Published: 12:01, 11 September 2019
| Updated: 09:04, 12 September 2019
Commuters dealing with Southeastern delays have a better chance of a refund.
The rail operator is cutting the wait time of its Delay Repay scheme in half for Kent passengers.
KMTV spoke to Southeastern boss David Statham
From today passengers facing delays of 15 minutes or more can apply for some of their rail fare back.
Anyone delayed between 15 and 30 minutes will get 25% of their single ticket fee back, or 12.5% of their return ticket fee.
Delays of between 30 minutes and an hour will get passengers 50% of a single ticket back and 25% of a return fee.
Between an hour and two hours will get late customers the full price of a single ticket back, but only half of a return, if its two hours or more then you'll receive the full cost of your ticket back, whether you bought a single or return ticket.
Southeastern claims its Delay Repay forms have already been made faster and simpler to complete.
David Statham, Southeastern's managing director, said: "I don’t want any of our passengers to be delayed, but if they are it’s really important that we compensate them properly and in good time.
That’s why I’m delighted to announce these improvements to Delay Repay, which will make a real difference for people who experience delays of between 15 and 29 minutes.”
The future of the rail franchise and high speed services between Maidstone and London hang in the balance after a search for a new owner was cancelled by the Department for Transport last month.
Rail minister, Chris Heaton-Harris, said: "Our top priority is reliable trains which run on time. However, it is absolutely right that when things go wrong passengers are compensated fairly and quickly.
"With the launch of DR15 on Southeastern, nearly 90% of passenger journeys on franchises we manage are now covered by the scheme. This means faster, more convenient compensation, and a better deal for passengers with more people now able claim if their services are delayed.”
"Additionally, the Southeastern website has been upgraded to reduce the number of steps needed to complete the online form by using information on previous claims and regular journeys."
A spokesman for passenger watchdog Transport Focus said: "Southeastern passengers will welcome the introduction of Delay Repay 15 compensation.
"Transport Focus research found just 35% of passengers who were eligible claimed compensation for their journey.
"So, it's now important that Southeastern actively encourages passengers to claim and make it quick and easy to do so.
“When things go wrong train operators must ensure every eligible passenger knows about compensation and how to claim. To make their voice heard passengers must claim every time and Make Delay Pay.”
More by this authorLuke May