- Oct 21, 2015
The at your seat coach meal was eliminated on trains that still have dining cars. It didn’t require any extra staffing, and it was selling (some on this board have said it was successful, as far as I know there is no data). So it had to be lowering the losses of F&B on those routes. Same with the big sky dinners.Something “selling” doesn’t mean it’s covering its costs or satisfying a mandate. The problem is that the mandate effectively required eliminating losses on food service, not just reducing them. Food service on Amtrak starts with a relatively high cost base (staff, equipment, catering logistics), and has a limited overall revenue potential (limited by the the more restrictive of the amount of storage space on board, the number of passengers on the train, and the price those passengers are willing to pay; essentially a supply-and-demand problem). So even if a certain practice was overall financially positive vs. the previously existing model, it may not have been enough to eliminate all of the losses for food service. It’s possible the best they could hope for under that model still only gets them part way towards their goal.