Greater Anglia to introduce new compensation scheme for delayed trains
ARCHANT EASTERN DAILY PRESS (01603) 772434
Rail passengers in Norfolk and Suffolk will soon be able to claim compensation for delays of 15 minutes or more.
The region’s train operator Greater Anglia is introducing a new Delay Repay (DR15) scheme on April 1 following a deal signed with the Department for Transport.
It will enable passengers travelling on the Great Anglia network to claim back 25pc of a single fare, regardless of the cause of the delay.
Customers will be able to claim compensation online, by email or by hard copy, with money transferred directly into their bank account.
Existing compensation arrangements are already in place for delays in excess of 30 minutes.
Richard Clinnick, assistant editor at Rail Magazine, welcomed the move.
He said: “It shows a willingness to give back and is ahead of the franchise commitments.
“As long as people are able to claim easily and get their money quick, then this is a welcome scheme.”
Chris Grayling, secretary of state for transport, announced in October 2016 that DR15 would be rolled out to all rail franchises.
Jamie Burles, managing director for Greater Anglia, said: “We’ve worked in close partnership with the Department for Transport to offer this significant benefit during the existing franchise as soon as possible, meeting our customers’ aspirations to see this upgrade earlier than expected.
“We’re fully focused on improving punctuality and reliability, in collaboration with Network Rail, but customers will now be able to claim compensation for any delays of 15 minutes and over, when things do go wrong.”
The new scheme comes as a survey published in January revealed passengers were significantly less satisfied with their journeys over the past 12 months.
Independent rail watchdog Transport Focus ranked Greater Anglia in the bottom five of all UK rail operators for customer satisfaction.
Its survey last year found that 73pc of passengers were satisfied with their journeys on Greater Anglia. The previous year the figure had been 81pc.
Greater Anglia said the figures do not reflect the situation on its lines in Norfolk.
The company said its latest punctuality figures stand at just over 90pc.