Automatic compensation for delayed passengers
RAIL passengers delayed by 15 minutes or more will now be eligible for automatic compensation, it has been announced – but there’s a bit of a catch.
Govia-Thameslink Railway (GTR) said its automatic “Delay Repay” scheme will help “modernise one of the most congested networks in the country”.
People using Southern Rail and Gatwick Express trains will now automatically be compensated for delays of 15-minutes or more, it was announced (Thursday).
While this may make your waits just that little bit more bearable, there is a catch.
To be eligible for the automatic delay repay scheme, you must have a “key smartcard” – but the good news is they are totally free.
All you have to do is order it online at www.southernrailway.com/tickets-andfares/the-key-smartcard/ and it will be delivered to you within five working days.
Every time you tap the on yesterday smartcard in and out of your journey, the compensation system will use a series of algorithms to record any delays.
It compares how long it has taken the passenger to complete the journey against how long the journey should have taken.
A claim will be sent automatically to the passenger’s online account and all you have to do is review the claim and click the confirmation button.
Where there is a discrepancy, the system checks whether there were any corresponding train delays or cancellations.
Where can you use the smartcard?
You can use the key smartcard across the Govia network, which includes Southern in Surrey.
According to Southern and Gatwick Express passenger services director Angie Doll, this is just one step in the continued improvement of the service.
“Passengers have seen a significant improvement in Southern service levels but we still have more to do,” she said. “And when things go wrong on this, the most congested network in the UK, passengers deserve compensation.
“Now, with automatic Delay Repay, it couldn’t be quicker or simpler to get money back if you are delayed.”
Govia’s original repay claim process will remain in place alongside the automatic scheme.