If the train is more than an hour late, you are entitled to compensation

If the train is more than an hour late, you are entitled to compensation
If the train is more than an hour late, you are entitled to compensation

Traveling by train in Bulgaria is often associated with negative experiences – delays, interruptions of the journey, deplorable condition of the compartments. But even if you’re traveling on Europe’s far more comfortable rail networks, you can run into problems and it’s good to know what your rights are. The European Parliament introduced new consumer protection rules this year, and they apply to all member countries, “Active Users” informs.

When you buy a ticketthe railway company or the ticket seller must provide you with clear information about timetables, conditions for the fastest and cheapest journey, access for passengers with reduced mobility, carriage of bicycles, smoking and non-smoking seats, first and second class, sleepers wagons.

During the journey the operator of the train composition must inform about the services on the train, next station, delays, connections with other lines and transfers, as well as the procedure for lost luggage and complaints.

If you are told that the train will arrive at your final destination with a delay of at least 1 hour, you have the right:

  • cancel the trip and request a refund for the ticket;
  • to request a return to the original place of departure if the delay prevents you from fulfilling the purpose of your journey, or
  • of carriage to your final destination at the earliest opportunity and under similar conditions. This includes the use of alternative transport when the train is blocked and services on the line are suspended;
  • help in the form of food and drinks if the delay is more than 1 hour and even hotel accommodation if you have to stay the night.

If you decide to continue your journey on the same route or with alternative transport, you may have right to compensation, which is 25% of the ticket price if the delay is between 1 and 2 hours or 50% of the ticket price if the delay is more than 2 hours.

You will not receive compensation if you were informed of the delay before you bought the ticket.

You may enjoy the same rights and compensations if you are delayed by more than an hour to your final destination due to canceled train.

In case of injury incident on the train, and also when boarding or leaving, is the responsibility of the railway carrier. He is also responsible for total or partial loss or damage to the passenger’s personal belongings, but only if it is the carrier’s fault. Up to BGN 1,800 is the compensation for damage to hand luggage as a result of an accident, if the company is responsible.

There are no financial restrictions for the company’s liability in the event of death or injury to a passenger. For damages caused to a passenger up to 220,000 euros, the railway carrier cannot limit or exclude its liability. For damages exceeding this amount, the railway carrier is not liable if it proves that it was not negligent.

The passenger has right to advance payment within 15 days of establishing that he is a victim, to cover the immediate costs after the accident. In the event of death, the advance payment cannot be less than EUR 21,000.

If you believe that your rights have been violated, you should file a complaint with the railway company. If you do not receive an answer within 1 month or you are not satisfied with the answer, you can file a complaint with the Consumer Protection Commission or seek a resolution of the dispute in court.

If you bought your ticket online, the complaint is submitted through the online dispute resolution platform for EU citizens, or you may prefer the courts of the country where the train operator is registered. You can also seek help and advice from your local European Consumer Centre.


The article is in bulgaria

Tags: train hour late entitled compensation

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