Travellers who have had to cancel Christmas coach and train journeys will be entitled to a full refund, the Government has said.
The news comes after Boris Johnson banned anyone living in the new Tier 4 regions from travelling to see family and friends during the previous Christmas travel window of December 23 and 27.
However, the refunds only apply to passengers who booked their travel tickets before the Prime Minister’s address to the nation on Saturday, when he announced Tier 4 restrictions for London and much of the south-east of England.
Claiming your refund:
All train firms have made the refund process a virtual, online process, although each operator has a slightly different process. For example, Great Northern has an online form where the customer must upload a photo of their ticket cut into two halves to claim their money back.
The Rail Delivery Group, which represents train operators, advises qualifying passengers should check the website of the company that sold their ticket for full details of how to obtain a refund.
To get your money back for a cancelled coach ticket, you’ll need to visit the operator’s website and follow the instructions online. Firms are offering immediate refunds, but travellers will need to be patient as rail and coach operators anticipate they will be processing high volumes of refunds over the coming weeks.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “It is imperative that we all follow the new measures and play our part in tackling this virus, protecting others and safeguarding our NHS.
“If you booked a coach or rail journey between December 23 and 27, you are entitled to a cash refund.
“This ensures no one is left out of pocket for doing the right thing – staying home in Tier 4, and elsewhere staying local and only meeting your Christmas bubble on Christmas Day.”
The new Tier 4 restrictions will be reviewed on December 30. The PM’s announcement stated that those living in Tier 4 regions should stay at home unless it’s for essential reasons. Anyone found to be in breach of the rules could be hit with a £200 fine. The fine doubles for further offences, up to a maximum of £6,400.