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Meals, Seating and Medical Needs

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Special meal requests

We know that for specific medical conditions or other reasons you may require a special meal.

In the Québec City-Windsor corridor (southern Quebec and southern Ontario), travellers in Business class can be served special meals, provided that a 48-hour notice from first segment (first portion of the itinerary) is given. Please note that a special meal request may not be possible on all routes.

On the Canadian (Toronto-Vancouver), travellers in Sleeper Plus and Prestige classes can be served special meals provided that a 10-day advance notice is given.

On the Ocean (Montréal-Halifax), travellers in Sleeper Plus class can be served special meals, provided that a 72 hour advance notice is given.

On the Winnipeg-Churchill route, travellers in Sleeper Plus class can be served vegetarian meals, provided that a 10-day advance notice is given.

Special meals are not available in Economy and Touring class. Passengers can inform on-board VIA personnel of their special needs. When possible, the crew will do their best to meet your request.

Consult our allergy policy if you suffer from an allergy, and specific measures can and must be taken by VIA Rail to minimize your risk of exposure to a specific allergen.

Here are the special meals that can be ordered in advance:

Special meals Corridor
(48-hour advance notice)

Sleeper Plus class
(72 hour advance notice)

Sleeper Plus & Prestige class
(10-day advance notice)
Sleeper Plus class
(10-day advance notice)
Bland YES YES - -
Diabetic YES YES - -
Gluten-free YES YES YES -
Hindu meal YES YES - -
Kosher meal YES YES YES -
Low-calorie YES YES - -
Low-cholesterol YES YES - -
Low-sodium YES YES - -
Muslim meal YES YES - -
Lactose- free YES YES - -
Vegetarian, lacto-ovo? YES YES YES YES
Vegetarian, Oriental YES YES - -
Vegetarian, strict YES YES YES -
Vegetarian Asian YES YES - -

Occupy two seats

If your seat is not adapted to your size due to a disability, you may request two side-by-side seats for extra space at no additional cost. Please contact our Customer Centre at 1 888 VIA-RAIL (1 888 842-7245) or 1 800 268-9503 (for the hearing-impaired) at least 48 hours before your departure.

Accommodation Process
  • When a customer indicates that they have a disability and special arrangements are required due to the seat width, a Customer Centre agent will refer your request to a specialist for handling.
  • A Customer Relations Specialist will request medical documentation and accommodations will be made according to your needs and feasibility.


Medication and special equipment


Passengers requiring medication during their trip must make sure they do not leave it in their checked baggage. Diabetic passengers must carry a sufficient supply of disposable syringes.

Insulin or any other medication that must be kept cool will be stored in a refrigerator, provided that the train has a dining car, or a Skyline or Park car.

Oxygen and respirators

Passengers requiring oxygen during their trip are asked to bring their own equipment, be it an oxygen concentrator, an oxygen bottle, or both.

To ensure the presence of an outlet, it is strongly recommended that travellers using oxygen and respirators travel in a cabin for one or cabin for two.?Passengers travelling in a berth are asked to call us at 1 888 VIA-RAIL (1 888 842-7245) or TTY 1 800 268-9503 (hearing impaired) to ensure that an outlet is accessible.

Oxygen bottles are subject to the following restrictions:
You may bring one (1) oxygen bottle in the passenger car. It must not exceed 91 cm (36 in.) in length by 15 cm (6 in.) in diameter (maximum volume of 15,000 cubic cm or 1,000 cubic inches), and must be in a proper carrying device that will protect the valve assembly.

Oxygen bottles are not accepted as checked baggage.


Stretchers for travellers with reduced mobility will be transported free of charge in the baggage car regardless of whether or not the owner travels aboard the same train.