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Devil's Advocate

Amtrak's New "Fresh Choices" Dining on CL & LSL

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Just looked at the menu. The breakfast is inadequate. Some of the cold choices for dinner may be appetizing, but still inadequate. The blurb about “ so your journey will have no boundaries “ is a glaring example of a corporate crock.

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The "Charcuterie Plate" has been renamed "Antipasto Plate" ... same description.

 

I guess the VP of Customer Experience heard enough, LOL!

Edited by FrensicPic

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Another new menu difference is that they added Corona to the alcohol list.

 

Whoop-dee-doo.

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Just got an email from Amtrak informing me of the food changes. Still no menu, link goes to the original press release on Amtrak's website.

I just received probably the same email. Although I have several trips in June, I will not be traveling on the Capitol Limited until July.

My trip is in mid-July. Already have a contingency plan in place. Have a long layover, there's a Giordano's in walking distance.

 

 

Spot on! And while other pax graze on their cold suppers, you can terrorize the Lounge with that wonderful aroma of a proper Chicago pizza!

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$6.50 for a domestic! That's higher than Fluffy can lift her ..... I don't think the airlines are even that high!

 

Even Southwest is $6 for a can of Miller Lite now. Although you can still buy drink coupons on ebay for less than that.

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The ADA as written does not address the issues stemming from the fact that certain ingredients are concealed in food and it does not address the issue stemming from the prevalence of cross-contamination.

 

They have recognized that food allergies can constitute a disability, in some instances this can require accommodation, there are FDA requirements to list major food allergens and contamination possibilities, but that is not a solution for all situations, since lots of people have less common allergies.

 

I'd be interested in any new or different information, I stand on my previously stated opinion that it shouldn't require a law (even though it often does) to do what is reasonable.

I managed to get a citation from a court case (thank you to the fellow who linked it) stating that providing full ingredients lists (as you would find on packages in the supermarket) is a reasonable accomodation in the context of college cafeterias. I am quite sure this would apply to Amtrak as well.

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No changes on the Amtrak website so far.

 

One menu update does appear Food Facts for the Southwest Chief, nothing major, the usual seasonal changes, such as French Toast replaces

the pancakes, salmon is replaced with another shrimp dish, and some other changes to the specials.

 

http://www.amtrakfoodfacts.com/lp.do?sk=E86162CE6C8F993BBCB4C6A79181B941B16D67B72AC5CB50&EV=2

 

 

Ken

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Now listed as "Lake Shore Limited/Capitol Limited Sleeping Car Menu" on the individual train's web page. Coach passengers be damned!

 

ETA: Just noticed the email to the "VP of Customer Service" (if such a position even exists) has been removed.

 

It was previously listed as the “Sleeping Car Menu”. However, the taken down menus were separate for the two routes - it was the “Lake Shore Limited Sleeping Car Menu” and the “Capitol Limited Sleeping Car Menu”. They were still the same, but titled for the individual routes. Seems like the only differences are the name change and the lack of a “VP of Customer Experience”. I guess he/she got so much hate that Amtrak figured they would give the person a break and just let angry passengers fume on their own.

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I really wonder if that person ever existed. I feel like he/she was probably just a computer program writing automatic responses, with the occasional actual response from some low level employee. It just struck me as a made-up title, sending back fake responses.

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Since Customer Experience has been reduced to zero, who needs a VP for it?

I've had a great customer experience on the empire builder with boxed dinners being delivered to my room by my SCA.

 

I've had a very poor customer experience on the coast starlight in the Parlour car when the LSA was apparently annoyed that anyone wanted to ️dine in that car.

Edited by crescent-zephyr

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Since Customer Experience has been reduced to zero, who needs a VP for it?

I've had a great customer experience on the empire builder with boxed dinners being delivered to my room by my SCA.

 

I've had a very poor customer experience on the coast starlight in the Parlour car when the LSA was apparently annoyed that anyone wanted to ️done in that car.

 

Sorry, did you mean dine?

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I sent a suggestion about adding hot meals to that email address when the menu first went up on the site. Never received any type of response.

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Since Customer Experience has been reduced to zero, who needs a VP for it?

The strangest thing about this is that it not only eliminates jobs but hurts those that contribute the highest per mile revenue to the service. This move is an abomination. Instead of trying to attract people to purchase the high priced sleeper tickets, they respond with a cheap crappy boxed lunch for a 20+ hr trip. IMO, that boxed lunch offers little incentive to selling more premium priced tickets. If this holds, we will no longer ride and will take to the road again where we can enjoy a decent dinner like civilized people..

Write people and keep writing. Keep the pressure on. Let your voice be heard.

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I am a letter write, and have been composing letters in my head since returning from a cross country trip a few weeks ago. One is not supposed to use strong, objectionable language in. Business letter, and am having trouble finding the appropriate words.

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Labeling the packages is different than providing the list in advance which would be much more useful in planning. The Lesley agreement, which is most commonly cited in college settings is different than the Amtrak scenario because it emanated from a school where the meal plan was mandatory for freshman. The students were obligated to pay for a service they might not be able to use, If I put ingredients on a package, it doesn't give you the opportunity to make alternate arrangements.

The food I had on the train yesterday had extensive ingredient lists, but the problems with combined ingredients don't go away. There needs to be a simple easy resource to help people.

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Since Customer Experience has been reduced to zero, who needs a VP for it?

I've had a very poor customer experience on the coast starlight in the Parlour car when the LSA was apparently annoyed that anyone wanted to ️dine in that car.

My "premium" cold sandwich lunch in the PPC had the taste and texture of stale leftovers from the previous night. Apparently the EB has better cold meals but it seems doubtful that specific supplier will be involved in these particular routes. I still think the sleeper fare should be lowered to split the discount between seller and buyer. For me Amtrak's decision to leave their sleeper refund penalties fully intact during the transition period was a bad omen. If they had any confidence in their own sales pitch you'd think they'd be willing to show some good faith effort to give people a choice in Guinea pig duty.

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I don't think anyone is a guinea pig or test subject. Rather, this is a permanent change with no intent to reversing the decision. Expect to see burnt bridges behind this decision so no one can go back. No facts, just a gut feeling how all the pieces are fitting together.

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Airlines believe they hold ALL the cards. Forbes has an article this week about how American is retrofitting its entire 737 fleet with just two bathrooms, that are the new "mini" 24" width where you can not turn or wash both hands at the same time. Plus when they make this "upgrade" that are increasing the number of seats from 160 to 172. American has such a high percentage of seats sold, management isn't afraid to "squeeze"even more out of the traveling public. Anderson comes from this mentality of Airline executives.

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For all I know, Mr. Anderson may be a very nice man who rescues stray animals and lets people with just a couple of items go ahead of him in the grocery line.

 

But he is just not a good fit for Amtrak. To be fair, he may not have realized this when he took the job.

 

I'm sure he is not used to passengers who speak up.

 

I don't know what airline unions are like, but he doesn't seem to have seen the Amtrak union backlash coming.

 

And the spokespeople seem to be caught off guard as well--if Marc M. has to resort to saying that passengers always could ask for food to be brought to their rooms (which has nothing to do with the current changes in the meal service), he's grasping at straws, I think, in an attempt to divert attention from the real issue.

Edited by Mystic River Dragon

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