Acela Express Cafe Cars Introduce Wireless Processing of Credit Cards

WASHINGTON – Enjoying a quick bite to eat on the train is now even more convenient as Amtrak has introduced wireless electronic credit card processing terminals to complete credit card transactions in all Acela Express café cars.

Using the new devices, service attendants are now able to get instant authorizations from credit card companies. Previously, attendants needed to hand write ticket and passenger information on paper forms for credit card acceptance.

The processing terminals accept all major credit cards, and there are no minimum purchase requirements. For purchases under $25, receipts are issued only when requested by the customer. Currently, Amtrak customers who use a credit card to pay for food and beverages in café cars spend an average of $12 per purchase.

Some customers may have already taken advantage of this new payment system as part of a pilot project completed last month on board select Acela Express trains. During the pilot, use of the new electronic devices improved efficiency as most transactions were completed in 15 to 20 seconds.

“We know a number of our passengers – especially business travelers – don’t have time in their busy schedules for leisurely meals so they use their time on board to eat,” said Emmett Fremaux, vice president of customer service for Amtrak. “Using the credit card processing terminals will improve customer service by speeding transaction time and increasing the number of customers a service attendant may assist.”