Updates for our train travellers on coronavirus (COVID-19) - Refunds & exchanges policies

Conditions can vary every day and are only valid until further updates on our websites (as per train operators' updates).

As train traffic is coming back to near normal in most European countries, and train companies are following strict safety guidelines, we can think of no better mode of transport for a special trip back out into the world. It is worth noting that Rail Europe connects in real time with train operators. This means that all journeys that appear in our search results will be in service and, therefore, can be booked. 

At Rail Europe we care for the health, safety and satisfaction of our customers and, together with train operators, we can help you get back on track again by giving you the main travel prerequisites and all necessary information. We may not be able to embrace everyone we want yet, but we can certainly start to embrace travel again. 

I have already booked and don’t want to travel. Can I get a refund?

This depends very much on the train operator you have booked to travel with. Italo and Eurostar, for example, do not offer any exceptional refunds beyond their standard policy. 

Train operators’ policies change regularly and we will update the details below as soon as we get information. If your train operator is not listed below, then they have not yet offered a refund policy based on coronavirus, but their normal terms and conditions will apply. In some cases, you need to go to the train operator’s website to claim the refunds - we provide all relevant links below. 

Off Peak and Anytime tickets for all journeys purchased up until 06 September 2020 can currently be refunded at no additional cost. However, the terms & conditions of that ticket type still apply. Off Peak and Anytime tickets for all journeys purchased from 07 September 2020 can be refunded with a £10 fee. Advance tickets for all journeys can be refunded at no additional cost if purchased before 23 March 2020, at 07.00 hrs, for travel on or after 23 March 2020. Please note: All other Advance tickets bought after this date are non-refundable. Claims must be submitted prior to the travel date. You can refund or exchange all of these ticket types via your Rail Europe account.

SNCF France and International trains

All TGV, Intercité or connecting TER trains, as well as France-Germany TGV, France-Switzerland TGV (Lyria), France-Spain and France-Italy TGV tickets for travel up until 01 November 2020 are exchangeable and refundable at no extra charge, as long as they are requested prior to travel. For exchanges, if the new fare is more expensive, the customer pays the price difference. You can apply for a full refund via your Rail Europe account before departure. 

France-Spain high-speed TGV

Train services #9700 and #9711 are cancelled until 01 November 2020.  All travellers with tickets for cancelled trains only can request a refund up to 3 months after the date of travel. You can apply for exchanges or refunds via your Rail Europe account.

Thello

Full refunds are being offered to all travellers on Thello trains between Paris and Venice for travel between 10 March - 31 July 2020 and for all trains between Marseille-Nice-Milan between 10 March and 03 June 2020. For refund details see here.

Renfe

Full refund or exchange for all customers wanting to opt out of travel. Valid for all travel until 31 August 2020. Exchange or cancellation of tickets must be done prior to travel dates. Contact us via the "More Help" beacon on our contact page and we will process it for you.

France-Spain high-speed TGV

All France-Spain High Speed TGV tickets for travel up until 01 November 2020 are exchangeable and refundable at no extra charge, as long as they are requested prior to travel. For exchanges, if the new fare is more expensive, the customer pays the difference in price. You can apply for exchanges or refunds via your Rail Europe account.

Italo

Italo offers a free exchange of all tickets for journeys up to 30 June 2020, in the form of a voucher which is valid for one year. Apply directly for refunds on Italo’s websiteand select the category “Refund for health emergency 2020".

Trenitalia

Full refund for all customers opting out of travel for reasons associated with the coronavirus pandemic for requests submitted by 30 June 2020. This also applies to Eurocity trains between Italy and Switzerland or Austria. 

Thello

Full refunds are being offered to all travellers on Thello trains between Paris and Venice for travel from 10 March 2020 and for all trains between Marseille-Nice-Milan between 10 March and 03 June 2020. 

In order to adhere to COVID-19 safety guidelines, the Thello night train service between Paris and Venice has been cancelled until further notice. For refund details see here.

If you want to change your journey times, you can use your original tickets on the same route for travel up until 31 October 2020, as long as the tickets were booked by 13 March 2020. All you have to do when travelling is present the original ticket as well as some ID. 

The application deadline for vouchers was 30 June 2020. DB normal terms and conditions for tickets will apply to applications submitted as of 01 July 2020.

OBB is offering vouchers for travel up to 01 June 2020. The vouchers are valid for 10 years from the date of issue. You can apply on OBB's website which takes you directly to their claim form, then choose "I would like to reimburse a ticket".

See our Thalys or Eurostar entry

See our Thalys or Eurostar entry

Eurostar offers a free exchange of all tickets, in the form of a voucher, for journeys between 13 March and 15 November 2020. Vouchers may be redeemed up until 12 months from the date of issue, for a new Eurostar booking up to six months in advance. You can apply directly on Eurostar’s website. For any other questions, please feel free to contact us. 

Thalys has taken the following commercial measures :

Tickets bought before 28/08 for traffic from 26/08 until the lifting of the travel restrictions. 

Paris <=> Belgium: 

  • Postponement of the trip - compensation price - if requested up to 30 days before departure and depending on the sales horizon. (Same OD, same comfort class)
  • Refund according to ticket price conditions

All tickets with circulation date 21/08 until 4/09:

Germany <=> Brussels:

  • Postponement of the trip - compensation price - if requested up to 30 days before departure and depending on the sales horizon. (Same OD, same comfort class)

All tickets with circulation date 24/08 until 4/09:

Germany <=> Paris:

  • Postponement of the trip - compensation price - if requested up to 30 days before departure and depending on the sales horizon. (Same OD, same comfort class)

For all other destinations:

Exchange and refund according to tariff conditions

  • Mini rate: not exchangeable and non-refundable
  • Standard : Exchangeable at no cost (Covid measure) until the train departure time indicated on the ticket. Any difference in price between the old and the new ticket applies. Refundable at 50% in case of cancellation before the departure time indicated on the ticket. Not refundable after departure.
  • Comfort : Exchangeable at no cost (Covid measure) until the train departure time indicated on the ticket. Any difference in price between the old and the new ticket applies. Refundable at 50% in case of cancellation before the departure time indicated on the ticket. Non-refundable after departure.
  • Premium: 100% refundable in case of cancellation before the departure time indicated on the ticket. Refundable at 50% after departure, within a maximum of 2 months. Exchangeable free of charge until the train departure time indicated on the ticket. Any difference in price between the old and the new ticket applies.
All TGV Lyria for travel up until 01 November 2020 are exchangeable and refundable at no extra charge, as long as they are requested prior to travel. For exchanges, if the new fare is more expensive, the customer pays the difference in price. You can apply for exchanges or refunds via your Rail Europe account.

Are all European trains being cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic?

European train operators are updating their train services all the time as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Many services are being cancelled, sometimes at the last minute. Please check on the train operator’s website for timetable updates. 

Will I be insured for travel in Europe at the moment?

Some travel insurance companies put policy sales on hold during the height of the pandemic but this is changing as each country opens up again. We advise checking with your travel insurance company for any specific terms and conditions before travelling.

Many thanks for your patience as we continue to inform and, hopefully, reassure you, our valued customers.

Rail Europe Customer Support