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12-hour upgrade coupon Acela BC to FC WAS-BOS


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#1 daybeers

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 11:44 PM

I want to go to a concert on the night of June 14th, 2018 in Boston at the Royale nightclub, which is about equidistant between South Station and Back Bay. Even though the Saver fare for the Regional is only $79, the Acela fare is $184. I have an upgrade coupon which expires in September and would probably be wasted on NER BC, so I've decided to take the Acela and upgrade to First Class.

 

I have a few questions:

1. My coupon is a 12-hour upgrade. Is there any chance 2164 FC WAS-BOS will be sold out? It leaves WAS at noon, so I'll be calling probably right at midnight.

 

2. I've never taken Acela FC, so I don't know what to expect with the food service. I've heard it's good, but I don't know if it's been victim to the downgrades other Amtrak services have seen. Will the meal WAS-NYP and another between NYP-BOS be enough to tide me over for the day, or should I try to bring something on the train also?

 

3. Kindof a second part to the first question: if the two meals aren't enough food, does anyone have any recommendations for (preferably on the cheaper side to make up for the splurge on Acela :giggle: ) dinner places in the Back Bay or South Station area?

 

4. Are there any nearby attractions in the Back Bay or South Station area (Theatre District) I can see between 6:40 pm when 2164 gets in and 8:30 pm, which is when I'll probably want to be at the venue?

 

Thanks in advance!


Amtrak travel so far: only 10,207 miles: Springfield Shuttle (12), Northeast Regional (25), Acela (1), Lake Shore Limited (2), Pennsylvanian (2), Capitol Limited (1)

Ambus mileage (3 trips): 108

Other rail transit: WMATA (~830 miles), Metra, CTA, MTA, MBTA, Metro-North


#2 Acela150

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Posted 12 January 2018 - 01:55 AM

Since the 14th is a Thursday I think you'll be ok. 

 

As far as what to expect. Once your upgraded be sure to use the ClubAcela in DC. That's a decent perk. And you'll be able to board before everyone else. I rode 2165 about a month ago and was only offered one meal between RTE and PHL. Which somewhat bothered me. Normally on that type of trip I'm offered two. All drinks are included in your ticket. Including booze. As for if those two meals will be enough to tide you over. That's for each person to decide. For me it's usually enough. As for dinner choices their is a food court in South Station. It has a Mickey D's, Pizza Place, A cajun grill, and a Chinese joint. That's something there. I can't think of anything else off hand. 

 

I can also suggest sitting on the right hand side of the train. Just east of New Haven you'll be on the good side for Long Island Sound. 


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#3 daybeers

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Posted 12 January 2018 - 02:42 AM

Since the 14th is a Thursday I think you'll be ok. 

 

As far as what to expect. Once your upgraded be sure to use the ClubAcela in DC. That's a decent perk. And you'll be able to board before everyone else. I rode 2165 about a month ago and was only offered one meal between RTE and PHL. Which somewhat bothered me. Normally on that type of trip I'm offered two. All drinks are included in your ticket. Including booze. As for if those two meals will be enough to tide you over. That's for each person to decide. For me it's usually enough. As for dinner choices their is a food court in South Station. It has a Mickey D's, Pizza Place, A cajun grill, and a Chinese joint. That's something there. I can't think of anything else off hand. 

 

I can also suggest sitting on the right hand side of the train. Just east of New Haven you'll be on the good side for Long Island Sound. 

Thanks for the info! Huh, that's too bad that you only got one meal. I really hope I get two: I certainly paid enough for it!

 

Will keep the seat suggestion in mind.


Amtrak travel so far: only 10,207 miles: Springfield Shuttle (12), Northeast Regional (25), Acela (1), Lake Shore Limited (2), Pennsylvanian (2), Capitol Limited (1)

Ambus mileage (3 trips): 108

Other rail transit: WMATA (~830 miles), Metra, CTA, MTA, MBTA, Metro-North


#4 Acela150

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Posted 12 January 2018 - 07:35 AM

 

Since the 14th is a Thursday I think you'll be ok. 

 

As far as what to expect. Once your upgraded be sure to use the ClubAcela in DC. That's a decent perk. And you'll be able to board before everyone else. I rode 2165 about a month ago and was only offered one meal between RTE and PHL. Which somewhat bothered me. Normally on that type of trip I'm offered two. All drinks are included in your ticket. Including booze. As for if those two meals will be enough to tide you over. That's for each person to decide. For me it's usually enough. As for dinner choices their is a food court in South Station. It has a Mickey D's, Pizza Place, A cajun grill, and a Chinese joint. That's something there. I can't think of anything else off hand. 

 

I can also suggest sitting on the right hand side of the train. Just east of New Haven you'll be on the good side for Long Island Sound. 

Thanks for the info! Huh, that's too bad that you only got one meal. I really hope I get two: I certainly paid enough for it!

 

Will keep the seat suggestion in mind.

 

 

You're not paying for it. You're using a coupon code. :) 


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"Mainline 66W Recrew On Board at Abrams ready to head east when you can handle us, Ok 66W, ok on signal indication at Norris, take it to the Falls to wait for the window"

#5 AmtrakBlue

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Posted 12 January 2018 - 08:23 AM

 

Since the 14th is a Thursday I think you'll be ok. 
 
As far as what to expect. Once your upgraded be sure to use the ClubAcela in DC. That's a decent perk. And you'll be able to board before everyone else. I rode 2165 about a month ago and was only offered one meal between RTE and PHL. Which somewhat bothered me. Normally on that type of trip I'm offered two. All drinks are included in your ticket. Including booze. As for if those two meals will be enough to tide you over. That's for each person to decide. For me it's usually enough. As for dinner choices their is a food court in South Station. It has a Mickey D's, Pizza Place, A cajun grill, and a Chinese joint. That's something there. I can't think of anything else off hand. 
 
I can also suggest sitting on the right hand side of the train. Just east of New Haven you'll be on the good side for Long Island Sound. 

Thanks for the info! Huh, that's too bad that you only got one meal. I really hope I get two: I certainly paid enough for it!
 
Will keep the seat suggestion in mind.
 
 
You're not paying for it. You're using a coupon code. :) 
But s/he’s paying a lot more for the Acela BC than would have for the regional. ;)


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#6 Acela150

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Posted 12 January 2018 - 09:21 AM

 

Since the 14th is a Thursday I think you'll be ok. 
 
As far as what to expect. Once your upgraded be sure to use the ClubAcela in DC. That's a decent perk. And you'll be able to board before everyone else. I rode 2165 about a month ago and was only offered one meal between RTE and PHL. Which somewhat bothered me. Normally on that type of trip I'm offered two. All drinks are included in your ticket. Including booze. As for if those two meals will be enough to tide you over. That's for each person to decide. For me it's usually enough. As for dinner choices their is a food court in South Station. It has a Mickey D's, Pizza Place, A cajun grill, and a Chinese joint. That's something there. I can't think of anything else off hand. 
 
I can also suggest sitting on the right hand side of the train. Just east of New Haven you'll be on the good side for Long Island Sound. 

Thanks for the info! Huh, that's too bad that you only got one meal. I really hope I get two: I certainly paid enough for it!
 
Will keep the seat suggestion in mind.
 
 
You're not paying for it. You're using a coupon code. :) 
But s/he’s paying a lot more for the Acela BC than would have for the regional. ;)


Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

True.


Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum
These posts are my views and opinions.

Donate your spare time! Be a Volunteer Firefighter!
 
"Mainline 66W Recrew On Board at Abrams ready to head east when you can handle us, Ok 66W, ok on signal indication at Norris, take it to the Falls to wait for the window"

#7 MMA

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Posted 12 January 2018 - 10:13 AM

      The noon Acela is the least busy one from Washington. The train might fill at New York, however. You should receive the two meals. The meals tend to be on the small size for a big person. One of the meals is usually a "small bites" or just a snack tray. Believe it or not, people pay for FC and don't take the meals. You can ask if there are any extra meals left over after everyone has been served. 

    As stated. there are food options in South Station. There is a food seating area  upstairs over the McD . Across Dartmouth street from Back Bay Station, there is Copley Place Mall with both fast food and  higher class restaurants such as "Legal Seafoods" and Top of the Hub in the Prudential Center.



#8 Manny T

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Posted 12 January 2018 - 11:06 AM

Check out the photos of First Class meals on Acela posted on Yelp:

https://www.yelp.com...xpress-new-york

 

The food looks airline quality awful to me.



#9 daybeers

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Posted 12 January 2018 - 01:06 PM

You're not paying for it. You're using a coupon code. :)
But s/he’s paying a lot more for the Acela BC than would have for the regional. ;)

Yes, that was my point.


Amtrak travel so far: only 10,207 miles: Springfield Shuttle (12), Northeast Regional (25), Acela (1), Lake Shore Limited (2), Pennsylvanian (2), Capitol Limited (1)

Ambus mileage (3 trips): 108

Other rail transit: WMATA (~830 miles), Metra, CTA, MTA, MBTA, Metro-North


#10 daybeers

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Posted 12 January 2018 - 01:07 PM

      The noon Acela is the least busy one from Washington. The train might fill at New York, however. You should receive the two meals. The meals tend to be on the small size for a big person. One of the meals is usually a "small bites" or just a snack tray. Believe it or not, people pay for FC and don't take the meals. You can ask if there are any extra meals left over after everyone has been served. 

    As stated. there are food options in South Station. There is a food seating area  upstairs over the McD . Across Dartmouth street from Back Bay Station, there is Copley Place Mall with both fast food and  higher class restaurants such as "Legal Seafoods" and Top of the Hub in the Prudential Center.

I'll check these out, thanks! How is the food quality? I don't know if the pictures look "airline quality awful" as Manny T put it.


Amtrak travel so far: only 10,207 miles: Springfield Shuttle (12), Northeast Regional (25), Acela (1), Lake Shore Limited (2), Pennsylvanian (2), Capitol Limited (1)

Ambus mileage (3 trips): 108

Other rail transit: WMATA (~830 miles), Metra, CTA, MTA, MBTA, Metro-North


#11 EchoSierra

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Posted 14 January 2018 - 06:56 PM

I just got off Acela 2253, BOS-WAS.  Food quality is OK.  Better than food in economy class on an airline, a step below the food in first class on an airline.  I was served two meals on the train; first one after departing PVD, and the second one departing NWK.  They try to pass off their cooking method as something fancy "Our sous vide method locks in the flavor" (or something like that) which is a fancy term for food that's been vacuum sealed in a plastic bag and boiled in a pot of water heated by a curling iron. (I'm serious, Google it!)

 

I had the beef and mushroom risotto.  It didn't look great, but it was actually quite delicious.  I ordered it twice!


Edited by EchoSierra, 14 January 2018 - 06:57 PM.


#12 daybeers

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Posted 14 January 2018 - 07:01 PM

I just got off Acela 2253, BOS-WAS.  Food quality is OK.  Better than food in economy class on an airline, a step below the food in first class on an airline.  I was served two meals on the train; first one after departing PVD, and the second one departing NWK.  They try to pass off their cooking method as something fancy "Our sous vide method locks in the flavor" (or something like that) which is a fancy term for food that's been vacuum sealed in a plastic bag and boiled in a pot of water heated by a curling iron. (I'm serious, Google it!)

 

I had the beef and mushroom risotto.  It didn't look great, but it was actually quite delicious.  I ordered it twice!

Thanks for the report, Echo! Anything else to report besides the food, i.e. the ride quality, etc?


Amtrak travel so far: only 10,207 miles: Springfield Shuttle (12), Northeast Regional (25), Acela (1), Lake Shore Limited (2), Pennsylvanian (2), Capitol Limited (1)

Ambus mileage (3 trips): 108

Other rail transit: WMATA (~830 miles), Metra, CTA, MTA, MBTA, Metro-North


#13 the_traveler

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Posted 14 January 2018 - 07:55 PM

I hope it was better than the food you get in economy on a plane - unless you buy it, there is none on domestic flights in economy!:giggle:

I was quite satisfied with the food in Acela First! The free unlimited booze probably helped some!:)

Although faster (or maybe because of it), I find Acela can be rougher than a Regional. That being said, if they were near or at the same price, I would chose Acela. Especially if I had an upgrade coupon, and especially on the NYP-BOS segment.
Take it easy .......

Take the train instead and enjoy the ride!

The view is much better at 3 feet than it is at 30,000 feet!

#14 Acela150

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Posted 14 January 2018 - 10:12 PM

I've found many of the meals quite delicious. One of my favorites was a Rosemary Chicken. I was lucky to have that multiple times. Last winter they had a Flat Iron steak, mashed potatoes, and Brussel Sprouts (YUCK) served with a merlot wine sauce on the side. I poured the merlot sauce over my steak and potatoes and it was delicious. My absolute favorite was a stuffed French toast. Oh my... Next level Acela FC Breakfast.  


These posts are my views and opinions.

Donate your spare time! Be a Volunteer Firefighter!
 
"Mainline 66W Recrew On Board at Abrams ready to head east when you can handle us, Ok 66W, ok on signal indication at Norris, take it to the Falls to wait for the window"

#15 EchoSierra

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Posted 14 January 2018 - 11:43 PM

 

I just got off Acela 2253, BOS-WAS.  Food quality is OK.  Better than food in economy class on an airline, a step below the food in first class on an airline.  I was served two meals on the train; first one after departing PVD, and the second one departing NWK.  They try to pass off their cooking method as something fancy "Our sous vide method locks in the flavor" (or something like that) which is a fancy term for food that's been vacuum sealed in a plastic bag and boiled in a pot of water heated by a curling iron. (I'm serious, Google it!)

 

I had the beef and mushroom risotto.  It didn't look great, but it was actually quite delicious.  I ordered it twice!

Thanks for the report, Echo! Anything else to report besides the food, i.e. the ride quality, etc?

 

 

Ride quality was ever so slightly smoother than the regional (I think the Acela cars have better suspension), but not by much.

 

The service was a bit cold.  By that, I mean it wasn't friendly, but it also wasn't rude.  From reports that I've read, some service crews are attentive and will keep your glass filled at all times.  With the service crew I had today, passengers had to flag them down for everything, although they were very quick to deliver anything that passengers asked for.  The train was completely sold out today, so I bet they were a bit overwhelmed.  Two attendants serving 44 people is a lot of work!  (contrast that with airlines where a typical premium service narrow body flight can have up to 28 premium class seats, but served by three flight attendants)

 

I also found it interesting how the Acela does not restock at NYP like the Regionals do.  Departing NYP first class ran out of orange juice for mimosas and screwdrivers.

 

Also, if people haven't mentioned already, tipping the service crew is a custom.


Edited by EchoSierra, 14 January 2018 - 11:44 PM.


#16 PRR 60

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Posted Yesterday, 08:00 AM

If yet another tipping discussion is desired (usually about every six months, more or less), let's start a new topic in the main forum. This one is for AGR and upgrade coupons and the benefits of the upgraded service.



#17 MMA

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Posted Yesterday, 09:26 AM

If yet another tipping discussion is desired (usually about every six months, more or less), let's start a new topic in the main forum. This one is for AGR and upgrade coupons and the benefits of the upgraded service.

Bravo PRR 60! I am glad to see a moderator take action on  the erroneous statement on tipping in the prior post. 



#18 Ryan

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Posted Yesterday, 10:56 AM

If you truly wanted to honor his wishes, you would not have replied at all, since further discussion of the topic is not desired in this thread.

Doubly so since you’re wrong.

Edited by Ryan, Yesterday, 11:01 AM.

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#19 acelafan

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Posted Yesterday, 11:04 AM

I've used the upgrade coupon a few times and never had an issue 12 hours before departure (boarding at WAS or BOS). I guess there's always a chance it could be sold out.

I thought the meal portions were a tad small but all the offerings were tasty to me. Hope you enjoy it!

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