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Making a complaint

If you are unhappy with any part of our service, there are several ways you can tell us.

What to include with your complaint

The more information you can give us, the quicker we will be able to reply to you. Where possible, we need to know:

  • the time and date of your journeys
  • the stations you travelled to and from
  • the names of any staff involved
  • copies of your tickets and any other documents that might help

Helping you make a complaint

You can ask a friend, family member, guardian, support worker or carer to make a complaint on your behalf. We'll just need your permission to deal with them. This does not apply if you are the parent or guardian of a child aged 16 or under.

Responding to complaints

We aim to respond to all complaints within 5 days of receiving them. Sometimes it can take longer, for example, if we have to investigate what happened. For the last 4-week period our average response time for complaints was 11.19 working days.

Complaints handling performance

Period Percentage of complaints responded to in 10 working days Percentage of complaints responded to in 20 working days Average response time for responding to complaints (days)
Period 1
01/04/23 to 29/04/23
94.3% 98.9% 3.04
Period 2
30/04/23 to 27/05/23
93.6% 98.4% 3.94
Period 3
28/05/23 to 24/06/23
90.9% 99.0% 4.44
Period 4
25/06/23 to 22/07/23
57.30% 97.90% 9.44
Period 5
23/07/23 to 19/08/23
55.70% 96.40% 9.26
Period 6
20/08/23 to 16/09/23
76.40% 97.00% 7.49
Period 7
17/09/23 to 14/10/23
61.50% 96.60% 8.67
Period 8
15/10/23 to 11/11/23
26.50% 96.00% 10.52
Period 9
12/11/23 to 09/12/23
18.30% 95.10% 11.49
Period 10
10/12/23 to 06/01/24
14.10% 97.10% 12.58
Period 11
07/01/24 to 03/02/24
36.60% 95.70% 11.19

Complaints Handling Procedure

You can download our Complaints Handling Procedure document by clicking on the link below:

Rail Ombudsman

Please give us the opportunity to try to resolve your complaint. If you’re unhappy with the response you receive, you have the right to appeal to the Rail Ombudsman. The Rail Ombudsman is there to help resolve ongoing disputes between us and passengers. It’s free to use their services and they are independent of the rail industry. They don’t take sides but just look at the evidence available. They will help us both to try to reach an agreement, but if this doesn’t happen, they will make a decision based on the evidence they’ve received. If you agree with their decision, then we have to act on what they say.

You can appeal to the Rail Ombudsman if:

  • you’re unhappy with our final response to your complaint, which will be contained in a letter or email (sometimes called a ‘deadlock letter’); or
  • we haven’t resolved your complaint within 40 working days of receiving it; and
  • no more than 12 months have passed since we sent you our final response

There are some complaints that the Rail Ombudsman won’t be able to look into, for example, if it’s about the way one of our services has been designed or industry policy. If that’s the case, then they’ll contact you to let you know.

If possible, they will transfer your complaint to another organisation that may be able to help you further, such as Transport Focus and London TravelWatch – the independent consumer watchdogs for the rail industry. They will independently review your complaint and where appropriate, follow things up on your behalf.

Rail Ombudsman contact details



Twitter: @RailOmbudsman


Telephone: 0330 094 0362

Textphone: 0330 094 0363