• A Service Horror Story

  • Tell us where you were and what you saw!
Tell us where you were and what you saw!

Moderator: David Benton

  by Henry Kisor
The last time my wife and I rode No. 8 from Seattle to Chicago, I booked very early and got Roomette 2 in the Seattle sleeper.

But when we boarded, the attendant -- one of those flippant, annoying young women who calls everybody "you guys" -- told us she had moved us to Roomette 10 (a much less desirable room, because it's at the end of the car over the trucks) because there was a toilet smell in Roomette 2.

She had set up Roomette 2 as the service room, with ice and drinks and munchies, for the car. (She was in Roomette 1 herself across the aisle.) There was no toilet smell.

Her service was terrible. After waiting 40 minutes I made up the beds myself. Did the same thing the second night.

Several times my wife heard her whine to another passenger that she wasn't feeling well. But her cheerful chattiness with train crew, especially at the smoking stops, belied that.

I planned to complain to Amtrak management about her when we reached Chicago, but the whole thing slipped my mind. I guess I am just too tolerant a fellow.

But in retrospect I regret not having filed the complaint. I wonder how many other passengers have suffered under her attitude that the sleeping car should be set up for HER benefit and not for the passengers'.

At the very least I should have spoken with the conductor. I think he might have agreed that we should not have been moved out of our contracted roomette. Sure, the attendant probably would have been so angered she would not have given us good service, but she didn't do that anyway.

The moral of this story: If you feel that you have not been given good service, COMPLAIN.

  by John_Perkowski
Amtrak Forum Moderator's Note:

Split from the Roomette xx, Cay YY on the Chief thread.

  by David Benton
Well , Henry , we all do that sometimes , be it complain or praise .

seems taking a service room and an attendants room out of each car is alot of revenue space going to waste . One wonders if ti cant be shared amongst 2 cars .

  by icgsteve
I've got a better one:

In nov on the CS, we got on at Oakland. I wanted to get on the train as it was cold and rainy but the attendant decided he needed to pull the ticket on the platform. He then noticed that it was not signed so I had to put the bags down, hunt for a pen, sign it, so that we could board. Why we could not deal with this onboard I did not ask, but I assumed that it would be too much trouble for him to come and find us. It was just before 9pm so imagine my surprise that the room had already been put down. So now I had to put the room up before we could sit down. I never saw him again until the next evening when we got off. I had wanted to see him about half hour before we arrived at our stop, I wanted to see if he was going to open the door or if we should make other arrangements. Just as we are coming in he pops by and says that he will meet us downstairs. I asked him why he did not respond to the page over the last half hour and his response was "I was having my dinner".

  by Henry Kisor
I should have added that most of the time on the LD runs I've found the sleeper attendants to be more than competent. Some -- like the storied Heath brothers -- are nonpareil. The real dogs are very few -- but those are the ones infrequent travelers tend to get and remember.

  by Murjax
I've always found the crew on the Silver Service trains to be very helpful and pleasent. They are even better on the Regionals. I don't know what is going on with the other trains or if these are just rare isolated incidents but the crew should be much better than what I've heard in these stories.