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Can I get a refund if my train is cancelled due to the rail strikes?

Can I get a refund if my train is cancelled due to the rail strikes?
A spate of spring and summer transport strikes have caused mayhem for both commuters and UK holidaymakers. But what are you rights when it comes to getting your money back?

The next two weeks are blighted by train disruption, amid four strike days, cuts to one operator’s schedule and expected disruption from the extreme heat.

The first industrial action date is Saturday 13 八月, with train drivers from the Aslef union walking out for 24 小时. This is followed by Avanti West Coast making cuts to their schedule from 14 August to at least 11 九月.

Then next week sees two mass walk outs by members of the RMT Union (18 和 20 八月); as well as a planned strike by RMT Union members who work for the London Underground on 19 八月.

在此之上, 18 和 20 August will see strike action by around 2,500 members of the Transport Salaried Staffs Association (TSSA); as well as electrical control room operatives with the Unite union.

So what rights do you have if your pre-booked train is cancelled due to the strikes?

这是您需要知道的一切.

My train has been cancelled due to the strike. Can I get a refund?

是的. If your scheduled train service is cancelled by the operator, you are entitled to either:

  • a full refund, OR
  • a free change of journey time

It doesn’t matter what type of ticket you purchased.

Even if your train isn’t cancelled, you may decide not to travel on a strike day due to the risk of disruption. 如果是这种情况, Network Rail has confirmed you will also be able to claim a refund or change your journey time free of charge. “If you have purchased an Advance, Off-Peak or Anytime ticket and choose not to travel, you will be eligible for a change or refund from the original retailer of your ticket,” it explains on its website.

If changing the date and time of your journey works better for you, it’s worth noting that most companies have increased flexibility around the summer strikes. GWR tells customers they can change the date and time of their train ticket (whatever type it is; Advance, Off-Peak and so on) for free up to 6pm the night before the journey.

同时, Avanti says: “Customers with tickets for 18 至 21 August can claim a full refund from their point of purchase – read more below. Any customers with existing tickets for travel from 18 至 21 August can use those tickets anytime between now and 23 八月。”. This means that, subject to availability, you’ll be able to use the voucher on a different day up until 23 八月. You need to have booked through the rail operator’s own platform in order to arrange this with them.

<p>Rail operator Avanti West Coast is offering flexibility on tickets</磷>

Rail operator Avanti West Coast is offering flexibility on tickets

In general, you should also be able to use your train ticket on a different service over the couple of days following the strike, with no charge attached. For this months’ strikes, Network Rail advises: “If you have a ticket for travel on 13 August you can use this ticket either on 12 August or through to and including Tuesday 16 八月, or if you have a ticket for travel on 18 或者 20 August you can use this ticket either on the day before the date on the ticket or through to and including Tuesday 23 August.” This excludes both Season Tickets and London Underground tickets.

Almost all train operators provide compensation regardless of the cause of a cancellation – which is in contrast to airlines, who do not need to pay out if the delay is beyond their control.

What if the strikes cause a delay rather than a cancellation?

If your UK train is delayed due to the strikes, you are legally entitled to “Delay Repay” compensation. This depends on how many minutes you were delayed due to the train disruption.

  • If you were delayed 15-29 分钟, you can claim 25 per cent of the price of a single ticket and 12.5 per cent on a return ticket.
  • If you were delayed 30-59 分钟, you can claim 50 per cent on a single ticket, 或者 25 per cent on a return ticket.
  • If you were delayed 60-119 分钟, you can claim 100 per cent on a single ticket and 50 per cent on a return ticket.
  • If you were delayed 120 minutes or more, you can claim a full refund on both single and return tickets.

What if I have a Season Ticket?

Season Ticket holders (monthly or longer tickets) who choose not to travel on strike days can claim 100 per cent compensation for these days through the “Delay Repay” system. You should go to the refunds area on the website of the operator or retailer you bought the ticket from.

You can also apply for an overall refund for a whole Season Ticket based on strike disruption, going through the retailer who sold you the ticket. Network Rail explains: “Refunds are calculated from the date you return your season ticket and will be the difference between the price you paid and the cost of a ticket or tickets for the period for which you have used the ticket up to and including the date you request a refund.” A £10 admin fee applies.

<p>Northern Railway's refunds area</磷>

Northern Railway’s refunds area

How do I claim a refund or Delay Repay compensation?

Your refund should come from the original retailer of your ticketbe that an individual rail operator or a third-party website. For most operators, a dedicated Delay Repay or refund page will appear under their “Help” tab.

Third party booking site Thetrainline.com advises: “As soon as we’re told by the train operators that your train is cancelled or rescheduled, we’ll be in contact to offer you an online refund. Please hold tight in the meantime.”

You should try to claim within 28 天, but some train companies allow longer.

To claim, you’ll need to provide your contact details, a copy of your ticket or proof of purchase, as well as details of your journey (origin and destination stations, scheduled departure time, and the time you arrived).