Which? survey slams rail operators’ delay compensation efforts

Consumers’ association Which? claims that rail operators still aren’t doing enough to inform delayed passengers of their rights to compensation.

The association’s latest train satisfaction survey scored companies based on the responses of over 7,300 train travellers when asked about their journeys over the last 12 months.

Travellers were asked to rate how they felt about factors such as reliability, punctuality, value for money and cleanliness.

Nearly three in 10 (29%) rail passengers said that they had suffered a delay when they last travelled. Three quarters of those held up for more than an hour said they were not told that this meant they qualified for a full refund.

Southern was the worst for delays, with four in 10 (39%) saying they were held up the last time they travelled.

C2C was the least delayed with around one in ten (14%) passengers reporting a delay on their last journey.

London Overground was found to be the best operator for informing passengers of their rights on delays. The survey found that the operator told nearly four in ten (38%) customers when they were entitled to a full refund on their last journey.

Only two in 10 (19%) of those delayed on a Southern journey were told that they were entitled to claim compensation.

Thameslink & Great Northern/First Capital Connect scored the lowest on overall satisfaction with a score of 43%.

Five of the bottom six were also at the bottom of the table in last year’s survey, and only a third improved their place in the table from last year.

Grand Central topped the table with a score of 76%, the highest-ever score in the history of the survey.

Which? executive director, Richard Lloyd, said: “Long delays and consistently low levels of customer service are driving commuters to distraction.

“Passengers often have little or no choice as to the rail companies they travel with, so as ticket prices continue to rocket, more must be done to improve customers’ satisfaction and to inform people of their right to a refund as a result of delays.”

The survey was carried out during November 2014. There were 7,309 responses from commuter and leisure travellers about the journeys they had taken in the previous 12 months.

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