Amtrak vows to end concession losses in five years

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“We have made steady and consistent progress, but it is time we commit ourselves to end food and beverage losses once and for all,” Boardman said in a statement. “Our plan will expand initiatives that have worked, add new elements and evolve as updated information and opportunities lead us to better solutions.”

Boardman said Amtrak’s annual losses on concessions had been reduced by $31 million in recent years, going from $105 million in 2006 to $74 million this year.

The company said it would reduce the losses further by moving operations and accountability for food and beverage in to a single department.

“This new organization also establishes a long-distance services general manager and route directors responsible for profit and loss of specific trains who will identify opportunities for further cost savings and efficiencies,” Amtrak said.

Boardman said Amtrak would also move to a cashless payment system in 2004, which he said would streamline concession sales and reduce the potential for fraud.

Citing increases in ridership and on-time performance, Boardman said he was optimistic the concession sale changes would also be effective.

"I am confident Amtrak will succeed in this effort just as we have in other areas and across a wide range of financial and operating performance metrics,” he said.