Sep 05

Get your money back for delayed trains

Reading Time: 4 mins

If you’ve had problems with trains recently – particularly if you travel in the Southern region – you will be wondering how to get your money back from delayed trains.

Happily, there is the (taxpayer-funded) Delay Repay scheme you can get a partial refund for any delayed trains and if you are delayed by over 2 hours you can get 100% of your money back.



Delayed Trains: How bad is the problem?

delayed trainsIn August 2014 there were 667,000 trains running in total across the network, excluding the underground. Of these trains, 67,200 (about 10%) suffered from either a cancellation or a delay of over thirty minutes at some point during their journey.

If an average of 10% of journeys are cancelled or severely delayed (and for some operators, considerably more) then there is a good chance you have been affected.

Don’t pay for a service you didn’t receive, check out the Delay Repay scheme.


How does the Delay Repay scheme work?

The Delay Repay scheme is a government initiative set up to ensure commuters are refunded in the case of a delay.

  • If you’re delayed by 30-59 minutes then you will get back 50% of the money back for delayed traincost of a single ticket (or 50% of the relevant journey on a return ticket).
  • You’ll get a 100% of the cost of a single ticket if you’re delayed anything longer (or 100% of the relevant journey on a return ticket).
  • If you’re delayed by two hours or more then the same rules apply but you’ll be able to get a complete refund if you have a return ticket.

season tickets

Don’t worry if you have a season ticket, you can also get a refund.

  • The same percentages will apply and the refund will be calculated on the proportional daily cost of your ticket.
  • The train operator assumes you travel each working day and one day every other weekend.
  • You can also get a refund for weekly and annual tickets although the proportional daily costs may vary.


how do you get the money

Unfortunately the refunds don’t come in cash but in National Rail vouchers.

The vouchers last for 12 months and can be used to pay for future travel.

Be aware that not all train operators use the Delay Repay system. Some are working to older franchise agreements with the government called the Passenger Charter.

The way compensation works is different for each of these operators so it is worth checking with your train company what you are entitled to.



How can I claim?

If you want to claim a refund then you must do within 28 days of your delayed journey.

You can make a claim by filling in a Delay Repay form online, printing a form off and posting it to the specified address (each rail service will have a different address) or going to your local station and picking a form up.

If you’re in any doubt, look on your rail provider’s website, they should have a form easily available.

You will need to send proof so you will need either the ticket itself, a receipt or, in the case of a season ticket, a copy of the ticket.

delayed trainsThere is a great service provided by Delay Repay Sniper to help you make sure you get every bit of compensation you are entitled to. For £3.75 a month they will send you nightly emails with links to relevant claims that may have affected your journey along with a link to a downloadable claim form. This is a great way to keep on top of the delays you suffer.

Even better, for £14.75 a month they do all the work for you including filling in, printing off and posting the forms for you. They provide confirmation at each step and provide additional routes on demand. They are currently offering their customers a price promise stating that if they don’t send a service that you can claim on in a given subscription month they will refund that month’s subscription fee.

One customer said he had received £580 in compensation over  just 10 months and, at the moment, they’re offering one month’s free trial of the simple service, so it’s a great opportunity to see if it can help you get back your hard earned cash.

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Burgess Taylor
Burgess Taylor

South West Trains have so far not implemented this scheme, even though they claim the refunds themselves from Network Rail

Marc Crosby
Marc Crosby

Yes, frustratingly some operators are working to older franchise agreements with the government (Passengers Charter) and therefore not obliged to follow the Delay Repay scheme.

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