Silver Star & Silver meteor questions - sleeper cars

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Avk

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My husband and I are taking the Silver meteor down to Orlando and the silver star back up to Richmond VA. We booked a sleeper both ways, what is the food situation like? (We are traveling in March)

1. Do we get meals included? Breakfast, lunch a dinner? What times are they?
(We would be one the train from 10 PM - 1PM so I am assuming we would only get breakfast)
2. Are snacks included or do we have to pay for those? If we use room service do we need to Cary cash?

3. What are the snack car hours?

4. Should I bring cash to tip or is it not expected? (I always tip when I eat out but I am curious)

5. We have never actually done a sleeper overnight do we get blankets and pillows?
(That one seems silly to ask but here we are)

6. Any tips in general for the train? Last time we took it was 6 years ago on our honeymoon to new york and I have forgotten so many things!

I plan on packing snacks as I am a snacky person
 

pennyk

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The Silver Meteor offers flexible dining to sleeper passengers, whereas the Silver Star currently does not offer meals to sleeper passengers (but will starting May 1st).
https://www.amtrak.com/flexible-dining
On the Silver Meteor to Orlando, you should get breakfast and lunch before arriving in Orlando. Breakfast starts at 6:30am; lunch will start either at 11:30, 11:45 or noon (depending on whether the train is running on time, early or late). Snacks are not included with your sleeper fare on the Silver Meteor.

I believe the cafe car hours are 6am to 11pm, however, the cafe car will be closed temporarily during the day for attendant breaks.
Tips are customary.

If you have your attendant bring food to your room that is not included in your fare, you will be expected to provide payment to the attendant. I am not sure if sleeping car attendants will take your credit card (however I seem to recall passengers giving their cards to the attendants). I travel on the Silver Meteor often, but have never had an attendant bring my food to my room.

The former dining car on the Silver Meteor is now used as a "sleeper lounge." Sleeper passengers are generally welcome to sit in the sleeper car whenever the want.
 

jimmrl

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Mar 9, 2016
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As for #5, yes you get a thin blanket and a pillow for each bed.

Bring snacks and a power strip or extension cord since the two plugs are not in the best of places.
 

me_little_me

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In the past (before last October), where there was dining car service (like restaurants where they take your order, bring the food and drinks and bus the table), I always tipped just like at restaurants even though the service was, at times, poor enough that the owner would fire the server if it were a fine restaurant and Amtrak employees receive more in wages than at typical restaurants.
With the new standard, you go up to the counter in the diner, order your food then sit down until the "server" tells you to come get it, then pick it up (and do the same for the dessert) then bus your own table, I don't tip. There is no service. It's just like McDonalds. On our last trip with two of the trains having the new "service",there was a slight improvement with the "server" sometimes bringing it to the table but you bus your own table. At those times, left a small $2 tip for the two of us. But don't count on it. Mostly they make it clear in no uncertain terms that you do it yourself and a few aren't even nice about it even to the point of chastising you if you haven't already read the menu and/or don't know what you want.
 
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