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Washington Post: The end of an American tradition: The Amtrak dining car

Washington Post: The end of an American tradition: The Amtrak dining car

Old Jan 13, 20, 9:04 pm
  #76  
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Posts: 122
Originally Posted by dilanesp View Post
My guess is (1) the Acela is logistically far easier to cater, because it is a day train that runs through a bunch of heavy population centers, and (2) Acela FC ticket prices are a huge profit center, whereas long distance tickets are sold at a significant loss.
The fundamental economic problem for dining on the eastern long distance trains is that the schedules are too short to make up for the overnight hours when the diner is closed, even though it still incurs costs overnight. The LSL's diner was barely open longer than it was closed, and the same goes for the Capitol Limited. That increases the fixed cost allocation to the diner, which means that the menu prices are too outrageous to get coach pax to pay and allocating the costs to sleeper pax destroys the sleeper economics.

If anything, the long day trains (Vermonter, Carolinian, Pennsylvanian, Palmetto) could probably make a full diner work better than the overnight trains with shorter than 24 hour runtimes.
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Old Yesterday, 3:56 am
  #77  
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
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How about hot food delivered at every stop, ordered ahead of time from cooperating local restaurants?

Amtrak gets a percentage and distributes the delivered food to passengers.
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Old Yesterday, 6:40 am
  #78  
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
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Given Amtrak’s on time performance do you know how big of a logistical issue that would be?
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Last edited by Long Train Runnin; Yesterday at 9:35 am Reason: edited to remove colorful language
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Old Yesterday, 7:34 pm
  #79  
 
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Plus there would likely be state health department regulations about keeping food at a certain temperature from cooking to serving.
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Old Yesterday, 8:24 pm
  #80  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
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Ordering your own delivery could work if there's a scheduled stop.
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