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No onboard catering on intercity trains until 2023


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,121 ✭✭✭✭whisky_galore

    Maybe pay people a decent wage and treat them right, but what would I know?,23.htm

  • Registered Users Posts: 19,052 ✭✭✭✭road_high

    That include the trolley tea/coffee service? Shame

  • Registered Users Posts: 28,553 ✭✭✭✭end of the road

    i would say they will just end up abolishing it altogether, as pointed out it's low margine and i'm sure other potential operators will have been looking at things and why the existing operator has handed back the contract.

    as well as that prices are high to the consumer and wages are a pittence meaning staff are going to be hard to come by.

    Protect the rights of the alcohol enjoyers of ireland. Remove all funding from alcohol action ireland now!

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,453 ✭✭✭sam t smith

    Stick a few vending machines on the trains.

    Soft drinks, crips, chocolate bars, hang sambos etc.

  • Registered Users Posts: 402 ✭✭lordleitrim

    I thought the same thing. Probably wouldn't be allowed to have machines serve hot drinks when they trains wobble.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,416 ✭✭✭Economics101

    Time for some joined-up thinking. One of the Intercity train's main advantages is greater passenger comfort, including toilet and catering facilities. as well as more personal space. Providing these helps attract more passengers. Much the same with station carparking charges: at times these can be a disincentive to use the train, so what the carparking people make may be offset by loss of passenger revenue.

    You have to make the offering attractive, especially if you hope to get car-owners to use the railway.

  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 64,893 Mod ✭✭✭✭L1011

    The high speed trains on the Galician HSR have this - in the bicycle storage / toilets area in the middle of the train.

    Problem here is that the same 22000s that do long distance routes may end up pootling between M3 Parkway and Clonsilla for a weekend so you couldn't load anything fresh and expect it to sell before going off. So you're limited to crisps/bars/those long life pastries for the food side.

  • Registered Users Posts: 78,962 ✭✭✭✭Atlantic Dawn

    Would need to be all modernised with pre-ordering available prior to your journey and ordering available via smartphone from your seat.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 15,121 ✭✭✭✭whisky_galore

    People aren't going to come flocking to jobs with long hours, putting up with crap from the great unwashed, working side by side with IE staff on better wages and conditions and on top of all that pushing a great big heavy trolley on a rocking train. Those days are gone.

    There's far better jobs to be had with less hassle out there.

  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 64,893 Mod ✭✭✭✭L1011

    You'd need to actually work out value for that. e.g. bundle a coffee with the ticket price (or higher band tickets, etc), but that part of the price goes to the catering budget

    No modern accounting standard is going to let you run something at a dead loss on the assumption that it might be making money for a different part of the company

    Most IE stations with paid parking have exceptionally limited capacity so there is nobody else to attract to the service by making parking free. Its very cheap for long term users, better to have it so that they can park and ride rather than capture occasional single journeys and have those users go back to driving daily.

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,618 ✭✭✭✭Jamie2k9

    Passenger volumes are currently around 63% of pre pandomic levels. Evenn if staffing wasn't a problem I don't think catering would be viable hence the long delay into 2023.

    The level of demand just isn't there, many peak hour intercity services are sparsely loaded and a catering trolly would make nothing.

    The few OAPs purchasing tea can do it at the station or bing a flask :)

    I can't even see how they could return full catering in 2023 and the business work unless passegner traffic significantly recovers. If the 63% was split out I think it would paint an every worse reading of IC traffic. I think limited catering might the first part of the return in 2023.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,622 ✭✭✭✭Del2005

    When train stations become like airports then the trains might be able to make money on catering. Getting food and water into an airport is a hassle and the shops airside aren't much cheaper than the plane. Getting food and water onto a train is easy, there are plenty of cheap options for passengers.

  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,835 Mod ✭✭✭✭bk

    And yet the catering services always seemed busy and popular in the past.

    Also nothing stopping you bringing food to the airport, only liquids are prohibited. And of course nothing stopping you buying both food and drink in the many outlets in the terminal before boarding a flight, yet onboard catering is still very popular and profitable on aircraft.

  • Registered Users Posts: 294 ✭✭TranslatorPS

    Which brings into question what business categories are IÉ allowed to work with to begin with, be it by their own statute or other limitations as part of the CIÉ group. Nonetheless, I think it says something when the tallest tower in the world, the 634 m-tall Tokyo Skytree, was funded and built by what is primarily a railway company.

    (A lot of Japanese railway companies also operate bus networks, usually feeding into their own railways, but obviously that aspect of their operations is moot in Ireland with the bus operations having been separated out back in 1987 to begin with.)

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,546 ✭✭✭✭Geuze

    If the prices are higher than off the train, and the wages aren't high, then how or why are the margins low?

  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 64,893 Mod ✭✭✭✭L1011

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,687 ✭✭✭✭Losty Dublin

    1) Ryanair passengers often spend longer in queues getting onto Ryanair flights than they do on the flights themselves, so they have less time to avail of concession food and thus are an easier target for food sales. Indeed cafes and coffee docks aren't always available at some of the destinations and/or times that they run flights at. Irish Rail passengers often arrive moments before departure so there's less of a window for selling to them; yet they still purchase wares. Also, airline staff who sell on board have to be there anyway unlike catering staff on a train, which is an extra cost to add.

    2) Of course, it's easier for Japanese railway to make use of mixed modal property use when it has about 60 times the population of Ireland, a premium on urban space in it's cities, a grá for building up and over and no Bord Planalá to contend with :-)

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  • Registered Users Posts: 6,035 ✭✭✭Hilly Bill

    They had no work for 2 years and some of their staff got the CSO jobs. I think one of them is on here.