Great Train Journeys Advice due to COVID-19

Tuesday, 26 May 2020

Updated 26th May

Due to the current level of inquiry there may be delays in replying we are prioritising inquiry based on customers departing within 14  days and will be in touch with you ASAP. 

 

We will be proactively reaching out to customers whose trains have been cancelled or if travel is not possible in order of departure. 

Please contact the Great Train Journeys team at gtj@raileurope.com.au/gtj@raileurope.co.nz

These terms are subject to change at any time. We will continue to evaluate the situation.

Journey Beyond

For Journey Beyond's official statement and policy please click here

Journey Beyond have postponed services to 30th September 2020, please read below to view the credit available to your booking:

  • The Ghan, Indian Pacific and The Overland will be suspended until 31 May 2020.  Guests with travel booked through to 31 May 2020 will be provided with a credit to the value of 110% AUD of their original booking to re-book their travel for a later date, up to 31 December 2022.
  • On 29th April Journey Beyond confirmed The Ghan, Indian Pacific and The Overland will be suspended until 30 June 2020. Guests with travel booked 1 June 2020 - 30 June 2020 will be provided with a credit to the value of 100% AUD of their original booking to re-book their travel for a later date, up to 31 December 2022.
  • On 04th June Journey Beyond confirmed The Ghan, Indian Pacific and The Overland will be suspended until 31 July 2020. Guests with travel booked 1 July 2020 - 31 July 2020 will be provided with a credit to the value of 100% AUD of their original booking to re-book their travel for a later date, up to 31 December 2022.
  • On 08th July Journey Beyond confirmed The Ghan services will be suspended until 29 August and Indian Pacific will be suspended until 31 August 2020. Guests with travel booked 1 August 2020 - 31 August 2020 will be provided with a credit to the value of 100% AUD of their original booking to re-book their travel for a later date, up to 31 December 2022.
  • On 30th July Journey Beyond confirmed the Indian Pacific will be suspended until 30 September 2020. Guests with travel booked 1 September 2020 - 30 September 2020 will be provided with a credit to the value of 100% AUD of their original booking to re-book their travel for a later date, up to 31 December 2022.
  • Please note: the 2021 season is now open and ready to book for services to 30th November 2021. Please note payment T&C's may differ for the new season and will be advised at the time of booking. Note that RAIL ONLY is currently available, all package and ancillary products will be released later in the year for departures after the 31st March. 
  • Guests will receive up to 110% of the money receipted which could apply to a deposit or total booking fare.
  • Credit is available to be used on all third-party products and upgrades. Please note, refunds will not be allocated for remaining credits.
  • Bookings due to travel before 30th September 2020 can have their final balance payment extended until 21 days prior to departure on request. For bookings travelling past the 30th September 2020, it will be standard payment due dates.
  • There are no amendment fees for guests requesting date changes that were due to travel on dates affected by suspended services. Where bookings have been placed in credit, date changes can be made up to 45 days prior to departure.
  • Journey Beyond are now working with a reduced workforce, there may be delays in replying to your queries.

 

For International Passengers: Customers travelling from outside of Australia to start their journey on The Ghan/Indian Pacific, please see details below for departures JULY- DECEMBER 2020

Rail Europe and Journey Beyond recognise that International border restrictions are likely to remain in place for some time. Therefore, we wanted to provide you with some options for your 2020 bookings to assist you to either re-book or in some cases cancel these journeys.

  • ADVANCED PURCHASE FARE: your clients have the option to Change the date of travel - our team can amend without change fees. It is important to note that there may be additional costs that apply if the new booking is in a higher season or fare type. The alternative will be to keep the booking as is and hope that the Trans-Tasman travel bubble opens and travel is possible. The booking is non-refundable and no refund will be available if travel does not take place. We can provide an insurance letter if required.

  • EARLYBIRD FARE: your clients have the option to Change the date of travel - our team can amend without change fees. It is important to note that there may be additional costs that apply if the new booking is in a higher season or fare type. The alternative will be to keep the booking as is and hope that the Trans-Tasman travel bubble opens and travel is possible. The booking is non-refundable and no refund will be available if travel does not take place. We can provide an insurance letter if required.

  • EVERYDAY FARE: you can keep the deposit on file and Change the date of travel - our team can amend without change fees. It is important to note that there may be additional costs that apply if the new booking is in a higher season or fare type, alternatively this fare does offer the flexibility to cancel talk to us to find out what the T&C's are to your booking.

Rocky Mountaineer

Please see the following link for the most recent Rocky Mountaineer Policy regarding cancelling/amending existing bookings. Please also see here for Rocky Mountaineer's Official Statement regarding COVID-19.

  • All departures for the remaining 2020 season have been suspended.
    • Guests on suspended departures will receive a credit valued at 110% CAD of the value of the funds that Rail Europe has paid to Rocky Mountaineer to be used to travel by the end of the 2022 season, must be redeemed by November 2021.
    • Please contact Rail Europe Great Train Journeys team to find out how much credit your booking is due as our payment terms to Rocky Mountaineer differ to what we advise our customers to allow time to process payment. 
    • Rail Europe will also be providing detailed credit vouchers in the coming days outlining the amount you are due. 
    • 110% credit excludes tax on bookings paid in full to Rocky Mountaineer.
    • If only the deposit has been paid the 110% will only be applied to the deposit Rocky Mountaineer has on file. 
    • Rocky Mountaineer are holding 2021 and 2022 rail prices at the 2020 level so guests will not experience a price increase for the rail portion of their itinerary. Please note this only applies to the rail portion and not hotels and other 3rd party components. Please click here for the Rocky Mountaineer price guarantee. 
    • For guests rebooking a similar package in 2021, within 14 days on either side of the original calendar date, Rocky Mountaineer will guarantee they will not pay more for the new package, including third-party hotels, tours and attractions, due to the later travel date.
      Please note for clients who were booked in October 2020:  The 2021 season looks a bit different than this year, with fewer departures in October to choose from. To provide clients with flexibility in making their travel plans, they are welcome to rebook for any date that suits during the 2021 travel season with the price guarantee stated above.
  • Guests booked on one of Rocky Mountaineer operating departures & would like to transfer to travel in 2021, must make the booking by December 31, 2020
    • All cancellations on operating departures for 2020 will continue to be processed in the form of a travel credit valid for 2020 or 2021.  
    • New bookings for 2020 can be made with a CAD25 deposit.  Final payment at 30 days becomes 100% non-refundable.
    • New bookings for 2021 can be made with a CAD25 deposit.  20% non-refundable deposit will be due November 6, 2020.  
    • The credit will be available to be used on your new booking, please note the fares may be subject to change depending on the time of year you travel availability and foreign exchange

2021 RAIL SCHEDULE CHANGES

Due to anticipated prolonged recovery post-pandemic, there has been some rail schedule changes to the 2021 season. 

For guests affected by these schedule changes the following options apply:

  • Your client can rebook to any available date in 2021 with a guarantee they will not pay more when rebooking a similar package.
  • If your clients prefer to travel in 2022, they will receive a future travel credit of 110% pre-tax value of monies paid, if they have not already received it when rebooking a 2020 suspended departure.
  • All impacted clients will also receive a $100 CAD merchandise credit per person, whether they are travelling in 2021 or 2022.

Please click here to read a letter regarding the Rocky Mountaineer credit policy from the President and CEO of Rocky Mountaineer Steve Sammut. 


VIA Rail 

Please see the following link for the most recent news of VIA Rail Cancellations and here for VIA Rail's official statement regarding COVID-19.

VIA has decided to suspend the long haul services of The Canadian, The Ocean and The Churchill (Winnipeg-Churchill line is not fully suspended – just the Sleeper Plus service) until November 1st, 2020. Your booking will be automatically cancelled and once Rail Europe receive the funds already paid to VIA Rail a refund will be provided. 

 


Golden Eagle Luxury Trains

Unfortunately, the 3, 16, 31 May, 13 June, and 1, 10 July 2020 Trans-Siberian/Mongolian departures have been cancelled due to the severe travel restrictions imposed by governments throughout the world.   As well as the Balkan Explorer, Balkan Odyssey and Castles of Transylvania.

Golden Eagle are offering passengers to amend their travel dates on the May, June and July departures of the Trans-Siberian/Mongolian onto a later departure date in either 2020, 2021 or 2022 with no change fee, however (subject to availability any price increases and changes in exchange rates).

All passengers affected have been or will be contacted and offered to either cancel their booking or amend to the corresponding departure in 2021.

The supplier will review all other departure dates for July onwards in chronological order at some point between 75 and 60 days before departure and advise us accordingly. These departures are currently subject to the standard terms and conditions.

Official statement from the supplier...


The Tsar's Gold - Trans-Siberian

Due to the continuing worldwide travel restrictions and in consideration of the current situation, Lernidee has decided to cancel all Zarengold (Moscow - St Petersburg and V.V) journeys departing up to 07 August 2020.  For all other departures customers will receive an update latest 8 weeks before departure.

2021 dates and rates and reservations are now available, please contact us for more information. 

 


Belmond

  • Belmond are currently reviewing every booking and will advise based on latest policy, we will do our best to assist all our guests/customers in this current situation.
  • All guests with reservations for arrival on or before June 30, 2020, will be allowed to change or cancel without charge from Belmond. This includes advance purchase rate and other pre-paid reservations. Any refund paid will be less any associated bank fees in receiving the funds back from the supplier. 
  • All guests with reservations for a journey departing on or after July 01, 2020 will be able to reschedule their journey up to 35 days prior to the scheduled date of departure without charge by Belmond.
  • Guests will be able to select a new departure date from the current published schedules for 2020 and 2021, and any initial deposit already paid will be valid for use against the revised booking. Please note that all bookings will be subject to availability and a price difference may apply.
  • Please note any reschedule must be for the same journey as per their original booking.

New Reservations

 

  • All new reservations booked between March 16, 2020 and June 30, 2020 for a departure date on or before November 30, 2020 can be changed up to 35 days prior to the scheduled date of departure without charge by Belmond.
  • Guests will be able to select a new departure date from the current published schedules for 2020 and 2021, and any initial deposit already paid will be valid for use against the revised booking. Please note that all bookings will be subject to availability and a price difference may apply

Official statement from the supplier...


Spanish Luxury Trains:

El-Transcantabrico, Al Andalus and El Expreso de la Robla have cancelled all depatures in 2020. 

All clients who have paid a deposit will be entitled to a 10% discount on the pending balance, you can change to 2021 with the same Price (2020). Clients are also eligible for a full refund if they choose to cancel their booking. 

Any refund paid will be less any associated bank fees in receiving the funds from the supplier. 

Rail Europe will actively reach out to customers whose train has been cancelled. 


Peru Luxury trains

Peru Rail is offering the chance to rebook for a later date at no cost.

If this is not possible a refund will be offered, this measure will be extended for bookings to the 30th April. Any refund paid will be less any associated bank fees in receiving the funds from the supplier. 


Swiss and Canadian Packages

Please contact us for the conditions on your Swiss or Canadian Package. As each booking involves multiple suppliers we will need to check the individual T&C's before providing any advice. 


Alaska Railroad

Effective 3rd April, the Alaska Railroad is extending the following temporary operational changes for regularly scheduled passenger operations:

Aurora Winter Train: suspended through end of 2019-2020 winter season

Coastal Classic Train: daily scheduled service begins July 1, 2020

Denali Star Train: daily scheduled service begins July 1, 2020

Glacier Discovery Train: daily scheduled service begins July 3, 2020

Hurricane Turn Train: operates April 2, May 7, and June 4, 2020 while maintaining social distancing requirements in applicable State and Municipal orders related to COVID-19; standard Thursday-Monday service begins July 2, 2020.

Refunds will be processed automatically back to Rail Europe and once received this will be paid to you. Please allow 6-8 weeks for this process to be finalised. Any refund paid will be less any associated bank fees in receiving the funds from the supplier. 

Official statement from the supplier...


The Blue Train

THE BLUE TRAIN SERVICES HAVE BEEN SUSPENDED, UNTIL 30th September 2020

The following options for guests with forward bookings remains as follows;

  • Ticket Transfer: The transfer of tickets to friends and family who can travel from 01 October 2020 to 31 December 2021 – SHOULD COVID-19 REGULATIONS ALLOW BY THEN
  • Postponement: The option to postpone travel to any date that falls within 01 October 2020 to 31 December 2021 - SHOULD COVID-19 REGULATIONS ALSO ALLOW BY THEN. Only ONE postponement will be allowed.
  • Cancellation: The last option is to cancel confirmed bookings that are fully paid and receive a full refund.

All the above options will not incur any penalties. Any refund paid will be less any associated bank fees in receiving the funds from the supplier. 

At this stage, for transfers, postponements and cancellations of travel after 31 December 2020, The Blue Train’s Standard Terms and Conditions will apply.


ROVOS Rail

Any cancellation made 60 days or more prior to departure will incur normal cancellation penalties.

Long Journeys must be cancelled between 31 – 60 days of departure.

Short Journeys must be cancelled between 7 – 30 days of departure.

 


Kiwi Rail 

Kiwi Rail has made the decision to cancel their three tourist train services – the TranzAlpine, Coastal Pacific and the Northern Explorer - from 23 March 2020 until further notice. 

Full refunds will be provided for those on cancelled services.

Official statement from the supplier...


Queensland Rail

Queensland Rail Travel are waiving all cancellation and rebooking fees under the following conditions:

  • Valid for all bookings with travel dates until 30 April 2020 (inclusive).
  • This includes all long-distance services, Kuranda Scenic Railway and Gulflander.
  • For rebooking, if the value of the rebooked journey is greater than that of your original booking, the customers will need to cover the fare difference.

Official statement from the supplier...

Rail Europe will honour all supplier cancellation policies in full. Please note a refund will not be paid to you until Rail Europe receive this refund from the supplier. Please note as the situation is changing very rapidly all details published on our website to change until confirmed by the supplier for your particular booking at the time of cancellation/transfer.

Please contact the Great Train Journeys team at gtj@raileurope.com.au/gtj@raileurope.co.nz

Kind Regards Rail Europe Team. 


 

 

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