In a first for the UK rail industry, London North Eastern Railway (LNER) will begin trials of an ‘at-seat’ catering offer onboard trains this August. The service will enable customers to order and pay for food and drinks from their phone in the comfort of their own seat, without having to visit the onboard cafe bar.
The digital in-seat app ‘Let’s Eat – At Your Seat’ will be available to customers in both Standard and First Class.
The service will also provide a layer of confidence and reassurance to customers who are looking to stay seated for the duration of their journey.
Let’s Eat – At Your Seat will offer customers on LNER trains a more enhanced, personalised customer service, with the added benefit of being more convenient for those who do not wish to leave their seat and possessions unattended. The ‘at-seat’ service also addresses the 40 per cent* of UK consumers who want to access digital ordering and payment technology to minimise physical contact and support social distancing measures.
Richard Judge, Head of Catering at LNER said: “We are always looking for new ways to provide excellence in our customer experience onboard and this new ‘at-seat’ service will allow us to extend our food and drink offer to customers from the comfort of their own seat
“Customers in both standard and first class will be able to browse the menu in their own time and order at their own convenience, enhancing their onboard experience and improving their journey with us.”
Let’s Eat – At Your Seat was developed by QikServe, and is the first project to come out of the LNER FutureLabs accelerator programme, which is fast tracking the development of digital projects to improve customer journeys in the rail industry.
Dan Rodgers, Founder and President at QikServe said: “As part of LNER’s FutureLabs Programme, we’re delighted to be the first to deliver Let’s Eat – At Your Seat for a personalised food and drinks offering on LNER train services.
“People are accustomed to ordering food and drinks whenever they want on their phone, so why not on a train too? It has been a privilege working with the team at LNER to create technology that puts the customer at the heart of their service by allowing them to order refreshments when they want.”
With the UK Government advising food retailers to provide contactless solutions to support the economy, Let’s Eat – At Your Seat will allow customers to access the ordering platform through a QR code scan, without the need to download another app.
Developed for use on LNER trains, the Standard Class menu offers a wide range of drinks, snacks, sandwiches and breakfast items. The First Class menu offers extra meals including LNER breakfasts, hot meals and an extended drinks service.
The trial will commence in August, with plans to roll out the offering across the fleet later in 2020.