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RTE_TrainGuy

List of meals served on all LD trains

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If this can be turned into a wiki thread, that might make more sense.

This is a good idea as well, and something I've been starting to pull together in my "spare" time. Nowhere near ready for prime time yet, but I'm hoping to have at least an outline put together "soon" so that we can go to work filling in details like this.

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CONO Southbound:

Dinner (abbreviated, service generally begins before the train pulls from the station)

Breakfast

Lunch

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I know that the northbound CS leaves LA too late for breakfast, but I just read a travelogue that stated that the PPC had pastries/muffins available at departure. Is this still in effect?

Edited by D.P. Roberts

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Guest Nathanael

Well, Amtrak does have this on the LSL schedule:

 

"Dining: Full meal service between New York and Chicago. Not available between Albany and Boston; Sleeping car passengers will receive complimentary hot Lounge car meal service.

 

Lounge: Sandwiches, snacks and beverages. (Note—Combined Diner/ Lounge provides food and beverage service between New York and Albany)."

 

Does that not cover it?

Well, that doesn't seem to be correct, because the combined diner/lounge wasn't providing food or beverage service between New York and Albany eastbound. Unless it's new since the last time I rode NY-Albany on the LSL (which was a few years back). Any recent (say, 2013) reports on the status of cafe car service on the eastbound between NY and Albany?

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Sunset Limited:

Westbound = Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Eastbound = Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

 

Crescent:

Southbound = Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Northbound = Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast

 

City of New Orleans:

Southbound = Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch

Northbound = Dinner, Breakfast

 

Texas Eagle:

Westbound = Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Eastbound = Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch

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I know that the northbound CS leaves LA too late for breakfast, but I just read a travelogue that stated that the PPC had pastries/muffins available at departure. Is this still in effect?

I've never noticed any goodies out of LA although it's possible I went to the PPC too late.

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I think that's been discontinued at least those boarding in LA now have whatever breakfast items the Metropolitan Lounge sets out. I've only been there in the evening and it was a nice selection of cookies, not the normal pretzels chips or gold fish (goldfish everywhere except NYP).

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Guest Nathanael

To consolidate some information which arrived in several different posts:

Lake Shore Limited #449 Westbound: Boxed Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast

Lake Shore Limited #49 Westbound: Dinner, Breakfast

 

OK, that's almost all of them. We're just missing:

Cardinal eastbound

Silver Meteor northbound

Silver Star northbound

Auto Train

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Auto train is dinner and breakfast both ways.

 

Cardinal eastbound is dinner out of CHI and then all 3 meals the next day.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone

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Guest Antagonist

Is there any logical reason that Amtrak does not include this information on their published schedules?

I think an accurate list, would need to include all possibilities of the train running early or running late. And let's face the fact that LD trains do indeed run off-schedule quite often.

 

This is also why I feel that the first post here is so very wrong for not including such. For example, if the train is suppose to pick you up at 5pm, you'll get dinner. But if the train doesn't pick you up until 9pm, you don't get dinner (but the first post here implies that Amtrak "owes" you a dinner, and will hold the dining car open just for you).

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On 448 and 449 the meal between Albany and Boston is not a "boxed meal" per se. It is a choice between a salad or a sandwich in each direction (one of the choices is a vegetarian option).

 

448 - Breakfast, Lunch, Limited menu dinner served in the cafe car.

449 - Limited menu lunch served in the cafe car, Dinner (after joining the NY section at Albany), Breakfast

 

I've made this run twice in the last 3 years, same both runs.

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The on-line menus (448, 449) make it out more like a meal served on the Cardinal, the Lake Shore has the same equipment:

 

448: A hot (microwaved) dinner: Vegetarian Pasta or Braised Beef Short Rib with Wine Sauce

449: A sandwich or salad, less exciting.

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Wouldn't early / late just be simple logic? I Think it would muddy a table,,, but then again my graphic guru is Tufte who preaches simplicity. Once the data is collected I would love to take a shot into making it into an image. I am already envisioning a cascading red/green/blue with standard set of labels (L-Limited, B-box). turning it into a nice 4"x 4". Set it so the longest trains were at the bottom,,, I am way too sick in too many ways,,,,

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Guest Nathanael

The way to present this is to present the standard "Amtrak meal hours" first.

 

Then say:

 

Many trains are scheduled to depart their initial station during one of these mealtimes, or arrive at the final station during one of these mealtimes. People often ask whether they will get a meal in this case, and this varies by train. The following is a listing the meals *normally served* if you are travelling from end to end on the train.

 

If the train is running late, you may get fewer meals -- you will *not* generally get extra meals beyond these, although the crew will provide emergency food in extreme cases.

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If you ride a train from end point to end point you will never get fewer meals because the train is late....

 

Also... I've never boarded the Crescent in Atlanta and not been offered dinner, even when the train was almost 2 hours late which pushed the meal time to almost 10. Ditto for Lunch on the Silver Meteor out of Orlando.

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The way to present this is to present the standard "Amtrak meal hours" first.

 

Then say:

 

Many trains are scheduled to depart their initial station during one of these mealtimes, or arrive at the final station during one of these mealtimes. People often ask whether they will get a meal in this case, and this varies by train. The following is a listing the meals *normally served* if you are travelling from end to end on the train.

 

If the train is running late, you may get fewer meals -- you will *not* generally get extra meals beyond these, although the crew will provide emergency food in extreme cases.

Regarding Extra meals/emergency food.

I rode on an extremely late CL from Chi to Was earlier this week. Scheduled departure of 6:40 pm was delayed until midnight. Scheduled arrival in WAS of 1:10 pm was delayed until 7:40 pm.

On the train, we were served

1) dessert [2 choices] and coffee [no other beverages]

2) breakfast

3) lunch

4) Amstew with rice

The delay was Amtrak's fault. We were told it was a mechanical issue, rumor was that they took a loco from a SWC to use on the CL. On my arrival on the SWC into CHI and check in to the lounge, the Metro lounge attendants had no word of a delay, and went ahead to take dinner reservations. About an hour later, we learned of a delay of at least an hour and so it went through the afternoon and evening. We were told several times that we would be served dinner, even though late. Finally, the CHI station agent ordered us sandwiches and chips, which arrived about 30-45 minutes before the train arrived - but they failed to order enough, so a second order went out and arrived later.

 

For vegetarians, a word of warning-all the ordered sandwiches were heavily meat laden, so if you get caught in a similar situation, have some backup food available. The goldfish and pretzel snacks one might normally expect to see in the lounge all had been consumed far before the scheduled CL departure, because there were 5 other trains that day with significant departure delays from CHI.

 

I am not blaming the dining car staff for the "dessert and coffee" abbreviated meal service. The onboard staff had TRIED to set us up for meal service and started cooking food before the consist pulled into CUS. They were not informed of how long the delay would last, either. But after 4 hours, they legally had to dump ALL the food, so there was nothing available to serve for dinner. We finally learned this when we were boarding the train, way too late for anyone to obtain food items from the station - and besides, most of the food service areas in Union Station already had closed, anyway.

 

Although they did not have a lot of resources to work with, the dining car staff really did try to serve us and put in far longer hours than they should have had to do.

 

One other caution. We nearly ran out of bottled water in the sleepers and dining car. Had fewer people been bustituted or switched to other alternatives at Pittsburgh, we definitely would have been out of bottled water. I've had this water scarcity happen in December, too, on a 2 hour late CL. So I think I'm going to start buying a big bottle beforehand and carry that with me. For some reason, the Capitol Limited dries me out far more than other long distance trains, and I routinely have nose bleeds when that happens.

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If the train is running late, you may get fewer meals -- you will *not* generally get extra meals beyond these, although the crew will provide emergency food in extreme cases.

There are two kinds of delays IMO and they are treated differently in regards to meals.

 

I was on a silver that was a few hours delayed into NYP. By the time we arrived it was around 2 pm but no lunch was served. Not that big of a deal.

 

But I was on an extremely delayed EB and we absolutely got extra meals. We got am stew and then they ordered KFC for us after that. We missed lunch one day bc of bustitution but we probably got three or four extra meals on board.

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The Silver Star northbound: Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, abbreviated dinner served after departure from Washington.

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Guest Nathanael

For the sake of consolidation:

 

I note that we've gotten two conflicting reports on whether the Crescent serves lunch heading into NY.

Also, I was mistaken earlier: we're missing the Silver Meteor *southbound*. We seem to have everything else more or less.

Thanks to everyone for collecting this info.

 

Auto Train

- 52 Northbound: Dinner, Breakfast

- 53 Southbound: Dinner, Breakfast

 

California Zephyr

- 5 Westbound: Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch

- 6 Eastbound: Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch

 

Capitol Limited

- 29 Westbound: Dinner, Breakfast

- 30 Eastbound: Dinner, Brunch

 

Cardinal

- 51 Westbound: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast

- 50 Eastbound: Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

 

City of New Orleans

- 59 Southbound: Dinner (abbrev.), Breakfast, Lunch

- 58 Northbound: Dinner, Breakfast

 

Coast Starlight

- 11 Southbound: Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

- 14 Northbound: Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

 

Crescent

- 19 Southbound: Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (abbrev.)

- 20 Northbound: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch (? reports vary)

 

Empire Builder

- 7 Westbound: Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast

- 27 Westbound: Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast (limited menu in cafe car)

- 8 Eastbound: Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch

- 28 Eastbound: Dinner (limited menu in cafe car), Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch

 

Lake Shore Limited

- 449 Westbound: Lunch (limited menu in cafe car), Dinner, Breakfast

- 49 Westbound: Dinner, Breakfast

- 448 Eastbound: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (limited menu in cafe car)

- 48 Eastbound: Breakfast, Lunch (note: cafe car also closes at Albany)

 

Silver Meteor

- 98 Northbound: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast

- 97 Southbound: ??

 

Silver Star

- 92 Northbound: Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (abbrev.) after Washington

- 91 Southbound: Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch

 

Southwest Chief

- 3 Westbound: Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast (abbrev.)

- 4 Eastbound: Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch

 

Sunset Limited

- 1 Westbound: Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

- 2 Eastbound: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

 

Texas Eagle (Sunset Limited through cars will get additional meals)

- 21 Southbound: Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

- 22 Northbound: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch

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well here is my first go at a table,,,, if you like it i will refine, PLEASE Make suggestions,,, (consider this V.1)

 

AmtrakLDMealSchedule_zps2287996e.jpg

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Thanks here is version two,, i still would like readability comments. If were building a website I would have the notes popup on mousever,, I will see I can figure out someway to make that happen

 

AmtrakLDMealSchedule2_zps5cab981d.jpg

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