Irish Rail says on-board catering services are unlikely to return until 2023 at the earliest

There will be NO in-flight catering services on Irish Rail intercity services until 2023 at the earliest, the company has announced.

In a statement, Irish Rail said it had been unable to tender a new contract with catering provider RailGourmet, which provided snacks, coffees and a tram service on intercity journeys.

“This is despite great efforts by both Iarnród Éireann and RailGourmet to have on-board catering services resume, following their enforced two-year absence from the pandemic,” the statement said.

“We will quickly start the bidding process for a new catering contract. However, this will mean that catering services are unlikely to be available on board until at least early 2023.”

Irish Rail’s in-flight catering service was suspended at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, and since face covering regulations were lifted in February, staffing issues and significant additional costs meant RailGourmet was unable to resume services.

“We sincerely apologize to customers who will be affected by this and look forward to returning inflight catering to them as soon as we can,” the statement added.

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Irish Rail highlighted that many intercity stations have existing retail and catering facilities, and said it will work “to further improve” these for customers where possible.

Catering services on the Dublin-Belfast route, under a separate contract with Corporate Catering Services Ltd, continue to operate on a limited basis.

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