Vouchers are available for passengers who purchased an Advance ticket to or from an area affected by local restrictions (local COVID alert level high or very high in England, or affected areas in Scotland or Wales) if purchased prior to any announcement. This offer will be backdated in situations where restrictions are already in place and will apply to future announcements if further restrictions are introduced.
If customers book a non-refundable ticket to or from an area that is already in a ‘very high’ alert level in England or local lockdowns in Wales or Scotland, then a voucher will not be issued.
How do I claim a voucher?
Please contact your train operator/retailer for details.
Can I get a voucher from Trainline/other independent retailers?
Please contact your independent retailer for details. Independent retailers can use their discretion to offer a credit note if they have the ability to do so, or a fee-free change of journey.
Why are admin fees still being charged for flexible tickets?
Flexible tickets are already refundable and an admin fee will continue to apply. The price of these tickets does not change, so passengers are advised to buy these when they are certain they can make their journey.
Why are train operators/retailers only offering vouchers rather than cash refunds for Advance tickets that can’t be used?
In accordance with the National Rail Conditions of Travel, Advance tickets are non-refundable and this is clearly stated at the point of purchase. The offer of Rail Travel Vouchers is discretionary to provide additional flexibility to re-book for a future journey up to 12 months ahead, recognising that passengers are in many cases unable to re-book journeys in the short term.
Is this a U-turn? / Why has the government only just introduced this policy? / Why did the train company deny my previous request for a refund/free change of journey/ voucher?
Special arrangements that were agreed by the Government and the rail industry at the start of the pandemic, including waiving administration fees for refunds and changes, came to an end on 7 September.
Recognising the increasing number of Covid – related restrictions that have come into effect in recent weeks, the government has worked with train operators and retailers as quickly as possible to agree how best to support passengers whilst protecting taxpayers.
The policy will be backdated to enable eligible passengers to claim vouchers where restrictions are already in place.
How long will these temporary arrangements be in place for?
These new arrangements will be kept under review alongside developments with public health restrictions.