Posts Tagged ‘Amtrak business class’

Travelers Can Bid for Amtrak Business Class Seats

February 26, 2021

Amtrak has rolled out a new website page called “BidUp” to give passengers holding coach tickets an opportunity to bid for an upgrade to business class.

The site (https://www.amtrak.com/BidUp) enables passengers to bid on an upgrade up to two hours before departure.

There is no fee for bidding and the site contains pointers on how to increase the chances of submitting a winning bid.

The advantage of the bid option is the prospect of landing a business class seat at less than the advertised price if a passenger were to buy it upfront when making a reservation.

This could particularly be the case on days in which normal sales of business class seats are light.

That is less likely to be the case with Midwest corridor trains in which business class often sells out and availability is smaller to begin with.

Some trains, particularly in the Northeast Corridor, carry cars in which all of the seating is in business class.

Assigned Seating Set For NE Regional Business Class

October 30, 2019

Starting in January passengers will be able to choose their preferred seat aboard business class sections of Northeast Regional trains.

In a news release, Amtrak said the service will allow families, friends and colleagues to sit together.

Seat assignment in business class on Northeast Regional trains will begin on trains departing on or after Jan. 11.

A similar program has been has been in operation for Acela first class passengers since February 2018.

Amtrak said that seats are automatically assigned when a passenger makes a reservation.

To select a preferred seat, a passenger can change their assigned seat at any time before boarding via an interactive seat map on Amtrak’s mobile app, at Amtrak.com, or with a ticket agent.

There is no fee to choose or change a seat assignment.

Amtrak said it is considering adding seat assignment options on additional trains, but did not specify which ones.

Amtrak to End Business Class on 2 Trains

April 2, 2018

Amtrak plans to end business class service on two long-distance trains on May 1, the Auto Train and Crescent.

Amtrak said business class did not sell well on those trains and that adding a car to each train to accommodate it reduced the number of available coach seats.

Among the amenities that had been included with business class service were complimentary non-alcoholic beverages in the cafe car, full access to Washington Post and New York Times online content, priority boarding at larger stations, and extra Amtrak Guest Rewards points.

Business class on the Crescent had been provided by a regular coach positioned on the other side of the sleeping and dining cars from the coach section.

A Trains magazine report said that business class on the Auto Train had the effect of raising coach fares to the point where Amtrak was losing business, particularly with larger families.

Amtrak agents had to override the yield management system to lower the price of coach tickets. “Amtrak made the decision to discontinue business class because of insufficient differentiation between coach and business class on these two routes,” said Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari.

Magliari added that the passenger carrier is seeking to make service more consistent across the network.

LSL Resumes Chicago-Boston Cars

October 31, 2016

Through sleepers and coaches between Chicago and Boston on the Lake Shore Limited resumed operation last week after being absent for more than a year.

Amtrak Lake Shore LimitedAmtrak had instead operated a stub-end train between Boston and Albany-Rensselaer, New York, with passengers making an across-the-platform connection.

Through Boston cars were dropped during a track reconstruction program in Albany-Rensselaer.

The resumption of Boston through cars coincided with the introduction of business class service between Chicago and Boston.

That service is being provided in 2-1 seating in one end of the café car that operates between the two cities. Business class seating is not yet available between Chicago and New York on Nos. 48 and 49, but is offered on the Chicago-New York Cardinal via Cincinnati and Indianapolis.

Food service between New York and Albany-Rensselaer is being provided by an Amfleet II “diner-lite” car.

LSL Getting Business Class Service

October 22, 2016

Business class will be offered aboard Amtrak’s Lake Shore Limited starting on Oct. 24.

Amtrak Lake Shore LimitedThe service will be available between Chicago and Albany-Rensselaer and Boston. Amtrak said passengers in business class will have reserved seating in car dedicated to business class.

Other amenities for business class passengers will include complimentary coffee, tea and other non-alcoholic beverages; access to digital newspapers on AmtrakConnect; Amtrak Guest Rewards® Business Class bonus points; access to Chicago Union Station’s Metropolitan Lounge; and a fully refundable ticket if canceled prior to departure.

The service will begin with Train 48/448 originating in Chicago on Oct. 24 and on Train 49/449 originating at Boston and Albany-Rensselaer on Oct. 26.

The service is not available between New York and Albany-Rensselaer.

Business Class Being Added to the Cardinal

January 11, 2016

Amtrak is inaugurating business class service on the Chicago-New York Cardinal. The service begins Jan. 19 on No. 50 and on Jan. 20 on No. 51. Amtrak said business class passengers will receive the following amenities:

  • Reserved seating in a car for business class passengers only
  • Complimentary non-alcoholic beverages
  • Comfortable spacious leather seats
  • Complimentary access to the Metropolitan Lounge at Chicago Union Station
  • Complementary Wi-Fi and unlimited access to The New York Times and Washington Post digital newspapers in Wi-Fi coverage areas along the route
  • An access pass for Philadelphia’s ClubAcela for $20 per day