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Trains beat planes when changing plans or cancelling

February 21, 2014 Aviation, Headline News 2 Comments Email Email

egtmedia59When changing or cancelling travel arrangements is necessary, it often incurs a fee. The fees can vary wildly, as two university students found out last week on a field trip to outback New South Wales.

Both students had travelled together by train from Sydney to Broken Hill but had chosen different options for their return. One had booked a train journey with NSW Trainlink, paying a fare of about AUD 95.

The other had planned to fly back and had booked a flight for the Sunday on Regional Express through LastMinute.com.au, for about FIS-250x250AUD 350.

The two were working in a field team in remote NSW when the weather changed and so did their plans. A band of rain swept down across Australia and forecasts suggested the resultant wet could cut the road between Fowlers Gap and Broken Hill, causing lengthy delays to their departure. The team decided to head back early to beat the rain. Plans for travelling back to Sydney needed changing.

One student decided to drive back with the rest of the team to Sydney and cancel the train.

The other decided to change her plane ticket from Sunday to Saturday.

Here’s where the big difference comes in.

The student who had booked on the train was refunded her AUD 95 fare, minus a AUD 5.50 cancellation fee.

The student who had booked a flight was charged AUD 189 to change the flight from Sunday to Saturday.

It certainly pays to read the small print.

Written by : Peter Needham

Currently there are "2 comments" on this Article:

  1. gnits says:

    ….when making any booking, whether it’s a tour, a hotel, a plane, a restaurant or whatever, the first thing you should always and never ever forget to ask is the cancellation policy… some establishments will not give refund no matter how legit your reason for cancelling is…remember that….always…ever…

  2. AgentGerko says:

    I love the trains. Such a shame that NSW gives no funding or priority to passenger rail, unlike Qld and to a lesser extent Vic. NSW closed almost all the country lines and put in bus services and then wondered why number plumetted. The venerable XPT needs replacing as it’s now 32 years old but cannot see that happening until there’s an outcry after some wheels fall off mid journey. And then there’s the actual rail lines, some built a hundred years ago when you had to wind around hills rather than bore through them so there’s a 70km speed limit on half our network. But there’s still nothing like hopping on the Melbourne XPT, having a nice hot meal in your compartment with a little wine, and then curling up to the clickety clack only to be waken by the conductor with time for a little brekky and a cuppa before arriving in the heart of downtown.

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