The proportion of rail passengers claiming compensation for delayed journeys has risen but is still less than half of all those eligible, according to the transport user watchdog.
A survey of more than 11,000 passengers carried out by Transport Focus between March and April found that 37% of passengers eligible for compensation claimed for their most recent delay. This was up by two percentage points since 2018
There was a significant disparity between two types of Delay Repay compensation, with nearly half (46%) of passengers eligible under Delay Repay 30 claiming for their most recent delay of at least 30 minutes.
This was significantly higher than the 22% who claimed under Delay Repay 15.
Although the Government and rail firms have hailed the introduction of compensation after 15 minutes as a significant development, the sums paid are smaller.
The research found that 51%) of all eligible passengers who chose not to claim did not think it was worth bothering for the amount they would get back.
Transport Focus said that following recommendations from its Make Delay Pay campaign it is pleased to see some improvements in the process. It said that subject to an Office of Rail and Road consultation, announcements about compensation during delays on board trains and at stations could become a licence condition for operators along with efforts to simplify the claim process.
Chief executive Anthony Smith said: ‘This research shows that, while train operators have improved, there is still a way to go to make it easier for passengers to claim and more aware of the compensation they are entitled to.
‘While delay compensation has been less of an issue during lockdown, improving reliability, and a simpler, more automated claims process for when things do go wrong can help increase confidence in the railway as passengers return in future.’