France: Strike action 2018

Trains in France are currently disrupted due to rail strikes. Industrial action started on 22 March and is ongoing.

Most services on strike dates are now running as normal and there is potential for the strike to finish before the 29 June. We update this article with all new information we receive. Please read it carefully before contacting us.

The strike is related to reforms to pay and conditions of railway staff that is being negotiated between SNCF and unions.

IN THIS ARTICLE

Strike dates

Most services on strike dates are now running as normal because fewer members of staff are on strike, but some cancellations and delays are still anticipated on strike dates.

The strike is currently scheduled for the following dates, marked as X. However, strike dates may be subject to change, particularly in June.

Checking the status of your train

If you are due to travel during on a strike date, you should check the status of your train before travel in one of the following ways:

Trains within France: Search the SNCF departure board - Information about anticipated delays/cancellations is available up to 24 hours before departure.

Trains to/from France: Check the information about specific services below. You can also check the status of your train via the rail operator's departure board. Information about anticipated delays/cancellations is available up to 24 hours before departure.

If your train is cancelled, it's a good idea to take a screenshot of the page that includes the train number and date. This might be useful for a travel insurance claim later.

Please note that Loco2 is not responsible for the information available via departure boards. This service is provided by the rail operators so we can't guarantee it.

Information about specific services

Domestic SNCF services

Affected services
  • SNCF does not provide information about specific cancellations or delays to Loco2.
  • You should check the status of your train by searching for it on the SNCF departure board - status updates are published for all SNCF services by 17:00 the day before travel at the latest.
  • SNCF has published a revised timetable for all TGV for travel up to end of June with TGV services open for sale are scheduled to run. The status of any TGV trains closed for sale will be confirmed at 17:00 2 days before travel.
  • SNCF has finalised the timetable for Intercity and TGV for travel up to 22 June.
  • If your train is due to run as normal, please arrive at the station in plenty of time. Note that trains may be busier than usual so seat reservations can't be guaranteed.
Refunds and exchanges

Customers with tickets on cancelled SNCF services for travel on strike days until the 29 June have the following options:

  • SNCF - including TGV, Intercity trains and connected regional fares
    • Exchange tickets at the station (subject to availability)
    • Exchange tickets by calling SNCF directly on +33 892 35 35 35 (select #85 for English speaking. International calling and extra charges may apply). We can't guarantee that SNCF will be able to process all exchanges. If they are unable to complete your request, you should consider one of the other options.
    • Apply for a full refund via your Loco2 account. Please see Refunding your ticket for instructions.
  • TER (regional tickets)
    • Exchanges aren't possible but tickets on regional TER services are valid for travel up to 10 days after the date shown on your ticket.
    • For tickets that include TGV/Intercity and TER, apply for a refund via your Loco2 account. Please see Refunding your ticket for instructions.
    • For tickets that only have a TER segment, email us at hello@loco2.com and we will submit a claim on your behalf.
    For travel on non-strike dates and on services scheduled to run, the normal fare conditions currently remain in place for all tickets.

Eurostar

Affected services

You can check the status of your train on the Eurostar website. In addition, Eurostar has confirmed the following specific information:

22/23 June and 27/28 June

  • Eurostar services are running as scheduled. 
Refunds and exchanges

Customers with tickets on cancelled direct Eurostar services e.g. London-Paris/Brussels have the following options:

  • Exchange tickets with Eurostar staff at the station. Arrive as early as possible to arrange this.
  • Exchange tickets on Eurostar's "Manage my trip" page. Eurostar has some technical problems with this tool so customers who are unable to exchange their tickets online should consider one of the other options.
  • Exchange tickets via this Eurostar form. Please include "STRIKE" in the subject line so Eurostar can prioritise your enquiry. We recommend including a couple of revised travel dates/times in your request in case your first option is not available. Please note that we can't guarantee that Eurostar will process exchanges submitted via this form.
  • Apply for a refund by emailing us at hello@loco2.com and we will submit a claim on your behalf. Please note that Eurostar will not accept claims for tickets on Eurostar services scheduled to run.
  • Customers wishing to cancel or exchange tickets on services scheduled to run may do so as per the fare conditions.

Customers with cancelled Eurostar/TGV services e.g. London-Nice for travel on strike days until the 29 June have the following options:

  • Exchange tickets with SNCF or Eurostar staff at the station. Arrive as early as possible to arrange this.
  • Apply for a refund by emailing us at hello@loco2.com and we will submit a claim on your behalf.
  • Customers wishing to cancel or exchange tickets on services on non-strike dates and services scheduled to run may do so as per the fare conditions.

France - Switzerland (TGV Lyria)

Affected services
  • We do not have information about any delays or cancellations.
  • You can check the status of your train on the TGV Lyria website
  • You can find a list of cancelled/changed services on the TGV Lyria website.
Refunds and exchanges

Customers with tickets on a cancelled TGV Lyria service for travel on strike dates until the 29 June have the following options:

  • Exchange TGV Lyria tickets at the station (subject to availability)
  • Refund TGV Lyria ticket via your Loco2 account. Please see Refunding your ticket for instructions.
  • Exchange tickets by calling SNCF directly on +33 892 35 35 35 (select #85 for English speaking. International calling and extra charges may apply). We can't guarantee that SNCF will be able to process all exchanges. If they are unable to complete your request, you should consider one of the other options.
  • Customers wishing to cancel or exchange tickets on services for travel on non-strike dates and services scheduled to run may do so as per the fare conditions.

France - Belgium (Thalys)

Affected services
Refunds and exchanges

Customers on cancelled services who decide not to travel have the following options:

  • Exchange Thalys tickets at the station to an earlier/later service (subject to availability).
  • Refund your Thalys tickets via your Loco2 account as per the fare conditions. Please see Refunding your ticket for instructions.
  • Customers wishing to cancel or exchange tickets on services scheduled to run may do so as per the fare conditions.

France - Italy (Thello)

Affected services
  • Thello nights trains may be substituted by coaches from Paris-Milan and Milan-Paris. Passengers travelling beyond Milan will be directed by towards Thello trains by staff in Milan. You can check if you train is replaced by a bus on the Thello website.
  • Passengers who want to travel on the replacement services should present themselves at the departure station at least 40 minutes before the scheduled time departure. Thello staff will show passengers to the coaches and issue new tickets if necessary. Customers who booked sleeper cabins but decide to travel by bus can submit a claim to Thello for the difference in cost.
  • In the event that the coach arrives at your destination later than scheduled and you miss an onward connection, you should present your tickets to staff at the connecting railway station. They will seek to accommodate you on a later train if necessary.
Refunds and exchanges
  • Passengers who do not want to travel on the replacement service can request a refund by completing this online form before departure.
  • Customers wishing to cancel or exchange tickets on services scheduled to run as normal may do so as per the fare conditions.

France - Italy (TGV)

Affected services
  • We do not have information about any delays or cancellations.
  • You can check the status of your train by searching for it on the SNCF website. Note that SNCF tool may not show all stations outside France, but it will confirm if the train is due to run.
Refunds and exchanges

Customers with tickets on cancelled TGV services for travel on strike dates until the 29 June have the following options:

  • Exchange TGV tickets at the station (subject to availability)
  • Refund TGV ticket via your Loco2 account. Please see Refunding your ticket for instructions.
  • Exchange tickets by calling SNCF directly on +33 892 35 35 35 (select #85 for English speaking. International calling and extra charges may apply). We can't guarantee that SNCF will be able to process all exchanges. If they are unable to complete your request, you should consider one of the other options.
  • Customers wishing to cancel or exchange tickets on services for travel on non-strike dates and on services scheduled to run may do so as per the fare conditions.

France - Spain (Renfe-SNCF)

Affected services

Renfe-SNCF has confirmed the following changes to their service:

Thursday 21 June

  • Train 9726 Barcelona - Toulouse is cancelled.
  • Train 9724 Marseille - Madrid is cancelled.
  • All other services are scheduled to run as normal.

Friday 22 June and Saturday 23 June

  • Train 9704 and 9706 Barcelona - Paris are scheduled to run as normal.
  • Train 9713 and 9715 Paris - Barcelona are scheduled to run as normal.
  • All other services are cancelled.

Sunday 24 June

  • Train 9729 Toulouse - Barcelona is cancelled.
  • Train 9731 Marseille - Madrid is cancelled. 
  • All other services are scheduled to run as normal.

Tuesday 26 June

  • Train 9726 Barcelona - Toulouse is closed for sale and we are awaiting information about any delays or cancellations.
  • Train 9724 Marseille - Madrid is closed for sale and we are awaiting information about any delays or cancellations.
  • All other services are scheduled to run as normal.

Wednesday 27 June and Thursday 28 June

  • Train 9704 and 9706 Barcelona - Paris are scheduled to run as normal.
  • Train 9713 and 9715 Paris - Barcelona are scheduled to run as normal.
  • All other services are closed for sale and we are awaiting information about any delays or cancellations.

Friday 29 June

  • Train 9729 Toulouse - Barcelona is closed for sale and we are awaiting information about any delays or cancellations.
  • Train 9731 Marseille - Madrid is closed for sale and we are awaiting information about any delays or cancellations.
  • All other services are scheduled to run as normal.

All other days in June until 29 June

  • All services are scheduled to run as normal.

Refunds and exchanges

Customers with tickets on Renfe-SNCF services on strike dates for travel up to the 29 June have the following options:

  • Exchange Renfe-SNCF tickets at the station (subject to availability)
  • Refund Renfe-SNCF ticket via your Loco2 account. Please see Refunding your ticket for instructions. In some instances, a cancellation fee may be applied. You can refund your ticket via your Loco2 account and submit a claim for the cancellation fee via this Renfe form selecting "AVE" and type of request "Complaint".
  • Customers wishing to cancel or exchange tickets on services for travel on non-strike dates and services scheduled to run may do so as per the fare conditions.

France/Belgium - Germany (DB-SNCF and DB)

Affected services
  • We do not have information about any delays or cancellations on the DB-SNCF network.
  • Eurostar services between London and Brussels are subject to cancellations (see Eurostar). This may affect London-Germany trains.
  • You can check the status of your train on the Deutsche Bahn, Eurostar and SNCF website.
Refunds and exchanges
  • Customers on cancelled services can submit a refund request via this Deutsche Bahn form.
  • Customers on services that are due to run as scheduled may do so as per the fare conditions via your Loco2 account.
  • Deutsche Bahn will assist customers with Deutsche Bahn tickets directly. To inquire about exchanges customers can contact the service centre under +49 1805 905 805 by quoting the 'Auftragsnummer' which can be found on your Deutsche Bahn ticket.

All other rail operators

Affected services
  • Other rail operators such as Trenitalia and Italo in Italy and the UK rail operators are not affected by the strike.
Refunds and exchanges
  • Customers wishing to cancel or exchange tickets may do so as per the fare conditions.

Refunds for connecting services are only permitted as per the fare conditions of your ticket. We recommend that you submit a claim to your travel insurer if you miss connections for trains not affected by the strike, or incur any additional costs.

If you experience a delay

If you experience a delay to your journey, please speak to staff on the train or at the station who are likely to have the most up to date information about how to proceed. Bear the following tips in mind:

  • If possible, you should seek to have your ticket validated by a member of staff as proof of delay as this will help ensure you can travel on subsequent connecting services.
  • Retain all tickets for the duration of your journey, and keep them until you return home as they may be required for a claim for compensation.
  • If you find information online about cancellations or delays, it's a good idea to take a screenshot of the page including the train number and date. It may be useful for a travel insurance claim later.
  • Make a note of what time you arrive, and the departure/arrival time of trains you travel on, if not your booked train
  • If you incur any unavoidable additional costs (including any new train tickets) you should keep all receipts as it may be possible to use them as the basis for a compensation claim upon your return.

How long do claims take?

It's a busy time at SNCF's claims department and claims currently take over 2 months to be processed.

  • If we have submitted a claim on your behalf please rest assured that we are following up on your claim on a regular basis and we will provide updates for individual cases as soon as we have news.
  • Any claims are assessed by the rail operators on a case by case basis and refunds can't be guaranteed for tickets on services scheduled to/did run. We recommend customers due to travel to use their tickets and to exchange tickets at stations in case of delays or cancellations.
  • Customers who would like to cancel their trip and have travel insurance should consider submitting a claim to the insurer as many insurers process claims quicker.
  • Customers who would like to us to submit a claim for SNCF or Eurostar tickets must send us a refund request via email no later than 20 days after travel. Please keep hold of any collected tickets as they need to be returned to the rail operator.
  • We recommend submitting claims for any additional costs to the travel insurer.

Although strike action is outside the control of Loco2, we are sorry about any disruption to your travel and we will do all we can to assist you in making alternative arrangements.

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