Thinking about making a journey?

What’s the best day to travel over the Christmas period?

The best advice for passengers is to avoid travel on strike days unless it’s absolutely necessary.

There will be fewer trains, starting later and finishing earlier, and some will have no services at all. This includes from 6pm on Saturday 24 December until 6am on Tuesday 27 December 2022, with most services stopping well before 6pm on Christmas Eve.

Check timetables, which are published three or four days in advance, to see what’s running.

What about non-strike days?

On the days following the strikes, services may start later, trains will be crowded, and services could be affected by staff not working overtime between 18 December to 2 January. This will hit some operators more than others and services could be cancelled (sometimes at short notice).

Will the prices on non-strike days be going up?

No. But cheaper Advance tickets may sell out quicker, because of the extra demand. Some operators suspend sales of Advance tickets for strike days because they are for a specific train. These may be put back on sale when the revised timetables are published.

What are the cheapest times to travel?

Travelling at less popular times and avoiding peak periods can save money, as can trading speed for price when there’s a choice of operator or routes – slower trains may be cheaper. Railcards can also make big savings if you have one of these.

Click here to read our more general tips for saving money on your rail fare.

What are your rights if you have a ticket and need to change to another day?

If your train is cancelled, delayed, or rescheduled and you don’t travel you can get a full, fee-free refund. If you’re making a return trip this includes both parts of the journey, even if one of them is not on a strike day. Go back to the organisation or outlet you bought your ticket from. Advance, Anytime or Off-Peak tickets for travel on a strike day can be used on other dates either before or after strike days and up to and including Tuesday 20 December.

Time restrictions apply, so Off-Peak tickets cannot be used during peak periods, and Advance tickets should be used as close to the original day and time. If seat reservations are required, it’s best to get a refund and rebook.

If your train is running but you don’t want to travel, check with the operator or outlet you bought the ticket from as different rules may apply. if you do travel remember that you can claim compensation if you are late – check with your operator for details.

What are your rights if the new ticket is more expensive than the original ticket because of the time you need to travel?

You can avoid the chance of paying more by using your original ticket before or after strike dates. But if you travel in the peak rather than the off-peak you may have to pay the difference.

Can you get a refund on a season ticket for strike days?

Holders of flexi, monthly and longer season ticket holders who don’t travel on strike days can get a day’s worth of travel back. Claim this using your operator’s Delay Repay compensation scheme – have a look at your operator’s website. Weekly season ticket holders can claim Delay Repay if their train is delayed or cancelled on the day, or a ‘do not travel’ warning is in place.