strict compliance.

The attendant at the entrance to the Metropolitan lounge seemed to have lost control of the morning queue a bit. I got in from GRR around 9.

Everyone from the Metropolitan Lounge seemed to practice social distancing once they called our train and had us line up in the hallway.

How clean is the roomette? Obviously cleaned and sanitized well? Or hard to tell?
The one thing I noticed is that the lights in the hallway are *super bright*. And yes, the roomette has been cleaned to a level of detail that I've never seen before. Usually under the seats or in crawl spaces there's one or two things, but it's pretty spotless now. The only things that look dirty are the grease on the rails under the seats that slide into a bed, and you have to be on the floor to see it.

Things elsewhere in the car appear to have been deep cleaned as well.

What new rules/restrictions are there that the SCA tells you about?
Face covering on all the time unless you're in your room.

Also, they came and took a dinner order and asked if I wanted it in my room or in the dining car. I opted for in my room, never did that before.

And of course like always with us on AU, how the meals are served and what they are!
I should start a whole new thread about that!!!
 

Nick Farr

Train Attendant
Joined
Dec 25, 2019
Messages
90
And where are the Meals? How do you allow for 6 feet apart in the dining car, when there are 4 to a table, and the tables are back to back?
IMG_20200701_170030.jpg

They did the same thing as every other restaurant and "removed" half the tables. Every other table is not available for seating, and they're staggered so to your front, back, and side there's an empty table.

It feels like they want you to dine in your room if possible. They offered 6:30 or 7:00 not the normal 6-9 dinner service. Not many people on the train, but not empty either.

No flex dining for coach passengers, only sleepers.
 

Nick Farr

Train Attendant
Joined
Dec 25, 2019
Messages
90
I’m in CUS metro lounge as we speak.

Second floor is closed.
They opened it back up but that's probably because the first floor was looking like a usual any other day.

They made one announcement offering canned sodas in the lounge.
 

Nick Farr

Train Attendant
Joined
Dec 25, 2019
Messages
90
Someone said you had a review of the food on the SW Chief. Where is it? Thanks
This was my SC travelogue, but the food I talked about was the old dining car menu that's gone forever I guess.

It's wasn't *amazing* quality but the Signature Steak and cheesecake I'll miss
 

Nick Farr

Train Attendant
Joined
Dec 25, 2019
Messages
90
This was my SC travelogue, but the food I talked about was the old dining car menu that's gone forever I guess.

It's wasn't *amazing* quality but the Signature Steak and cheesecake I'll miss
 

Ferroequinologist

Service Attendant
Joined
Jan 18, 2016
Messages
114
Thanks but now this is ancient history.
 

tricia

Conductor
Joined
Aug 23, 2011
Messages
1,065
Thanks for all the first-hand details, Nick. Specifics about the food are especially helpful to those of us planning to travel long distance in the next few months....
 

Nick Farr

Train Attendant
Joined
Dec 25, 2019
Messages
90
Thanks for all the first-hand details, Nick. Specifics about the food are especially helpful to those of us planning to travel long distance in the next few months....
I'm working my way through the meals in the thread discussing flex dining. It's not that bad, actually.

Another day on the train, let me know what other questions you have! Greets from Winter Park!
 

HenryK

Service Attendant
Joined
Jul 12, 2015
Messages
226
Be aware that Chicago is imposing a mandatory 14 day quarantine on all travelers coming in from the 14 hotspot states, including California, Nevada and Utah, effective 12:01 a.m. Monday July 6.
 

Nick Farr

Train Attendant
Joined
Dec 25, 2019
Messages
90
Be aware that Chicago is imposing a mandatory 14 day quarantine on all travelers coming in from the 14 hotspot states, including California, Nevada and Utah, effective 12:01 a.m. Monday July 6.
The order is 14 days or the extent of your trip to Chicago, whichever is less.
 

dogbert617

OBS Chief
Joined
Aug 19, 2016
Messages
836
I’m in CUS metro lounge as we speak.

Second floor is closed.

Mini cans of Coke/Diet Coke and light snacks are available but you have to ask the attendant for them. Interestingly, the lounge in D.C still has the soda machine working as usual.
That's good to hear the Chicago Metropolitan Lounge still has snacks and drinks available, if you ask an attendant to give you some. I do wonder, are the showers still available for use in the Chicago lounge, for passengers waiting to board their next train?

This was my SC travelogue, but the food I talked about was the old dining car menu that's gone forever I guess.

It's wasn't *amazing* quality but the Signature Steak and cheesecake I'll miss
I loved ordering the signature steak, back when the traditional dining car menu was offered! Last I heard, was that through the end of August 2020, that the flex dining menu was going to be served on western long distance trains. I really hope that Amtrak goes back to the traditional dining car menu starting in September, fingers crossed. I do worry just like you that the old dining car menu won't be brought back, but I guess we'll see what happens down the road.
 
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