International railways are subject to the European Regulation (EC) 1371/2007. Train passenger rights were recently modified by the Regulation (EU) 2021/782 of 29 April 2021 (apply from 7 June 2023).

 

 

 

 

Information and tickets

When you buy a ticket, the rail company must give you clear information on:

  • General conditions applicable to your journey
  • Time schedules and conditions for the lowest fares and the fastest trip
  • Services available on board
  • Accessibility, access conditions and availability on board of facilities for people with disabilities or reduced mobility
  • Complaint procedures

During your trip, the train operator must give information about:

  • Connecting services
  • Delays and cancellations
  • On-board services

Rail companies or ticket vendors shall facilitate and sell tickets via ticket offices or ticketing machines or any other widely available technology (telephone, internet, etc…). Persons with disabilities shall be permitted to buy tickets on board the train at no extra cost. Rail companies may limit or deny this right on justifiable grounds related to security or compulsory train reservation.

 

Delays and cancellations

If you are informed that your train will arrive at your final destination with a delay of at least 60 minutes or if you are delayed of more than 60 minutes due to a cancelled train you have the right to:

  • Cancel your travel plans and ask for reimbursement of the full cost of the ticket for the part of the journey not made. You may also ask for reimbursement for the part already made if the journey is no longer serving any purpose in relation to your original travel plan together with, when relevant, a return service to the first point of departure at the earliest opportunity.
  • Transport to your final destination at the earliest opportunity or at a later date at your convenience.
  • Assistance in the form of meals and refreshments (proportionate to the waiting time) if the delay is longer than 60 minutes. In cases where a stay of one or more nights becomes necessary, the rail company has to provide free of charge accommodation and transport between the railway station and place of accommodation. From 7 June 2023, the maximum duration of accommodation provided will be 3 nights as long as the delay is due to extraordinary circumstances.

If you decide to continue your journey as planned or accept alternative transport to your destination, you may be entitled to compensation:

  • 25% of the ticket price if the delay is between 60 and 119 minutes
  • 50% if the ticket price if the delay is more than 120 minutes

The compensation is calculated in relation to the full price paid for the delayed service. Where the transport contract is for a return journey, compensation for delay on either the outward or the return leg shall be calculated in relation to the price indicated for that leg of the journey on the ticket. Where there is no such indication of the price of the individual legs of the journey, the compensation is calculated in relation to half of the price paid for the ticket.

Warning: You will not receive compensation if you were informed of a delay before you bought your ticket or if you opted for a refund of your ticket.

NB: To date, rail companies have to pay compensation even in case of extraordinary circumstances (extreme weather conditions, major natural disasters, major public crises.) From 7 June 2023, rail company will not be obliged to pay compensation if it can prove that the delay , missed connection or cancellation was caused or inherently linked with extraordinary circumstances, fault on part of the passenger or a fault of a third party which the rail company was unable to avoid consequences (persons on the track, cable-theft, on-board emergencies…). Internal strikes do not constitute a case of extraordinary circumstance.

 

Luggage

You may take hand luggage and live animals on board but the rail company is not liable in case of loss or damage. However, if your registered luggage is lost or damaged you have a right to compensation:

  • Up to 80€ per missing kg or €1,200 per item of registered luggage if you can prove the value of its contents
  • 20€ per missing kg or €300 per piece of registered luggage if you can’t prove the value of its contents

If there is a delay in the delivery of your registered luggage, you also have a right to compensation in respect of each whole period of 24 hours (subject to a maximum of 14 days, then your luggage is considered as lost). Up to 0,80€ per kg or 14€ per item of luggage if you can prove the value of its content. Up to 0,14€ per kg or 2,80€ per item of luggage delivered late if you cannot prove its content.

Warning : The amounts indicated may vary, so do not hesitate to contact us if you wish to know the updated amount of your rights.

 

Travellers with disabilities or reduced mobility

If you have a disability or reduced mobility, you have the right to access train travel. You cannot be refused transport because of your disability or reduced mobility except for reasons justified on the grounds of safety or of the design of the train.

Travelers with reduced mobility are entitled to assistance, free of charge, on board and at the station before and after your journey. The rail company has to be notified at least 48 hours before the assistance is needed (24H from 7 June 2023). If no notification is made the railway company shall make all reasonable efforts to provide assistance.

 

Death or personal injury

If you are injured in a train accident or if you are dependant of a victim of a fatal train accident, you are entitled to compensation. Amounts and form (lump sum or payment of annuity) are set by national law but the maximum amount of damages awarded is 175 000€.

 

New rules from 7 June 2023

The current exemptions and the new Regulation allow Member States not to apply certain rules for urban, suburban and regional trains (travel within the Greater Region for Luxembourg). These include rules on reimbursement or compensation of passengers in case of delay or cancellation of a train. In example, in case of a delay of 2 hours between Metz and Luxembourg, you are not entitled to claim compensation to SNCF or CFL.

From 7 June 2023, rail companies will have to dedicated storage areas for bicycles and they will have new obligations regarding through-tickets and connections. Rail companies will also have to be more transparent about deadlines and procedures for complaints.

 

Complaints

Each rail company has to propose a claim mechanism (preferably in writing with all supporting documents). If you don’t receive a reply from the railway company within 1 month or if you are not satisfied with the reply, you can complain to the competent national authority. In each Member state a national authority has been set up to monitor the enforcement of the European rights of train passengers Regulation (CE) 1371/2007 as well as Regulation (EU) 2021/782.

In Luxembourg, the designated authority is the Ministry for Consumer Protection (passagers@mpc.etat.lu).

Feel free to contact the European Consumer Centre Luxembourg if you need more information about your train passenger rights:

Email: info@cecluxembourg.lu

Phone : +352 26 84 64-1