Travel Information

Passenger's Charter

Our Commitment to Customer Service

Contents

Welcome to our Passenger's Charter

I welcome all our customers to the fifth edition of the Iarnród Éireann Passenger Charter.

At Iarnród Éireann, every customer is important to us whether you travel with us every day or it’s your first journey. The passenger charter represents our commitment to deliver a customer-focused service and explains how we report and measure our performance. The recent introduction of Passenger Rights and Regulations for Rail Travel, Regulation (EC) No 1371/2007 of the European Parliament also outlines specific rights for rail customers and have been incorporated in this charter.

Since we first introduced the passenger charter in 1999, our business and our customers’ expectations have dramatically changed. Online booking, Wi-Fi and social media were futuristic concepts then; today, they are considered basic elements of our facilities for customers. We have upgraded our trains and modernised our customer systems and facilities, but this change shows how we must review our standards to meet your expectations.

Since 1999, independent auditors have examined our performance and we are proud to have improved over that time. We publish our performance ever four weeks in your station and online.

The commitment of my Iarnród Éireann colleagues across the country will allow us meet our promises to you in this charter, and to continue improving customer service into the future.

David Franks

Chief Executive

Our Commitment to you                                               

Our People

Iarnród Éireann has customer service, telephone sales and disability assistance staff available to assist you with any queries you may have on (01) 8366 222 (Mon-Fri 08.30-18.00). We also have staff on hand at our main stations to help you. We expect our staff to be helpful, courteous and professional at all times.

Customer information

We are committed to providing you with clear, comprehensive and accurate information before travelling with us and during your journey.

We offer this information in a range of formats and media:

  • Customer Information, including Passenger Assistance, Phone Line, (01)8366 222 or +353 1 8366 222 from outside the Republic of Ireland
  • Our website  www.irishrail.ie
  • Station staff
  • @IrishRail Twitter 
  • Iarnród Éireann (Irish Rail) Facebook page
  • Iarnród Éireann (Irish Rail) apps: iOS and Android
  • Printed timetables – available at 18 main stations and PDF versions are available at www.irishrail.ie

The Enterprise Passenger’s Charter for the Dublin/Belfast cross border service sets out standards for this line in more detail. Copies of this charter are available at stations on the route and online here: Enterprise Charter

Buying your Ticket or Smart card

There are several ways you can buy a ticket to travel with us.

The lowest intercity fares are available online by booking in advance at www.irishrail.ie . You can also reserve premium, first class and standard class tickets online. Phone bookings, using a credit or debit card can be made between 08.30 and 18.00hrs Monday to Friday, excluding public holidays, at (01) 8366 222; (or +353 1 8366 222 from outside the Republic of Ireland).

Commuters can avail of great savings with Taxsaver tickets available through participating employers on a personalized Leap Card. See www.taxsaver.ie for further details.

Customers in the Dublin and Cork city areas are advised to purchase a Leap Card giving savings of up to a 25% on single fares for adults, students and children between 4 and up to their 19th birthday. Leap Cards are available from Ticket Vending Machines (TVM) in all relevant stations. You can top up your Leap Card using cash or credit/debit card at any TVM or online at www.leapcard.ie.

You can buy your train ticket in a number of ways:

  • Online at www.irishrail.ie, for Intercity rail travel
  • At a ticket office.Check station opening hours on http://www.irishrail.ie/travel-information/your-travel
  • At a ticket vending machine at the station
  • By phone at (01) 8366 222 Monday to Friday 08.30hrs to 1800hrs (8.30am to 6.00pm).
  • Leap Cards may be purchased from: www.leapcard.ie 
  • Ticket vending machines in DART and Dublin commuter stations
  • Leap Card agent shops. For an up to date list, visit www.payzone.ie
  • Child Leap Card 16-18 can only be purchased online. See Leap Card for details.
At the Station Ticket Office

Our staff will help you choose the most appropriate ticket for your journey. Outside our busy peak hours, we aim to serve you within three minutes. During peak hours, it might take longer, but we still aim to serve you within seven minutes. This excludes exceptional circumstances. E.g. football matches, events etc.

At Unstaffed Stations with Station Ticket Vending Machines

You can buy a range of tickets from the ticket vending machines (TVM) that are in most stations. When buying a ticket from a TVM, you must make your outward journey on the same day as you buy this type of ticket.

Passengers with Special Needs

We welcome passengers with special needs, and we are committed to providing a service that everyone can use. Many of our stations and trains are accessible for passengers with special needs.We provide designated wheelchair spaces on our Intercity fleet.

We provide on-board changing facilities for parents travelling with babies and small children (except on DART services).

Full details of facilities in each station are in our ‘Guide for Rail Passengers with Disabilities’, which is available free online here.

 We can accommodate wheelchairs or powered scooters up to 700mm in width and 1200mm long (including footplates) height 1375mm including occupant a maximum weight of 300kg including occupant.     

To help make your journey go as smoothly as possible, we now offer a facility where customers can arrange assistance at any station by contacting our Call Centre on 01 8366 222 (+353 1 8366 222 from outside Ireland), Monday to Friday 0830 to 18.00hrs (excluding public holidays). We will try to give assistance at all times, but we would ask for 24 hours’ notice before your journey to allow us make any special arrangements necessary

Equality and Diversity

We are committed to treating all customers equally and making sure that your rights under the Equal Status Act 2000 are fully respected. The Equal Status Act covers issues including: disability, age, gender, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, religious belief, race and membership of the Traveller Community.

Passengers with free travel facilities

If you have a free travel pass issued by the Department of Social Protection, you are entitled to travel free on all Iarnród Éireann's scheduled services listed in the current timetable.

For Intercity travel, please present your free travel pass or Public Services Card (PSC) before boarding at the ticket desk on the day you are travelling. We will then give you a rail ticket(s) to travel, which you must show along with your free travel pass to any Iarnród Éireann official who asks to see it. If the ticket desk is shut or there is no ticket office at your originating station, you may board your train, as long as you are in possession of your valid free travel pass or PSC.

For travel on Dublin Commuter, DART and Cork Commuter services, hold your PSC on the smartcard reader at gate/platform at entry and exit. Spouses and Companions require a ticket to travel.  For further details click here.

At our stations and on our trains

We do our best to ensure our stations and trains are safe, clean, and comfortable and have the appropriate facilities for you to enjoy your journey.

Getting a seat on board

Intercity

We monitor train loadings and our advance online bookings, and allocate the number of carriages based on this information. This helps us to best match demand and capacity for all customers on Intercity services.

Therefore, we recommend that you reserve seats by booking online at www.irishrail.ie, or by phoning (01)8366 222 (+353 1 8366 222 from outside Ireland) during business hours 08.30 – 18.00, Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays). 

DART and Commuter Services

Commuter trains are designed and operated to carry the maximum number of passengers safely and reliably, particularly at peak times. Passengers on DART and commuter trains may have to stand during hours of peak demand. We will allocate our fleet and review our timetables to minimise standing times for our customers.

Bikes on Trains

Suburban and DART services

“Fold up” bikes can be carried on all services free of charge, subject to space availability. Please be sure all fold up bicycles are folded properly. Other bikes can be carried at off peak times. For further information click here.

Bicycles on InterCity Trains

All Intercity trains have bicycle carriage facilities.  Check our website bicycle information page for the most up-to-date information on bringing your bike on the train. 

Animals on trains

Dogs and pets

Please check our pets page for the most up-to-date information on bringing dogs and other pets on the train:

Guide dogs and assistance dogs are permitted to travel on all our services without restriction.  They must, though, be clearly identifiable either by a special jacket or harness, to distinguish them as working dogs and not pets.

Quality Standards

Trains

Cleanliness

We will make sure that all trains are thoroughly cleaned every day before they are used. Where possible during the day, we will make sure that trains are cleaned for the start of each new journey. The exteriors of all trains are scheduled to be washed at least three times a week.

Catering

There is a catering service on most Intercity trains. Details of when the service is available are included in our public timetable.

We will try to let you know before the train leaves if the advertised on-train catering service is unavailable. We will do this by station announcements.

If you are delayed for over 30 minutes while travelling with us, we will offer you a complimentary non-alcoholic drink. If you are delayed for 45 minutes or more, we will also offer snack food if the train has catering facilities and stocks available.

Public address systems

We will keep our public address systems in good working order and will use them to keep you informed. If you experience a problem with onboard announcements, please e-mail onboardissues@irishrail.ie

If service delays and disruptions occur, we will tell you why and how long we expect them to last.  

Wi-Fi

Wireless internet access is available free of charge on all our services. TheWi-Fi support team are available to help if you experience any problems.  If you have a problem, call the Wi-Fi Support team on 0818 333 388 (Monday-Friday 06.00 - 23.00) or email support@fleetconnect.ie

If you have a Wi Fi problem on Cross Border Enterprise services, you can email our service provider, Nomad Digital on  nirailways-ots@nomadrail.com or enterprise-ots@nomadrail.com, Tel: 1850 444222

Lost Property

If you lose something while travelling with us, we will do our best to return it to you. Please report your loss to any of our stations or contact our Customer care team at (01) 8366 222.

Phone enquiries

We aim to answer 9 out of 10 calls to our central number within 60 seconds. That number is (01) 8366222 and the hours of business are: Monday to Friday, 08.30 to 18.00 hrs. 

Stations

Customer facilities

Wherever possible, there will be comfortable waiting areas at our stations that protect you from the weather. We aim to make facilities accessible to everyone.

At stations that are staffed, we will inspect all public areas throughout the day and keep them clean and litter free. At stations that are not staffed, we will inspect stations at least three times a week. At all stations, we will clean toilets regularly.

Cleanliness

Our website, posters and information on display will be checked regularly to make sure they’re accurate.  We will use our website and posters to let you know in advance about planned maintenance work. We continuously monitor our ticketing equipment and respond to faults as soon as possible. If you find an issue with ticketing equipment, please contact our Customer Contact Centre, Ph. (01) 8366 222.

Information at Our Stations

We will provide you with clear, up-to-date information on our services.

We will keep any electronic passenger information and public address systems in good working order and use them to keep you informed, especially in case of delays.

If service delays and disruptions occur, you will be kept informed of their causes and how long they are expected to last.

Printed timetables will be available at 18 key stations: Station Timetables

Customer Service

We know how important it is to you that you receive good customer service from our staff at all times.

We expect our staff to:

  • be polite and helpful;
  • consider your safety and comfort;
  • wear their appropriate uniform;
  • tell you about delays or changes to services;
  • give you the best value ticket for your journey.

Help Us To Help You

Help us to help you

To ensure you have the correct ticket and to make your journey as safe and as pleasant as possible for you and your fellow passengers, we ask you to please do the following:

  • Allow enough time before your journey to buy a ticket.
  • Have the correct ticket or tagged-on travel card and ID, if required, for your journey.
  • Make sure your ticket is valid for the journey – see the note on Valid Tickets at the bottom of this list.
  • Do not sit in seats that are shown as ‘reserved’ on the overhead visual display or by other means.
  • Fold up prams/buggies on peak time services.
  • Arrive at least 20 minutes before your Intercity train is due to leave.
  • Be on the platform at least 2 minutes before your DART/Suburban train departs to allow for safe boarding.
  • Walk, don't run - for everyone's safety.
  • Stay behind the yellow lines on the platforms. Let people get off the train before you get on.
  • Always keep your ticket ready for inspection and for exiting stations with automatic barriers.
  • Put your luggage only in the areas provided and do not block the aisles, seats, bike racks or wheelchair spaces.
  • Leave toilets as clean as you find them.
  • Please do not smoke or use E-cigarettes. Trains and enclosed platforms are a smoke free environment. Smoke only where it is permitted on open platforms.
  • Use the litter bins provided.
  • Do not leave litter on the floors, tables or seats of trains or stations.
  • Do not put your feet on the seats.
  • Give up your seat to customers with special needs.
  • Do not bring alcohol on board designated alcohol-free services and where permitted, drink responsibly. See www.irishrail.ie  for further details.

Valid tickets

  • Iarnród Éireann web tickets must be used under the terms and conditions under which they are purchased.
  • Tickets bought at the ticket office or from the ticket vending machine are valid for outward travel on the date shown on the ticket and return portions of tickets must be used within the date stated on the ticket
  • Passengers travelling on tickets issued under the Department of Social Protection free travel scheme must have appropriate ID with them.
  • E-purse cards are available in the Dublin short hop zone and Cork commuter areas
  • Passengers travelling without a valid ticket or pass will be liable to pay a fixed payment notice, which will be more than the cost of a standard ticket.

 Please note:

We will not tolerate abusive behaviour or assaults on Iarnród Éireann staff or other customers, and we will seek to prosecute offenders under our bye-laws.

If you are travelling with your bicycle, please note the following:

  • Customers should walk with their bicycles when they are in the station. It is not permitted to cycle in stations or on platforms.
  • Customers should use ramps and lifts where available, rather than stairs within stations to gain access to platforms.
  • Customers should stay with their bicycles on board trains.
  • No motorised bicycles are allowed on trains.
  • No bicycles with attached trailers are allowed on trains.
  • Always use available bicycle storage spaces provided.
  • Never obstruct exits or passageways.

Service Disruptions

Planned engineering works:

During the year, we have to undertake works to maintain or upgrade structures, track and signals. In these circumstances, we may have to change train times, or substitute trains with coaches or buses. We will always try to keep disruption to your journey to a minimum and give you as much notice as possible. It is most likely that these works will take place at weekends or public holidays. If there are planned disruptions, details will be available online at www.irishrail.ie and punctuality will be measured based on the altered times.

Short notice engineering works:

Occasionally, we have to carry out engineering works at short notice. We will provide you with information as far in advance as possible.

Measurement of performance and publication of results:

We know how important reliability and timekeeping are to you, and we want all trains to run as scheduled. We are committed to hitting the following targets at a minimum. We will publish our performance results every 4 weeks.

     1. Punctuality

     The National Transport Authority (NTA) defines the criteria for punctuality:

  • An InterCity or commuter train  is punctual if it is on time or within 10 minutes of its scheduled time
  • A DART is punctual if it is on time or within 5 minutes of its scheduled time.
  • Latest figures in respect of punctuality and reliability can be viewed on our website here. Punctuality figures include delays outside of Iarnrod Éireann’s control.
     2. Reliability                                                                                                                     
  • Reliability refers to whether the train operates or not.

Ticket Refunds

Refunds for tickets purchased at ticket offices or ticket vending machines

When you buy tickets on the day of travel and you decide not to take the train, we will give you a full refund provided you return your non-validated ticket to the ticket office where the ticket was bought within 45 minutes of purchase.

If the booking office or station is unstaffed, you can apply for a refund to: 

Refund Section,

Connolly Station,

Amiens Street,

Dublin 1,

D01 V6V6

Please submit all relevant information in relation to your claim for a refund.

Refunds for tickets purchased online

If you reserve your ticket online, the following refund rules apply:

Low and Seat Only Reservations

Low Fare
No Refund
No Cancellation

Your ticket is valid on the selected service only. No change or refund is possible.

Semi Flexible

Semi Flexible
Modification subject to fee
Allows travel on train before or after

Amend or Cancel up to the day before departure or until the ticket is collected at the station, subject to 20% fee.
Without changing your booking, you can travel on the train before or after your booking, subject to availability.

Flexible

Flexible
No modification fee
Full Flexibility on day of travel

Amend or Cancel up to 90 minutes before departure or until the ticket is collected at the station.
On the day of travel, without changing your booking, you can travel on all services on this route, subject to availability

First Class

First Class
No modification fee
Full Flexibility on day of travel

Amend/Cancel up to 90 minutes before departure or until the ticket is collected at the station.
On the day of travel, without changing your booking, you can travel on all services on this route, subject to availability.

Online bookings for special services or promotions have their own conditions for refunds. Refund policies for these are available when you are booking.

Refunds for E-purse Cards / remaining travel credit

If you have finished using your Leap card you can claim for a refund of any remaining travel credit.  You may also be eligible to receive a refund of any deposit paid at the time of card purchase.  Visit www.leapcard.ie for more information and to apply for a refund. 

Refunds for tickets bought at other outlets

If you did not buy your ticket from us, you should return it to the place where you bought it. They will arrange any refund due and may apply an administration charge

Changes and cancellations

If you have questions about ticket changes or cancellations, please call the Iarnród Éireann Call Centre on (01) 8366 222 (or +353 1 8366 222 from outside Republic of Ireland).Opening hours are 08.30 to 18.00 hours Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays).

Compensation Payments

Discounts if you are delayed

If, you are more than 60 minutes late arriving at your destination station, we will offer you discount vouchers to use when you buy future tickets or, issue cash compensation under EC Regulation 1371.

The value of the vouchers, or cash compensation*, is based on the length of delay and the fare paid for the single journey affected, as follows:

Delay                                    

Compensation

If you’re delayed by 60 to 120 minutes             

50% of the value of the single journey in vouchers or 25% in cash.

If you’re delayed by 120 minutes or more        

100% of the value of the single journey in vouchers or 50% in cash

* We will not pay cash compensation for amounts under €4.

Charter Refund Form.pdf 

Discounts if we fail to give you the service you pay for.

If the seat you reserved is not available, and there is no other available seat of the same standard on the same train, we will refund you the fare of your single journey back to the card on which the booking was made.

Cancellation of your train, delay before you started your journey or during it.

 If your train is cancelled, or 60 minutes or more late, then we offer you the choice between the following options:

  • You may abandon your journey before starting it and receive a full refund of your fare or apply for a refund if your ticket was booked online or via our telephone sales line.
  • You may discontinue a journey you have already started and receive a refund for the part of the journey not made
  • If the journey you began has become pointless, you may return immediately to the starting point of your journey by train and receive a full refund of the fare or apply for a refund if your ticket was booked online or via our telephone sales line.
Missing the last connection of the day

If you are not able to reach your final rail destination the same day because you missed a connection, you may be entitled to compensation for the reasonable costs of hotel accommodation and of notifying relatives or other persons expecting you. This only applies if the cause of the delay was within the control of the railway.

How to claim your discount vouchers or refund.

To claim any discounts or refunds you’re entitled to, you need to fill in an application form, which is available from the ticket offices in main stations or from the PDF below.

Foirm Cairt Do Phaisinéirí.pdf

Charter Refund Form.pdf

When you apply for discount vouchers you must:

  •          attach your ticket to the completed form;
  •          include the reservation number if your ticket was purchased online – we will refund the equivalent back to the card on which the booking was made. 
European Legislation - Your Rights

When making a journey by rail, your rights are outlined under the Passenger Charter. The recent introduction of Passenger Rights and Regulations for Rail Travel, Regulation (EC) No 1371/2007 of the European Parliament also outlines specific rights for rail customers, which have been incorporated in this charter. 

If you are not satisfied with how our Customer Care office has responded to a complaint made under Regulation (EC) No 1371/2007, you can contact the National Transportation Authority (NTA) directly here to have your complaint reviewed independently.

Putting Things Right

We welcome any comments and suggestions that you have about improving our service. If you were not happy about any part of our service, we would like to know about it.

Please contact us via our website. Alternatively, you can write to Customer Care, Connolly Station, Amiens Street, Dublin 1. D01 V6V6. or phone us at (01)8366 222 (or +353 1 8366 222 from outside the Republic of Ireland) Mon-Fri. 0830- 18.00hrs.

When you contact Customer Care to make a query or complaint, please include as much information as possible. Include information such as:

  • Date and time of travel
  • Where you were leaving from and travelling to
  • Your reservation number for online tickets
  • Your Leap card number if necessary
  • Your phone number in case we need more information       

 We aim to respond to 90% of queries and complaints within 3 working days after date of receipt. However, if there is going to be a delay, we will let you know why, and we’ll also tell you when you may expect to receive a detailed reply.

We want to be able to resolve your issues as quickly as possible. Each week, we review all feedback received and report on key issues so that they can be addressed as a matter of urgency.

In all cases, we will give you a full explanation and an apology if we have made a mistake.

If you are not satisfied with how our Customer Care office has responded to your complaint, you can request that we escalate your case to a higher authority within Iarnród Éireann.

Listening to You

Iarnród Éireann Irish Rail welcomes your comments and suggestions to help us to improve services and facilities for our customers To be sure that we are giving you the level of service you expect, an independent research company will conduct research twice a year to measure our actual performance against the targets published in this charter. They will also verify how well you think we are doing.

Conditions of Carriage

This charter does not create any new legal relationship with you nor does it affect your legal rights or obligations. These are shown in our Conditions of Carriage booklet available here.

Where to Contact Us

Customer information for all services: www.irishrail.ie

Customer Contact Centre:

Monday to Friday: 08.30 to 18.00 hrs. (Excluding public holidays.)

Ph(01) 8366 222 (or +353 1 8366 222from outside the Republic of Ireland).

Please contact us via our website.

Please Note

This Charter reflects the standards of service and initiatives outlined in the ‘Principles of Quality Customer Service for Customers and Clients of the Public Service’ set out in Appendix C of the Code of Practice for the Governance of State Bodies published by the Department of Finance.

The information in this charter is correct at time of going on display, May 2017. Any further updates or changes will be incorporated on our website customer charter at www.irishrail.ie

Sources - Your rights are based on the Uniform Rules concerning the Contract of International Carriage of Passengers by Rail (CIV), Regulation (EC) No 1371/2007 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 October 2007 on rail passengers’ rights and obligations, the General Conditions of Carriage CIV/PRR and our Special Conditions of Carriage.