Photo: Deutsche Bahn AG
The European Commission is updating the European rules on rail passenger rights to better protect train travellers in case of delays, cancellations or discrimination. Rail passengers should be fully protected no matter where they travel in the EU. The Commission also wants to guarantee adequate passenger information and to significantly improve the rights of passengers with disabilities or reduced mobility. At the same time, the Commission’s proposal is proportionate and recognises that rail operators can, under strict circumstances, be exempted from having to compensate passengers in the event of delay.
Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc said: “Thanks to the EU passengers have a full set of rights no matter where they travel in the EU. Yet there are still too many European train travellers and commuters who aren’t properly informed about their rights. That is what we want to fix with our new proposal. I am confident that our initiative will strengthen the sector, striking the right balance between the protection of travellers and the competitiveness of the rail sector.”
The Commission’s proposal updates the existing rules on rail passenger rights in five key areas:
The Commission’s proposal must now be examined and adopted by the European Parliament and the Council (i.e. the EU Member States) before entering into force.
The single market for passenger rail transport is currently in development with the planned introduction of competition onto domestic markets. A high quality of rail services and the protection of users’ rights are essential to fulfil the objective to increase the share of rail transport in comparison to other modes of transport.
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