If you’re taking a long train journey, then you’re bound to feel peckish. Plus, not every station has a plethora of shops to choose from. So, what’s your next option? Well, here are our five best train companies for Standard Class food on the move.
What are the best train companies for Standard Class food and drink?
We’re going to base this on how consistently you can get food and drink, and how convenient it is to order. We know that Transport for Wales have their Premier dining service, and Great Western Railway have their Pullman, but these are on a very limited number of trains. They’re great, but you can’t jump on board and get them every single time! So, who can you rely on?
It doesn’t get much more convenient than LNER when it comes to Standard Class food. All you need to do is scan the QR codes on the back of every seat:
From there, you can access the Let’s Eat at Your Seat menu. You can order hot and cold sandwiches, snacks and drinks. If you do fancy a stroll, then you can also visit the café bar on the train. From our experience, this will be available on every train for most of the journey.
Avanti West Coast
Avanti West Coast has a similarly extensive Standard Class food menu to LNER. However, you can’t have it delivered to your seat. Previously, this option was trialled, but it was often not available. You can click and collect instead now, but we don’t know how reliable this is. The good news is that you can just pop to the shop:
This would probably win the award for best buffet on a train, as you can actually see what’s on offer. The only negative is how far down the train you need to trek to reach it. The good news? It’s advertised on all services.
Grand Central will also allow you to choose from their menu, and then click and collect from the buffet. The menu isn’t huge (and you won’t know the sandwich fillings in advance) but you’ll find it on every train. Of course, you can just pop to the buffet as well.
The LumoEats service is worth mentioning, as it’s a pretty interesting concept. It’s available on every train, but with a few caveats.
Basically, you can pre-order your food from a number of different station outlets, and they’ll bring it to your seat. The price isn’t very different to going to the shop yourself, and it can be a big time saver. The only issue is that you need to be getting on the train in either Edinburgh or London. You’ll need to do it in advance, as well. That said, you can do it up to two hours before you travel.
Once you’re on the train, a trolley will also come through regularly with smaller snacks and drinks.
Finally, we have TransPennine Express. They don’t offer food and drink on every train all of the time, but they cover the bulk of the time period that you’d expect to be able to order it.
It’s advertised between 07:00 and 18:30 on weekdays, and 09:00 and 18:30 on weekends. You’ll find it between York/Leeds and Manchester on the Hull, Saltburn and Scarborough services, and Sheffield and Manchester on the Cleethorpes services. It’s available on the entire Newcastle to Edinburgh and Newcastle to Liverpool routes.
On trains between Edinburgh/Glasgow and Manchester Airport, you can get it on the entire route, all day long. As for the menu, it’s pretty much what you’d expect. You can choose from sandwiches, snacks and drinks. Just keep an eye out for the trolley!
Is there anything else I should know?
Feeling peckish? Looking to book a ticket and have a trip with some great Standard Class food? No problem. You can do it all with Railsmartr. We don’t charge any extra fees either, even if you just change your mind about your trip.
All information quoted is correct as of August 2023, is subject to change, and is issued without liability. Railsmartr is not responsible for any disappointment or loss incurred as a result of the information provided.