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Frequently Asked Questions

What about my tickets and travel plans during a strike?

Customers who have an advance ticket with a Northern origin or destination station, where we offer the connection using another train operator’s service, and want to travel on a different date than is printed on their ticket, can travel on either the day before or the day after the date that is printed on the ticket

This will be honoured by the following operators: Chiltern, C2C, Cross Country, Gatwick Express, Great Northern, Greater Anglia, Great Western Railways, Hull Trains, London Northwestern, London North Eastern Railway, ScotRail, South Eastern, Southern, TransPennine Express,Thameslink, Transport for Wales, Virgin Trains and West Midlands Trains.

Most tickets, except Advance Purchase tickets, enable you to travel on other operator’s trains on your chosen route, whatever the day of your journey. However, please be aware that all trains operating on the same routes as Northern on a strike day are expected to be very busy.

Anytime Day Single / Return, Off-Peak Day Single / Return, Anytime Short Return, Duo and Season tickets routed Northern only are NOT valid on any other operator’s services on strike days.

Customers with Advance Purchase ticket (your ticket will say ‘AP Northern only’) have a number of options:

Customers can use their ticket for trains on either the day before or the day after the strike, but are advised to travel close to their original booked train times on these days.

We have also arranged ticket acceptance on a number of other train operators to help Northern customers with Advance Purchase tickets (your ticket will say AP Northern only).

The following operators will accept these tickets: Cross Country, East Midlands Trains, Transport for Wales, Grand Central, Hull Trains, London North Eastern Railway, TransPennine Express, and Virgin Trains. Customers are advised to travel as close as possible to the original booked train times on these days.


Non-season ticket holders who decide not to travel on an RMT strike day are entitled to a full refund, if their origin station or destination station is on the Northern network, with no admin fee charged. This should be applied for from the original point of sale.

Customers with Northern season tickets* who decide not to travel due to strike action, can also claim compensation on the days they do not travel.  These claims can be made using Northern’s Delay Repay process.

If you travel on a strike day and experience a delay of 15 minutes or more to your journey, you are eligible to compensation through Northern’s Delay Repay scheme.  To claim, please go to the Delay Repay page on Northern’s website or ask for a Delay Repay form at any staffed station.

*excludes some multi-modal season ticket holders. Please refer below.

TfGM Traincard and SY RailMaster season ticket holders are eligible for compensation.

All other customers holding multi-modal season tickets issued on behalf of a PTE i.e. Merseytravel Trio / RailPass, TfGM Countycard, Metro (WYPTE) Mcard / Metrocard and Travel South Yorkshire (SYPTE) SY Connect+ / Travelmaster Gold etc are NOT entitled to claim for compensation via Delay Repay.

Non-season ticket holders who decide not to travel should apply for a refund from the original point of sale.

Eligible season ticket holders* can claim a compensation payment to the proportional value of the daily price of their ticket if they decide not to travel. These claims can be made using Northern’s Delay Repay process. Forms are also available at our staffed stations.

When claiming for a day when you were unable to use your ticket due to industrial action, please ensure you input that the length of your delay as 02:00. Please note that you cannot claim for compensation in advance. Please note, customers with season tickets cannot claim compensation before the strike days.

To prevent your claim being rejected, please apply within 28 days from the date of travel.

Further details are available in our Customer Promise document.

*If you are multi-modal season ticket holder, please refer to the FAQ above.

Northern’s Delay Repay and compensation policy does not in any way limit or exclude your legal right as a consumer under the Consumer Rights Act 2015 or otherwise.

At the moment we do not have ticket acceptance in place on Metrolink services. If this changes we will update this page.

Refunds should be applied for within 28 days of the date of sale and directed to the original point of purchase.

If you purchased your ticket online, details of how to claim a refund will be available on that website. If you purchased at a station that you are not able to return to, then you can apply via the Customer Relations team of the train operator that manages the station. National Rail Enquiries lists details of stations and relevant train operators.

Another line of route would generally mean a separate ticket is required. If the station you start your journey from is normally en-route then no extra charge would be made.

No. Anyone who requires the Passenger Assist services should book as they would usually, by calling our Assisted Travel Team on 0800 138 5560 or by booking via the Travel Assistance Form available here.

Unfortunately this is not possible. If you do need to travel on a strike day, please look at our available train and replacement bus service options available on this webpage.