An Experiment Worth Trying.
Amtrak’s train, the Adirondack, is a great ride. It runs daily between New York’s Penn Station and Gare Centrale in Montreal. And because today’s topic is food, I cannot resist noting that a fabulous bakery is located right there in the station. Bienvenue!
The trip takes about 11 hours and if you’re looking for a great train ride—a day trip that takes you through wonderful, scenic countryside and ends up in the second largest French-speaking city in the world—you have found it! Any time of year is wonderful, but in the Fall, at the height of the colors? Well, It can’t be topped.
Of course people get hungry after four or five hours and, as noted, it is an 11-hour ride and, wonderful scenery or not, one would think Amtrak could arrange for better food and better service. But no, it’s like everything else: cut corners to cut costs. The fact is, this train could use a full-on dining car.
As it is, one person trying to serve all those people over nearly a 12-hour ride results in scenes like the photo above. Imagine how nice it would be to have an actual dining car on that train, fully staffed, so you could go into the dinner sit at a table, and order a slice of apple pie and a cup of coffee. Then come back three hours later and order a sandwich and a Molson’s Canadian.
Would it work? Would food service on that train break even or come close to it? Can’t say. Would it make those 11 hours more pleasant? Absolutely. Would the resulting word-of-mouth result in increased ridership? I would bet on it.
Would the current Amtrak management undertake such a move . . . if only to prove us wrong?
Ah … that could be a temptation those fellas would be unable to resist!