These are your refund rights if you can't travel on a train due to coronavirus restrictions

Tuesday, 6th October 2020, 2:44 pm
Updated Tuesday, 6th October 2020, 2:45 pm
A number of passengers have been left out of pocket (Photo: Shutterstock)
A number of passengers have been left out of pocket (Photo: Shutterstock)

With restrictions across the UK changing rapidly, many have found themselves out of pocket due to non-refundable train tickets.

In a number of areas with local restrictions, mixing between households is banned, while non-essential travel is restricted.

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In spite of this, a number of passengers have complained that they are unable to get train tickets refunded after finding themselves unable to travel into or out of local lockdown areas.

What kind of train tickets are refundable?

You can apply for a refund on most types of train tickets if you decide not to travel as a result of coronavirus.

Off-peak and Anytime tickets can be refundable, but normally the refund requires a £10 administration fee.

The administration fee is waived, however, if passengers have decided not to travel because of coronavirus or if their journey is disrupted.

What kind of tickets are non-refundable?

Advance purchase tickets are usually non-refundable.

In March, when the UK government announced a national lockdown, this policy was temporarily lifted for anyone who had purchased an advance ticket before Monday 23 March. If you purchased an advance ticket after that date and don't want to travel due to coronavirus restrictions, you will only be able to change the date of travel, costing a £10 administrative fee.

The individual train operator’s website will advise where to apply for a change of journey.

How do I check what type of ticket I purchased?

It should say on your ticket itself, or on your booking confirmation, what type of ticket you have purchased.

How do I apply for a refund?

To claim a refund on a ticket, you should return to the point of purchase. This may be a website like Trainline, for instance, or through the train operator's website itself.

Can I complain if I don't get a refund?

If you have contacted the train operator regarding a refund complaint and are not satisfied with the outcome, you can contact the Rail Ombudsman, who will review your complaint.