Catering and onboard services
What food and drink options are on board?
If the train you’re traveling on offers a bar-buffet car, you’re free to walk in, sit down and eat. Or as soon as the restaurant car opens, make a reservation for any time of day.
On many long distance trains there may be an attendant with a snack cart who travels from car to car.
Bar-buffet cars are a unique part of the train experience, where the quality of the food and wine can rival that of a gourmet restaurant. With the exception of Eurostar, special meal requests are not available. But typically, regular menu options are plentiful and usually cater to most taste buds or dietary restrictions.
If you travel with a Premier Class ticket, food and drinks are included and served at your seat or in the bar-buffet car.
On local trains there’s usually no catering. However, your own food and drinks can always be taken on board. Please make sure to follow the local law when considering taking alcoholic drinks on board any train.
How can I check to see if food is served on a particular train?
When you search for a train schedule, the results page will give you the opportunity to click on the train number. Once you do this, choose your class of service to view the “Meals & Concessions” offered on that train, in that class. Then you’ll know what you can expect.
Do restaurant cars cater to specific dietary needs like vegetarian, diabetic or kosher?
Some European trains do offer special menu items. You can check the menu card found on board the train when you get on. Please keep in mind that you are also permitted to bring food on to the train, so if you have a specific dietary condition that requires special food, you can purchase before getting on the train and avoid any disappointment if the train you are on does not cater to your specific needs.
On Eurostar a wide variety of meals can be arranged prior to your North American departure. They include vegetarian, kosher, halal, vegan, diabetic, low fat, low salt and gluten-free meals. For vegetarian meals, we require 24-hours notice in advance of travel. For all other meals we require 48-hours advance notice. If you are traveling on Eurostar and need to submit a special meal request, please visit our Eurostar pages and complete the special request form. Please note that Eurostar cannot guarantee to be able to meet all special dietary requirements and will advise if this is the case.
Do I need to tip the train staff?
No, you don’t. Tipping the train staff (other than bar-buffet car waiters) is neither necessary nor customary.
Can I bring food and drinks on board?
Of course you can! Eating and drinking are permitted on all European trains.
If you travel with a Premier class ticket, food and drinks are included and served to you at your seat or at the bar-buffet car.
If you are traveling in Economy or Comfort class you may want to stop by a local deli, grocery store and/or bakery and pick up a small variety of snacks and food. You can have an authentically unique treat that you create all on your own.
You will also have the option to purchase food and drinks if the train you’re traveling on offers them.
Is there onboard medical help in case of emergency?
Currently most trains do not carry emergency medical equipment. In case of a medical emergency, conductors on board will radio ahead to the next stop so that help will be ready and waiting.