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  1. ITV Report

Refunds for bad weather travel delays: Know your rights

Snow falling in London Bridge on Thursday Credit: PA

Many travellers will see their journeys disrupted as a result of the snow and winter storms today and in the coming days.

Here is a guide to what passengers are entitled to if their journeys are disrupted by bad weather:

  • Trains

The amount of compensation available to rail passengers varies by train operator and length of delay.

Many firms use a scheme called Delay Repay whereby payouts range from 25% of the cost of a one-way fare to 100% of the cost of a return ticket.

On Southern Railway payouts are made after delays of 15 minutes.

But for some journeys on other routes a delay must be at least one hour before compensation is payable.

  • Eurostar

Passengers on Cross-Channel Eurostar rail trips delayed by bad weather are entitled to compensation.

Payouts consist of:

25% of the cost of a single ticket for delays of 60-119 minutes

50% of the cost of a single ticket for delays of 120-179 minutes

75% of the cost of a single ticket for delays of three hours of more

Affected passengers must wait 24 hours and then claim online.

  • Flights

Passengers are entitled to assistance under EU law if they are:

Flying from an EU airport or flying from a non-EU airport into an EU airport on an EU-based airline.

This applies for:

Flights under 932 miles (such as London to Venice) delayed by at least two hours.

Flights more than 932 miles but still within the EU (such as London to Athens) delayed by at least three hours.

Travellers are entitled to two free phone calls, faxes or emails, free meals and refreshments appropriate to the delay and free hotel accommodation and transfers if an overnight stay is required.

Airlines should provide vouchers for these at the airport. Price comparison website TravelSupermarket.com urges passengers to ask for help from someone who works for the airline if assistance is not offered.

This is one way to get around in the snow. Credit: PA

If passengers are not given help at the airport, they are advised to keep receipts for expenses and try to claim money from the airline later, although only reasonable costs will be reimbursed.

If a flight is cancelled, or delayed by at least five hours and a passenger decides not to travel, they should be offered an alternative flight or a full refund for that flight and any others on the same booking that will no longer be used.

Compensation for delays caused by weather that makes flying dangerous is not payable under EU law, but passengers may be able to claim on their travel insurance.

While non-EU airlines flying from a non-EU airport should also refund passengers or try to find an alternative flight, they may not provide food and drink.

  • Ferries

Ferry operators whose services are delayed for more than one-and-a-half hours due to bad weather should offer an alternative sailing at the earliest opportunity or a refund within seven days.

Meals, snacks and refreshments should also be provided if they are available.

Ferry operators do not have to offer compensation if delays are caused by weather.

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