They say don’t s*** where you eat, but in this case you have no choice.
I was scrolling Twitter earlier this week when I came across a viral tweet from American Fiester (@AmericanFietster) who pointed out the disgusting fact that certain Amtrak Roomettes have their toilet right next to the roomette seats with no separation whatsoever.
That’s right, without warning you can literally drop trou and lay a stinky loaf right in front of your roomette mate and, until they decide to just up and leave, there’s nothing they can do about it.
Here’s @AmericanFietster’s tweet below.
Sooo, does anyone else find it disgusting that Amtrak has an open air toilet in their roomettes or is it just me?— American Fietser (@AmericanFietser) November 13, 2023
I just don't love the idea of traveling across the country in a room where people have dropped their pants and done various business… pic.twitter.com/tWy7CqCh2Q
Amtrak offers overnight accommodations including the aforementioned Roomettes including larger bedrooms and suites.
Not all roomettes have in-room toilets. According to Amtrak,
“Roomettes on our viewliner trains are equipped with a toilet in the room.”
So, that means roomettes on their more popular Superliner Routes don’t come with a toilet, fortunately or unfortunately, depending on how you look at it.
This video from The Elevator Channel gives a full tour of a roomette with a toilet.
“There’s actually a toilet in this little room. This would be super awkward if you are sharing it with someone else, but I guess it’s nice and private when you’re on your own.”
And here’s what bathrooms look like in the slightly more spacious and expensive bedroom thanks to Grounded Life Travel. As you can see, while spartan, there’s a separate toilet and shower space.
Why is this kind of disgusting?
Despite the obvious smells and sounds you can imagine with #1s and #2s, it’s become widely known as of late, thanks to research, that fecal particles become airborne when you flush to a far greater extent than we initially imagined.
Here’s a demo using lasers from the University of Colorado showing the aerosolization of said particles when flushing a standard toilet.
You can, as the videos show, close the toilet bowl before flushing to minimize….particle splatter, but then you’d be forced to look at your creation, and the step then becomes contaminated with your lunch DNA.
In reality, if you were to share a roomette with someone and needed to take a #2, it’d be awkward, but you’d probably ask that person to step out of the room for a couple of minutes while you handle your business.
But, if you’re with someone you’re comfortable with, like your partner of several years and with their consent, you can technically take the Browns to the Superbowl right in front of them.
And they, in turn, can return the favor.
Despite mine or your presumed acceptance of this Amtrak feature, the replies in the thread were certainly not so nice.
Yeah that's foul… if a toilet flushes in it, it's a bathroom, and I don't want to stay in there all day.— daeveningglow (@InlandCaGuy) November 13, 2023
America is not a first world country exhibit gazillion— Bret Wolfe (@DecliningUS) November 14, 2023
I always wondered why they do this.— Emuricdo (@Emuricdo) November 14, 2023
Shared toilets at the ends of the cars would be more hygienic and cheaper to maintain.
If I was traveling alone in a roomette, this is a welcome feature, but, if I was travelling with someone, I’d feel awkward as heck doing a #1 in full view, let alone a whole #2.
Do you think this in-roomette toilets are disgusting?
Let me know your .02 in the comments below.