“Super-complaint” filed over rail operators’ refund policies after 47 million journeys a year end in cancellation or delay

Which? goes loco, forcing the Office of Rail and Road to take action

We live in a city hobbled by inadequate public transport. Demand and indeed, prices, for trains have never been higher, yet for tens of thousands of commuters, every day’s journey is to be part of a travelling circus.

According to Which? magazine, across the UK as many as 47 million train journeys end in cancellation or delay every year.

But less than a third of people receive the refunds they’re entitled to after paying for failed service.

Which? surveyed 7,000 paying passengers and found only a third bothered to claim compensation. However, passenger group Transport Focus reported in 2013 that 88% of people did not chase companies for refunds after delayed or cancelled trains.

“Millions of passengers are left out of pocket each year, so train companies must do more to put their passengers first and make rail refunds easier,” said Richard Lloyd, executive director of Which?.

Which? has now launched a so-called “super-complaint” to the Office of Rail and Road (ORR), claiming that train companies made the process of obtaining refunds too difficult.

The ORR now has 90 days to respond to the complaint, and decide whether to take action. The ORR also said that it had introduced a new code of conduct to increase transparency for passengers buying tickets.

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