Lounge access for World Mastercard holders through 8/31/20

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pennyk

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I just received this email from Amtrak Guest Rewards:

Dear Penny,​
Because you are a valued Amtrak Guest Rewards® Mastercard® cardholder, we invite you to use our Amtrak® lounges if you need to travel with us. We are extending lounge access to all World Mastercard® cardholders through August 31, 2020. When you arrive, simply show the lounge attendant your Amtrak Guest Rewards® World Mastercard® and your same-day Amtrak reservation for entry.​
We are taking extra steps to keep our stations and trains clean, keep you safe, and remain an essential part of transportation in America. As part of Amtrak's ongoing commitment to protect customers and employees, Amtrak is requiring that all customers in stations and on our trains wear facial coverings.​
Thank you for being an Amtrak Guest Rewards® World Mastercard® cardholder.​
Sincerely,
Vicky Radke
Vicky Radke
Senior Director, Amtrak Guest Rewards​
 

the_traveler

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Me too.

But how many will be traveling on Amtrak prior to 8/31/20?🤔 And I hear the Lounges currently have little offerings, like snacks.
 

AmtrakBlue

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I have a trip in August m, but only to BAL, so won’t be using a lounge.
 

me_little_me

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Me too.

But how many will be traveling on Amtrak prior to 8/31/20?🤔 And I hear the Lounges currently have little offerings, like snacks.
"Little" is a good word for it. Especially if one has tried Select class on Brightline. Wow! And no need for attendants, either. You scan your ticket for entry and everything, including wine and fresh fruit as well as other snacks are complimentary.
 

the_traveler

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Yeah, I was pleasantly surprised when I did.

I was in Miami, we were the only 4 in the Lounge - and everything (beer, wine, fresh fruit, snacks, etc...) was available self serve! And then we get up to the train, and before you board, there’s more! And after you get to your seat, there was more! (And service too!)

Why can’t Amtrak be like that?
 

bratkinson

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I was in Miami, we were the only 4 in the Lounge - and everything (beer, wine, fresh fruit, snacks, etc...) was available self serve! And then we get up to the train, and before you board, there’s more! And after you get to your seat, there was more! (And service too!)

Why can’t Amtrak be like that?
As long as the mantra from the top is 'cut your way to profitability', Amtrak will NEVER give away 'free stuff' like Brightline. Given that Flynn is a clone of Anderson, it's not likely to change anytime soon.

And the meager free stuff in any of the Amtrak Club Acela's and Metropolitan Lounges is as low cost as they can make it. Even the Chicago lounge (I was there in early February) appears to have made some freebie cuts or intended to make the 'flavor shots' in the soda machine 'out of order' permanently.
 

Skyline

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Yeah, I was pleasantly surprised when I did.

I was in Miami, we were the only 4 in the Lounge - and everything (beer, wine, fresh fruit, snacks, etc...) was available self serve! And then we get up to the train, and before you board, there’s more! And after you get to your seat, there was more! (And service too!)

Why can’t Amtrak be like that?
It's not clear ... how does self serve work in the age of Corona?
 

MARC Rider

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Me too.

But how many will be traveling on Amtrak prior to 8/31/20?🤔 And I hear the Lounges currently have little offerings, like snacks.
I didn't get one, but, then, I'm Select Plus and I get lounge access anyway. Now, if only I was able to actually take a trip!

Snacks? What's with the constant need to feed the face? While having a snack in the lounge is nice, the main point of the lounge is to provide a quiet place to wait for the train away from the riff-raff, while sitting on seats more comfortable than those in the waiting room, and also to get priority boarding. Under the circumstances of this epidemic, I think I can do without having food available.
 

MARC Rider

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Yeah, I was pleasantly surprised when I did.

I was in Miami, we were the only 4 in the Lounge - and everything (beer, wine, fresh fruit, snacks, etc...) was available self serve! And then we get up to the train, and before you board, there’s more! And after you get to your seat, there was more! (And service too!)

Why can’t Amtrak be like that?
Maybe because Brightline is just a train that goes only from Miami to West Palm Beach at fares greatly in excess of those on the competing Tri-Rail service, and thuis feels they need to offer something extra to attract passengers. On the other hand, Amtrak (especially in the NEC) actually provides practical transportation for people who are more concerned in getting somewhere rather than feeding their faces.

Anyway, right now, given the epidemic, I would probably refrain from accepting offers of free snacks right now, as they might also include a side of Covid-19.
 

pennyk

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I didn't get one, but, then, I'm Select Plus and I get lounge access anyway. Now, if only I was able to actually take a trip!

Snacks? What's with the constant need to feed the face? While having a snack in the lounge is nice, the main point of the lounge is to provide a quiet place to wait for the train away from the riff-raff, while sitting on seats more comfortable than those in the waiting room, and also to get priority boarding. Under the circumstances of this epidemic, I think I can do without having food available.
I am Select Executive and received the email. I totally agree with you regarding snacks. I do not think there will be self service snacks anywhere for quite a while. I may be mistaken, but I think I read that Brightline has suspended their service. (Even if they have not suspended their service, my guess is that they suspended self service snacks.)
 

Devil's Advocate

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Snacks? What's with the constant need to feed the face? While having a snack in the lounge is nice, the main point of the lounge is to provide a quiet place to wait for the train away from the riff-raff, while sitting on seats more comfortable than those in the waiting room, and also to get priority boarding. Under the circumstances of this epidemic, I think I can do without having food available.
It's almost as if different people have different reasons for using a lounge. I rarely eat anything in a lounge environment but it's clear from reading this and other forums that many people do, or at least want the option to do so. Depending on individual connections and scheduling the lounge may be the only practical place for someone to eat for the next several hours. If that's what does it for them so be it. The problem with COVID is that both lounges and flights/trains are being cut to the bone leaving few workarounds.
 

the_traveler

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It's almost as if different people have different reasons for using a lounge. I rarely eat anything in a lounge environment but it's clear from reading this and other forums that many people do, or at least want the option to do so. Depending on individual connections and scheduling the lounge may be the only practical place for someone to eat for the next several hours. If that's what does it for them so be it.
So why do so many people join airline club (lounges), and why do they have food, snacks and a bar? You can’t say for wifi and to charge up their laptops and phones. The last time I flew, there were (numerous) charging stations available at the gate!

I did pay to go to the DL Sky Club at DTW to get something to eat, even though I just got off a flight from ATL-DTW (and I started off a few hours before in MIA). Since ATL to DTW is under 900 miles, DL does not have a meal (either in F - where I was - or for sale in Y), and I still has a 2 hour flight to go, plus a 1 hour drive home.

So yes, I did go to the Lounge for food! And time wise, MIA and/or ATL to DTW is MUCH, MUCH, MUCH less than MIA-NYP! Perhaps even less than WAS-NYP on Amtrak - and both have lounges!
 

the_traveler

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Not all trains have food service either.

Examples are NYP and PHL to Harrisburg, PA on Keystones and Empire Service that operate between NYP and Albany, NY only. (If the train starts or continues beyond ALB, they do have food service.) Neither of these offer ANY food or cafe service at all.
 

Bob Dylan

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Not all trains have food service either.

Examples are NYP and PHL to Harrisburg, PA on Keystones and Empire Service that operate between NYP and Albany, NY only. (If the train starts or continues beyond ALB, they do have food service.) Neither of these offer ANY food or cafe service at all.
And didnt the Hiawathas stop when the Snack carts and LSA were removed??
 

MARC Rider

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So why do so many people join airline club (lounges), and why do they have food, snacks and a bar? You can’t say for wifi and to charge up their laptops and phones. The last time I flew, there were (numerous) charging stations available at the gate!
As I mentioned earlier, it's primarily to get away from the riff-raff (the major reason for all forms of first-class travel options), be able to wait for the train/plane in a quiet place with more comfortable seats than the common waiting area, and (in the case of Amtrak at least) priority boarding that bypasses the cattle line.

The food is a nice extra, but when I hang out at the lounges, I see that most of the people waiting aren't feeding their faces, they're just waiting for a train or plane.
 

MARC Rider

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Depending on individual connections and scheduling the lounge may be the only practical place for someone to eat for the next several hours.
Nearly all Amtrak stations with a lounge have numerous eateries where the passenger making a connection can find a bite to eat without leaving the station. Besides, even the best lounge snacks could hardly be considered a meal.
 

Devil's Advocate

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Nearly all Amtrak stations with a lounge have numerous eateries where the passenger making a connection can find a bite to eat without leaving the station. Besides, even the best lounge snacks could hardly be considered a meal.
Why is it so important to make your reason for using a lounge everybody's reason?
 
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MARC Rider

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please define "riff raff"
Different passengers have different definitions of people they would rather not have to associate with to closely. This is not necessarily a case of a particular race, ethnic background, social class, etc., but can also be behavioral. This might include people who talk too much, or insist on conversation when you don't want to talk, or people who are lugging around excessive luggage, or any number of things that a traveler could find annoying. Of course, there is so much diversity in terms of people that travelers might consider "undesirable," that it's entirely possible that some of them end up in the lounge. However, because the total number of people in the lounge is restricted, the chances that a traveler will end up having to deal with someone they would rather not is reduced, and if it happens, the traveler can easily avoid them.
 

MARC Rider

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Why is it so important to make your reason for using a lounge everybody's reason?
I have observed that most people using the lounge in normal times don't eat snacks, which would suggest that lounges aren't being offered as a way to serve snacks to passengers who would otherwise ride Greyhound if snacks weren't offered. They're being offered so that high-value customers can have a quiet place to wait for trains. Thus, providing snacks is probably a low priority for Amtrak, as doing so probably doesn't really have much of an impact on their bottom line. Which means when there's an over-riding situation that makes serving snacks unfeasible, like an epidemic of a highly contagious virus, it's perfectly reasonable for Amtrak to stop offering the snacks.
 

the_traveler

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I have observed that most people using the lounge in normal times don't eat snacks, which would suggest that lounges aren't being offered as a way to serve snacks to passengers who would otherwise ride Greyhound if snacks weren't offered. ... Which means when there's an over-riding situation that makes serving snacks unfeasible, like an epidemic of a highly contagious virus, it's perfectly reasonable for Amtrak to stop offering the snacks.
So you’re saying that once the pandemic is over, snacks can return and all the ”riff-raff” that sneak in can take them!

Right?🤔
 
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