Is it safe to consume food on Indian Railways?

All aboard the Indian Railways, a vast network that connects towns, cities, and people across this diverse and vibrant country. As you journey through breathtaking landscapes and soak in the charm of train travel, one question may cross your mind – is it safe to consume food on Indian Railways?

Food services on trains have been an integral part of the railway experience for decades. From piping hot chai served in clay cups to delectable regional delicacies delivered right to your seat, there’s something undeniably enticing about dining on wheels. However, over the years, concerns about food

In this blog post, we’ll delve into the truth behind these controversies and provide you with practical tips for safe and healthy eating while travelling by train. So sit back, relax (and be hungry), as we embark on this gastronomic adventure together!

Controversies Surrounding Food Quality on Trains

Controversies surrounding food quality on trains have been a subject of concern for many passengers travelling on Indian Railways. There have been numerous complaints about the taste, online food order in train, hygiene, and overall quality of the meals served onboard.

One of the major issues that arise is the lack of proper storage facilities for perishable items such as fruits and vegetables. This often leads to them being stale or rotten by the time they reach passengers’ plates. Additionally, there have been instances where unhygienic conditions in railway kitchens have resulted in contaminated food being served to unsuspecting travellers.

Another common complaint is regarding overcharging for meals. Many passengers feel that they are paying exorbitant prices for subpar food, making them question whether it’s worth it to purchase meals from the train pantry at all.

To address these concerns, Indian Railways has implemented measures such as regular inspections of pantry cars and strict adherence to hygiene standards. They have also introduced e-catering services which allow passengers to order food from reputable restaurants at select stations along their journey.

While these initiatives are a step in the right direction, it is still advisable for passengers to take certain precautions when consuming food on trains. It is recommended to opt for packaged snacks or pre-packaged meals whenever possible, as they are less likely to be compromised in terms of quality and hygiene.

While controversies surrounding food quality on trains do exist, efforts are being made by Indian Railways to improve the situation. By taking some precautions and making informed choices about what you eat onboard, you can enjoy a safe and satisfactory dining experience during your train journey.

Tips for safe and healthy eating on trains

  • Pack your own food: One of the best ways to ensure safe and healthy eating on trains is by packing your own meals and snacks. This way, you have control over the ingredients and can avoid any potential food safety issues.
  • Opt for sealed packaged foods: If you’re unable to pack your own food, look for sealed packaged options like chips, cookies, or granola bars. These items are less likely to be contaminated compared to open or homemade foods.
  • Choose hot meals from reputable vendors: If you prefer buying meals from onboard vendors, opt for hot dishes that are cooked right in front of you. This reduces the chances of contamination as high temperatures kill bacteria.
  • Check the hygiene of water sources: It’s important to stay hydrated during train journeys, but be cautious about drinking tap water directly from the train’s washroom or pantry area. Instead, opt for bottled water or carry a personal water purifier.
  • Stick to vegetarian options: Vegetarian meals tend to have a lower risk of contamination compared to non-vegetarian ones because they don’t involve animal products that spoil quickly without proper refrigeration.
  • Read customer reviews beforehand: Before boarding a train, it can be helpful to read reviews about specific food vendors at various stations along your route. This will give you an idea about their quality and hygiene standards.

Customer Reviews and Experiences with Railway Food

While there have been controversies surrounding the quality of food on Indian Railways, it’s important to note that not all experiences are negative. Many passengers have had satisfactory meals during their train journeys.

Numerous customers have appreciated the variety of options available on trains, ranging from regional delicacies to popular fast food items. Some have even praised the taste and hygiene standards of certain dishes. These positive reviews indicate that it is possible to enjoy a safe and delicious meal while travelling by train.

However, there are also instances where passengers have faced issues with railway food. Complaints about unhygienic conditions, stale or cold meals, check pnr status and inadequate portion sizes do exist. It’s essential to acknowledge these concerns and take necessary precautions when opting for onboard dining.

Tips for Safe and Healthy Eating on Trains

To ensure a pleasant dining experience while travelling on Indian Railways, here are some tips:

  • Carry your own snacks: Packing some dry fruits, nuts, or pre-packaged snacks can be handy during long train journeys.
  • Opt for packed meals: Many vendors offer packed meals in sealed containers that can minimize the risk of contamination.
  • Choose reliable vendors: Look for reputable food providers who prioritize hygiene standards and customer satisfaction.
  • Check online reviews: Before ordering from a particular vendor or restaurant onboard, consider checking online reviews to get an idea about their service quality.
  • Observe cleanliness practices: If you choose to eat at the onboard pantry car or order from local vendors at stations, make sure they maintain proper cleanliness practices such as wearing gloves while handling food.


When it comes to consuming food on Indian Railways, exercising caution is crucial but not every passenger has encountered problems with railway food either. By being aware of potential risks and following our tips for safe eating habits while travelling by train in India. You can maximize your chances of enjoying a tasty meal without compromising on your health and well-being.

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