SWR delay repay on strike action

Discussion in 'Disputes & Prosecutions' started by Muzer, 10 Oct 2018 at 22:35.

  1. Muzer

    Muzer Established Member

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    Should SWR offer delay repay for trains cancelled as a result of a strike? Does the answer depend on whether the ticket was bought before or after the strike was announced? Does the answer depend on whether or not you have an itinerary?

    I bought a ticket on the day of the strike, but delay repay was denied. I understand this probably falls foul of the "you knew about the delay when you bought the ticket" clause, but I'm curious as to the specific edge cases since I feel (as a season ticket holder) I'm likely to come up against some of them in the future.
     
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  3. ForTheLoveOf

    ForTheLoveOf Established Member

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    Delay Repay is based on what you are informed of when buying your ticket. If the timetable subsequently changes, or you are not sufficiently informed of the strike action modifying the normal timetable, then Delay Repay is not affected.

    If you were aware of the revised strike timetable at the time of buying your ticket, you can only claim against the strike timetable. If you were not made aware of it - for example because you bought your ticket at an unstaffed station's TVM, and there were no posters or announcements for whatever reason - then the normal timetable must be used as the basis for calculating "delays".

    If you are a season ticket holder then I would argue the timetable that is planned at the time of you buying your season ticket is what counts. If there is subsequently a modification to the timetable that is not relevant to the validity of your Delay Repay claim.
     
  4. Muzer

    Muzer Established Member

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    Cheers, I kind of thought that was the case. Though for reasons I've specified in other threads I'm a bit wary of "if the timetable subsequently changes", since for an annual season (for instance) the rail industry doesn't produce engineering works timetables for anywhere near that long a timespan, and (to me) it'd be absurd to suggest all season ticket holders could request delay repay for engineering works as a result! To me, "normal" timetable changes due to engineering works shouldn't count for delay repay, but things like late-notice strike timetables and emergency timetables due to other disruption should count — but I don't know of any particular rule that would make this the case; this is just how I *think* it *should* work.

    But what piqued my curiosity is that when I claimed delay repay for the day when I'd bought a return ticket on the day (obviously off the route of my season!), I received the following response:

     
  5. Silverdale

    Silverdale Member

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    Delay repay was to some degree a political sop to the constant complaints and angry letters to MPs that train companies were being compensated by NR for delays due to track signalling, etc, but none of that was being passed-on to customers.

    But the 'knee-jerk' way that delay repay was implemented went beyond addressing that particular perceived unfairness. It appears to give customers an expectation of compensation for arrivals later than those advertised at the time the purchase was made. That includes arrivals which are later due to timetabling changes for which the train company doesn't receive any compensation from NR.

    If compensation is payable when delays are due to timetabling changes rather than failing to perform according to the timetable, it creates the perverse situation where there is a disincentive for the industry to introduce timetabling changes, even when those changes would benefit customers as a whole. e.g by getting infrastructure maintenance and route improvements done in a more timely/cost effective manner or recasting a service to provide better connections, journey time reductions etc.
     

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