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First -v- standard class on East Coast

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Edinburgh, Scotland
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688 posts
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First -v- standard class on East Coast

I am looking to book the train down to Stevenage. Has anyone travelled in first class since they have changed it and you now get a meal in first class? What is it like?

Edinburgh
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490 posts
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1. Re: First -v- standard class on East Coast

The 'meal' is pretty basic. There was only one hot dish - a vegetarian cottage pie (which was actually OK), so nothing like the range and quality you used to get on GNER. Apart from that, there were sandwiches and cakes. Also, in First Class the tea, coffee, wine, beer and some spirits (they didn't have Bacardi!) are complimentary.

Edited: 7:54 am, January 09, 2012
Edinburgh, Scotland
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688 posts
13 reviews
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2. Re: First -v- standard class on East Coast

Do you still have to go to the cafe bar for your meal and drinks then or is it brought to you?

London, England
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3. Re: First -v- standard class on East Coast

I've only travelled at the weekend and they regularly bring the trolley along.

I believe they serve the hot food to the table.

Personally I believe First is worth it as long as you get it at a reasonable cost.

Fife, United Kingdom
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for St. Andrews
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4. Re: First -v- standard class on East Coast

I travelled East coast First Class from Leeds to Aviemore in June and the service was SO good that I actually wrote a letter to the company praising them. I was travelling alone so had a single seat beside the window. The seat reclines (bliss!) and the carriage was very quiet and well upholstered. I was offered tea/coffee/sandwiches/alcoholic and soft drinks and a hot meal during my journey. The alcohol included spirits inc. whisky, gin and vodka, red and white wine, beer etc. The tea and coffe was served with biscuits and cake and the sandwichwes were very tasty. I didn't have the hot meal because I was full up by the time it came round but looking at what my fellow passengers had it seemed OK and there were 3 choices I think. Everything is served to you, you don't have to leave your seat at all. if you can get a decent price its worth it. I believe you can also upgrade from Standard to First at the weekends for not very much money.

I also travel First down to Edinburgh from Aviemore on the Over 55 ticket whenever I can and because its the London train the service and food is excellent (also East Coast) They do fab bacon sandwiches and tea and coffee almost on tap. Go for it!!

Woody x

Edited: 10:12 am, January 09, 2012
New York City, New...
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3 posts
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5. Re: First -v- standard class on East Coast

This reply may be a little delayed, but I am currently on the first class train to london kings x from Edinburgh, and I am appalled at this sad excuse for first. Now I'm not the fussiest of travellers. A smile from staff can go a long way with me. But when I first attempted to board, the staff told me there was no room for my suitcase. I don't believe this is my problem? They eventually just put it somewhere, after looking like they weren't even going to help me with it. They also looked annoyed that I was taking long to put my hand luggage in the overhead, and didn't even help me. The bathroom was filthy and the food was pretty terrible. Save your money and buy some clothes instead!!

Fife, United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for St. Andrews
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8,675 posts
160 reviews
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6. Re: First -v- standard class on East Coast

Oh dear - perhaps a quick email to the train company may make things better for the next traveller? Inexcusable.

W x

Stirling, United...
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for Stirling
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13,502 posts
7 reviews
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7. Re: First -v- standard class on East Coast

I'd phone customer services there and then - and watch the service magically improve 20 mins later after they've phoned the on-train manglement.

Farnham, United...
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2 posts
25 reviews
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8. Re: First -v- standard class on East Coast

My 91 year old mother-in-law has just travelled first class from Durham to Kings Cross today. She was not impressed at all with the service. She found the carriage cold but when she mentioned she was cold to the attendant, the attendant helpfully said how warm it was in the adjoining coach!!! Then the coffee was lukewarm. Later tea was served. Again lukewarm. When tea was served at lunchtime with sandwiches, the attendant wanted to pour the tea into the dregs of the previous cup. When my MIL asked for a new cup she was told 'we can't give new cups out each time'. This is in First Class!!

She has traveled standard class many times and was able to walk to the buffet and have super hot drinks. How sad she found First Class such a disappointment.

Edited: 3:04 pm, December 22, 2012
Manchester, United...
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for The Hebrides
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9. Re: First -v- standard class on East Coast

Those East Coast carriages are a few decades old now, and the heating is notoriously variable between carriages. I suspect the conductor was trying to suggest that your mother could move into the next carriage, but maybe she didn't realise that.

Liverpool, United...
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for Liverpool
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10. Re: First -v- standard class on East Coast

"She has traveled standard class many times and was able to walk to the buffet and have super hot drinks."

First Class on East Coast trains (or any train company in the UK) isn't supposed to be the Orient-Express !!

I'd stick to standard class like the rest of us plebs. ;-)