Avanti West Coast is introducing a Standard Premium class – between the usual First and Standard services – on its West Coast Main Line Pendolino services, which run through the region, from Wigan to Preston and Lancaster.
According to Avanti West Coast bosses, Standard Premium customers will enjoy roomier seats, greater space and a guaranteed table.
They will also have the option to purchase refreshments via a new ‘At-Seat Order’ feature, where customers can have items delivered to them without moving from their seat.
The new class will initially be available to buy as an upgrade on the day of travel, with advance purchase tickets on sale from July for travel from September.
As part of further improvements, Avanti West Coast will launch an enhanced First Class offering with improved catering and more bespoke customer service later this year, with the enhanced service available seven days a week. Work is also due to start next month to fully refurbish the entire Pendolino fleet of 56 trains as part of a £117m deal signed with Alstom who maintain the operator’s fleet.
In addition, one carriage on all 11 coach Pendolinos (the existing Coach G), will be converted from First to Standard, increasing each train’s seating capacity by five per cent. The first refurbished set is due to enter service in November 2021.
Phil Whittingham, manager director at Avanti West Coast said: “This is the first major step in our transformation of services on the West Coast. Together with our upcoming First Class service which will lead the industry, and the complete refurbishment of the Pendolino fleet, Standard Premium will set a new benchmark for UK rail travel.
“Our new class of travel will offer greater choice and provide a unique offer which meets customers’ changing needs as they return to rail. This new feature is another step in raising the bar for excellence on the railway.”
Support us and become a subscriber today. Enjoy unlimited access to local news, the latest football stories and new puzzles every day. With a digital subscription, you can see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content. Click here to subscribe.