Cheers guys, much appreciated...In actual fact, Ives just received an e- mail from Amtrak advising of the change in meal service on the train out of Chicago....
Well, as my questions aren't considered too dumb....here's another,...will we get much sleep ?...we wonder how comfy the beds within the roomette are. Are the mattresses comfortable enough to get a decent nights sleep?.. Also as we will be taking
This trip in February I expect it will be cold, so are the rooms warm enough, and are they insulated from noise ?
As you may be able to guess, we really are most excited about this holiday, as it's so different from the types of holiday we normally take.
Thanks again, and greetings from across the pond to you all !!
I generally sleep pretty well on Amtrak. The movement of the train sort of rocks you to sleep, but you should know that the mattresses are only a couple inches thick. The beds are a little over 2 feet wide. You can get more info about the Superliner Roomette here and for the Viewliner Roomette here. Also, if you want a tour of all the rooms, here's the Viewliner Sleeping Car Virtual Tour and the Superliner Sleeping Car Virtual Tour. Those are very good tools Amtrak offers to get a good sense of the layout and dimensions of all rooms.
The trains can get cold at night, however each room has it's own thermostat which I've found generally works pretty well. Occasionally you'll have one that doesn't work properly, though. Each occupant automatically gets one blanket, one sheet, and two pillows for their bed. If that's not enough for comfort, feel free to ask your Sleeper Car Attendant (SCA) for more "fixings" and they should be happy to oblige! They almost always keep a surplus of blankets and pillows, so it's not a big hassle for anyone.
I should mention tipping, since this is a common point of confusion for many newbies. My rule of thumb for tipping is $5 per person per night for average service. If the SCA is very rude, unhelpful, or hard to find, I don't tip much or at all. If they are very helpful and pleasant, I will tip more (sometimes $10-$15 per person per night). But the $5 is my average baseline. You should also tip in the dining car. As a sleeper passenger, all meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) in the dining car are free. For breakfast, you can usually get one entree, one side (such as sausage or bacon), and one drink. For lunch and dinner each person can get one entree, a side salad, one drink, and one dessert. I always tip as I would in a restaurant, which is 15-20% of the listed menu price, depending on the service. You also have the option to order your meal to your room, via your SCA. When I do that, I tip my SCA as I would my waiter in the dining car, since he/she is effectively doing the job of the waiter in that case. I will also mention that if you're thirsty throughout the day, there is a self service stand with hot coffee in the morning, as well as juice, bottled water, and ice all day. Feel free to help yourself to as much as you want!
Routes Traveled: Silver Meteor, Silver Star, Crescent, Lake Shore Limited, California Zephyr, Sunset Limited, Texas Eagle, Ethan Allen Express, Empire Service, Maple Leaf, Adirondack, Acela Express, Northeast Regional, Keystone Service
Wish List: Auto Train, Cardinal, CONO, Empire Builder, Southwest Chief, Crescent (overnight), Adirondack w/ Great Dome, Downeaster