All you need to know about claiming compensation when you are delayed on Great Western Railway

FROM today, it’s all change for passengers wanting to claim compensation for delays with Great Western Railway. A new, more generous system means you can get partial ticket refunds for delays of as little as 15 minutes.

Monday, 1st April 2019, 1:25 am
Updated Monday, 1st April 2019, 1:36 am
Portsmouth and Southsea Station

Here’s everything you need to know.

How late does my train have to be before I can make a claim?

Previously, it’s been a complicated picture for passengers, with Great Western Railway’s London Thames Valley route offering compensation for delays of 30 minutes or more, while its other routes only offered compensation for delays of an hour or more.

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Portsmouth and Southsea Station

Happily, from today, that’s now a thing of the past. If you’re delayed by 15 minutes or more, on any Great Western Railway train, you can make a claim.

How much money could I get back?

This depends on how long you were delayed for.

For delays of 15 to 29 minutes, you can claim a quarter of your single fare, or 12.5 per cent of a return ticket.

For delays of 30 to 59 minutes, you can reclaim half of the single fare paid, or a quarter of a return ticket.

For delays of between one and two hours, you can claim the full cost of a single ticket or half a return ticket.

For delays of two hours or more, you can claim the full cost of a single or return ticket.

Does it matter what caused the delay?

No, under the Delay Repay scheme, any compensation is paid regardless of who was to blame for the hold-ups.

What if my train was cancelled?

If your train was cancelled and you had to take a later train, you can claim if your journey was delayed by 15 minutes or more - even if this later train was running on time.

What if I decided not to travel?

Then it’s a different process. If you decided not to travel because your train was cancelled or delayed, you can claim a full refund on your ticket by returning it to the original retailer. Under the National Rail Conditions of Travel, this applies to all tickets, including those sold as non-refundable.

What if an emergency timetable was operating?

Then any delays will be measured against this emergency timetable, not the original timetable.

How long do I have to lodge a claim?

You must make your claim within 28 days of your delayed journey.

How do I make a claim?

Do I need to keep my ticket?

Yes! Don’t let it get swallowed up by any automated ticket gates. Instead ask a member of station staff to let you through. You will need your ticket to prove you were travelling that day.

I travel using a season ticket. Can I claim compensation?

You can claim Delay Repay for a single, return or weekly ticket.

GWR says it also proactively refunds season ticket holders affected by periods of significant disruption.

How long will they take to pay out?

National targets state that rail operators should make a decision about a claim within a month.

Official figures show Great Western Railway resolved 76 per cent of claims within 20 working days in the first half of 2018/19.

What if the disruption left me out of pocket in other ways?

Delay Repay won’t give out compensation beyond the cost of the rail ticket.

If your delay caused you to miss a concert, for example, you can instead try claiming compensation under the Consumer Rights Act. But this would only work if the train company had caused the delay.

Bear in mind, you can’t seek to recover the same money twice.

My journey wasn’t delayed but I was unhappy with the service for a different reason - can I make a claim?

You could certainly try lodging a complaint with its customer services team and seeing if they would offer you something as a goodwill gesture. They’re on 03457 000125.