Have you ever had problems booking rail passenger assistance? Here’s how we helped a member when he was left £130 out of pocket.
John bought £75 return tickets from Trainline.com for him and his wife to travel from Liverpool to Southwold.
John is disabled, and contacted Trainline’s passenger assistance to make accessible travel arrangements for his connection between London Liverpool Street and Euston.
On the way back, the transfer time between stations only allowed enough time to make the journey by tube, rather than giving John more time to take a taxi. As a result, the couple missed their train, forcing them to buy new tickets for the next train home, costing £130.
Trainline refused to reimburse John, saying that it’s a ‘third-party retailer’ and has no liability.
We advised John that usually Trainline acts solely as an ‘agent’ for booking train tickets, and therefore
would not be liable for issues with his journey.
However, passenger assistance is a service it specifically promised to provide during a recorded phone conversation. We advised John to request the transcript, and use this to challenge the company’s decision.
As a result, Trainline paid John £140 to cover the cost of his train and taxi fare home. It also offered him an extra £150 in compensation.
In this situation, Trainline’s failure to arrange acceptable passenger assistance could be considered
negligent, and failing to comply with this promise would amount to an express breach of contract.
John was legally entitled to claim for reasonable losses; in this case, the extra train fare he had to pay to get home.
Contract law doesn’t enforce compensation being paid for inconvenience, but on this occasion Trainline offered it as a goodwill gesture.
“Our team is trained to recognise the needs of passengers with disabilities. We were sorry to hear that Mr Hutchinson’s experience did not meet the high standards we set at Trainline, and we felt it was right to compensate him.
We’ll make sure our customer team receives up-to-date training on how to support customers with disabilities”
Have you ever experienced problems when booking passenger assistance as part of your rail journey? Did the company deal with your complaint effectively?