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Your rights to a refund (rail)

If your plans change and you decide not to travel having purchased a ticket, you can apply for a refund on most types of ticket.  Full details of refund arrangements are shown in the National Rail Conditions of Carriage and details about applying for a refund are shown on each train company’s website. 

The train company’s website will advise you where to apply for a refund.  An administration charge of up to £10 on each ticket may be made.  You must apply for the refund within 28 days of the expiry of the ticket’s validity.

Any use made of the ticket before seeking a refund will reduce the level of refund.  In some cases,(such as where the Single fare is close to the Return fare), no refund may be payable after payment of the administration fee.

Some ticket types (e.g. Advance) have no refund value if your plans change. You may be able to change the date and/or time of travel on an Advance ticket (for a fee) if the booked train has not yet left.  Otherwise it has no residual value.

It may be that train you intend to travel by is cancelled or delayed or your reservation on it cannot be honoured. In this case, you are entitled to a full refund of the fare and of any reservation fee if your journey has not begun. No administration charge is made. The ticket office at the station will refund the fare on the spot if it can. You must apply for the refund within 28 days of the expiry of the ticket’s validity. This applies to all ticket types, regardless of place of issue. Advance tickets can be refunded in full under these circumstances.

Check the details on the train company’s website.

Season tickets

Different arrangements apply to refunds on season tickets. 

The season ticket must be returned to the train company which sold it. The refund will be calculated from the day when the season ticket is handed in. To qualify for any refund, a weekly season ticket must still be valid for at least three days; a monthly or longer season ticket must still be valid for at least seven days.

The refund will be based on the difference between the price paid and the total cost of the combination of tickets for a daily return journey until the ticket was handed in. A fee of up to £10 is also payable. The amount of the refund will depend on the length of time the ticket still has to run so in some cases, there may be no refund payable at all if the ticket is close to its expiry date.

Special arrangements apply if you wish to amend the details of an existing season ticket, for example, to a different journey due to moving house or job. The train company which sold you the original ticket can give you full details.

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