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We missed the night ferry part of our Rail&Sail connection from London via Harwich to Hoek van Holland due to a series of delayed trains. What are our relevant rights and how do we claim those? The detailed situation is below; perhaps too much detail but I suspect some details may be relevant so I have included it all.

The situation:

  • We have one ticket from the north of England to London Zones 1-6 and one Rail&Sail ticket from London Liverpool Street to Any Dutch Station.
  • Train into London Euston, scheduled arrival 19:14, actual arrival 19:37, 23 minutes late.
  • As a consequence, we missed the 20:00 departure from London Liverpool Street to Harwich International, scheduled to arrive there 21:22, with change in Manningtree (turns out this would have become 21:42).
  • We then took the 20:30 train from London Liverpool Street to Manningtree, aiming to take a taxi from there. Scheduled arrival 21:33, actual arrival 22:00, 27 minutes late. Pre-booked taxi for 22:00 had not arrived by 22:10 so we took the 22:12 train from Manningtree instead.
  • Next train from Manningtree to Harwich International, scheduled arrival 22:28, actual arrival 22:56, 28 minutes late.

At 22:56, no Stena Line personnel were available to assist us, so we booked into a nearby hotel at our own expense.

I fully expect that Stena Line will let us board the day ferry the following morning, but what are our rights regarding (1) delay repay, and (2) compensation for hotel costs? Is this situation covered by CIV?


Edit: Next morning, a member of staff from Stena Line informed me that they guarantee the connection from the train if and only if people board according to the schedule recommended online.

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    So the ticket to get you to London was completely separate from the Rail&Sail booking? Or was everything booked together as one trip? If those were two completely separate trips booked by yourself, i don't think you have any chance to get something from Stena Line. If everything was booked together, e.g. by a travel agent, it might look different. – dunni Jun 2 '17 at 7:50
  • @dunni When you book seperate rail tickets (split ticketing) the rail connection has the same guarantee as when there is a single ticket. AFAIK there is no way to purchase a single ticket from north of London to The Netherlands via Harwich-Hoek van Holland. – gerrit Jun 2 '17 at 9:37
  • Interesting, the Wikipedia article about CIV says: "Passengers travelling via London to connect with an onward international train, or rail inclusive ferry journey (... Hoek van Holland, ...) are able to buy UK domestic segment tickets to the virtual destination London International (CIV), whose station code is LNE. Such London International (CIV) tickets, in principle, are only issued upon presentation of the existing international "CIV"-denoted ticket, but provide additional benefits such as unrestricted peak-time travel and apply the benefits of guaranteed onward connections." – dunni Jun 2 '17 at 9:57
  • Did you book your ticket to London according to this rule? Then it seems quite clear, that you should have a connection guarantee. Otherwise maybe not – dunni Jun 2 '17 at 9:57
  • @dunni No. I was not aware London International (CIV) applies to ferry-inclusive tickets, I thought it only applied to Eurostar. A good lesson for the future, and relevant information for the answer! In the event, Stena Line says we don't have any right in this case because we planned a train later than the one recommended on their website, but I suppose that if one (1) books a train to London International CIV, and (2) plans to connect this to the recommended train by Stena Line, then one should have CIV-relevant rights, otherwise maybe not. – gerrit Jun 2 '17 at 11:26
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+50

I'm afraid you did not construct a "valid itinerary" with the connection between your Euston and Liverpool Street Trains. The minimum connection time between these stations after 1900 is 48 minutes (see here and here: it's the minimum connection time of each station plus the fixed link time by tube). This means that even if this was the train recommended by Greater Anglia (which is at 1932 as per here), and you'd missed it due to a delay on your Euston train, you'd be ineligible for help from the railway companies as you'd not left enough time to connect in the first place. So, to answer your questions:

  1. Regarding your delay repay rights, you're not eligible for anything. This is because the system treats these as two seperate journeys, and you were delayed by 23 minutes on Virgin (whose compensation kicks in at 30) and 27 on Greater Anglia (also 30).

  2. You're definitely not eligible for help with your hotel costs, as you didn't travel on the train recommended by the rail and sail deal, and you didn't leave enough time to connect in London. You should always use a journey planner such as National Rail Enquiries to check your itinerary is valid unless you're very familiar with the behind-the-scenes rules. Your train to Euston orginated at Birmingham New Street, and if you check the National Rail Enquiries journey planner, they suggest travelling on the train half an hour earlier to make the connection to the 2000 train. Had you done this, you'd be home and dry (even without travelling on the recommended connection).

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