News

Updated 2 December 2019

Contents

Change of FIP identity for the Railways of North Macedonia

From 1 January 2020 the FIP identity of MŽ-T Makedonski Železnici Transport (Macedonian Passenger Railways) is being renamed ŽRSM Železnici na Republika Severna Makedonija (Railways of the Republic of North Macedonia).

RST will issue coupons showing ŽRSM where the outward travel date is 1 January 2020 or later.

FIP International Reduced Rate Cards issued by RST which show a discount is available on MŽ-T services will continue to be valid for a discount in North Macedonia until these cards are renewed in December 2020.

2 December 2019

Residential pass renewal

The residential pass renewal is being done in two phases. Residential passes in the first phase were posted out on Tuesday 12 November 2019. Residential passes in the second phase will be posted out on Wednesday 4 December.

If your residential pass no longer meets your commuting requirement due to a change of home address or work location, you must contact Rail Staff Travel.

If your residential pass does not arrive in the post, please contact Rail Staff Travel. Notifications of non-delivery after 31 January 2020 will be subject to the replacement fee.

2 December 2019

GWR acceptance of SWR staff passes during industrial action

GWR have confirmed that they will accept active and retired SWR staff passes during industrial action on certain routes as below, except on the following dates: 15th, 16th, 24th, 25th, 26th and 27th December.

  • Bristol Temple Meads - Salisbury via Warminster (except on trains shown in the Staff Travel Restrictions booklet)
  • Salisbury - Portsmouth Harbour/Havant (except on trains shown in the Staff Travel Restrictions booklet)
  • Yeovil Pen Mill - Salisbury via Castle Cary and Warminster
  • Exeter - Paddington via Newbury (but not via Bristol Temple Meads)

SWR active and retired staff passes are not valid on any other GWR services.

SWR active and retired staff passes are not valid on any GWR services on 15th, 16th, 24th, 25th, 26th and 27th December.

All holders are staff passes are reminded of these rules from the Staff Travel Restrictions, particularly where services may be more crowded than usual during industrial action.

When travelling using your staff travel facilities, priority should be given to fare-paying passengers. Whenever possible, cardholders should travel on lightly-loaded trains. If a train is crowded, cardholders should allow fare-paying passengers to take seats. Specifically, Active Staff and dependants must vacate seats on request in First Class accommodation where fare paying passengers are standing. Although Retired Staff and dependants may be asked to vacate their seat in First Class accommodation they do not have to.

29 November 2019

Staff Travel Restrictions for Winter 2019-20

The Staff Travel Restrictions for Winter 2019-20 valid from 15 December 2019 to 16 May 2020 have been published on the Where Can I Go and Restrictions page.

29 November 2019

Change of FIP identity

From 1 January 2020, we are changing our FIP identity from ATOC/GBPR to GB National Rail.

FIP International Reduced Rate Cards were last issued by RST in December 2018 to cover 2019 and 2020. These are branded with ATOC/GBPR and will not be updated until the main renewal of all cards scheduled for December 2020. They remain valid for discounted travel on all FIP member services during 2020.

FIP Coupons issued by RST for travel on or after 1 January 2020 will be changed to show GB National Rail.

All FIP members have been briefed about this change, so there should be no issues with ticket inspection in Europe by staff working for FIP members.

FIP International Reduced Rate Cards and Coupons issued by the 42 FIP members will be updated starting from 1 January 2020. However, this update is likely to take around 2 years for all members to complete, so visitors to Britain using FIP facilities may still present some which show ATOC/GBPR, and these remain valid on TOC services in Britain.

28 November 2019

Industrial action affecting SNCF in December 2019

There is industrial action planned by SNCF employees to start in December 2019. There is an SNCF webpage in English relating to this disruption here en.oui.sncf/train/greve

This action will also affect Eurostar services. There is a Eurostar webpage relating to this disruption here www.eurostar.com/uk-en/disruption/service-update

Rail Staff Travel has no additional information on which services will be affected and is unable to assist with specific journey enquiries.

26 November 2019

Applying for FIP coupons from your 2019 allocation

You are able to apply for unused coupons from your 2019 allocation to use up to 31 March 2020. All applications must be received by RST by no later than 17th December.

When you fill in the International Coupons Application forms XX09c or XX09b, RST will only take the coupons from your 2019 allocation if you put the outward date of travel as 31 December 2019 (even if your actual travel date is not until a date in 2020).

Where an application has coupons for more than one FIP member, if any are not available from your 2019 allocation RST will take them automatically from your 2020 allocation.

Coupons from your 2019 allocation have a final travel date of 31 March 2020, even if there are spare boxes left or the last date entered is 31 March 2020. They are not valid for any travel from 1 April 2020 onwards.

25 November 2019

Status Pass maps for the London area

New maps have been added to the Where Can I Go and Restrictions page. These show the availability of status passes in the London area including the inter-available routes on London Underground services. The notes with each map show how stations which can be passed through but not used for entry and exit are highlighted.

A map is in preparation which will show Staff Travel Card availability within the London area, and will be published as soon as it has been finalised.

The maps are available on-line only. Rail Staff Travel is not making have hardcopies available. The maps are strictly for personal use only by staff travel facilities holders and may not be published in any form, including images of them uploaded to internet and social media sites.

7 November 2019

Gold and Silver Status Passes – West Midlands Trains update

Both the Gold Status Pass and Silver Status Pass have been issued as SmartCards are expected to operate the gates at Smart-enabled stations.

As the roll-out of Smart-enabled gates across the national network continues  additional stations will be enabled that will allow holders to operate the gates using their Status Pass. The current situation is that the majority of London in-boundary TOC stations should be Smart-enabled allowing the Status Passes to operate. In addition, gates at outboundary stations on Greater Anglia, c2c, Southeastern, South Western Railway, Northern, Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR),  East Midlands Trains, Chiltern, Great Western Railway (GWR), Transport for Wales (TfW) and West Midlands Trains (WMT) stations will operate with further TOCs being enabled over the next few months.

A definitive list of stations that are Smart-enabled is not currently available as this list changes frequently.

Please remember that you can still use your Status Pass as a "Show and Go" Pass at all valid locations that are not currently Smart-enabled.

5 November 2019

Buying FIP discounted tickets and reservations for SNCF services

From 1 January 2020, FIP ticket sales and reservations for all SNCF TGV and Intercités services within France and some international TGV services operated solely by SNCF will no longer be available to travel agents. This change affects all rail staff in Europe, not just those in Britain.

SNCF offer FIP fares and reservations at SNCF ticket office counters in France or from their French contact centre which is open 7 days a week from 7am to 10pm (French local time). 

The telephone number for the SNCF contact centre is 00 33 1 84 94 3635 (international call rates apply). The SNCF website shows the typical busy times when call wait times are extended www.sncf.com/en/service-client/nous-contacter/telephone

The contact centre phone introduction is in French and lists various options. If you remain silent, at the end of the introduction it will say “For this service in English press #85”. Entering #85 on your phone will connect you to an English-speaking operator.

To save a lengthy and expensive phone call, please check the latest version of our Travel Tips for Europe guide before you call them. It is best to have planned your journeys and know the specific train services you want to book before you call. Remember that FIP facilities are not available on Ouigo or Intercités 100% Eco services. These low cost operators sell tickets through their own website only, and fares may be cheaper than the FIP discounted fares on equivalent SNCF services. The SNCF contact centre is unable to quote or sell you fares on Ouigo or Intercités 100% Eco services.

To make a booking, you will need to quote the FIP International Reduced Rate Card numbers for every person in your group to the SNCF agent. We have no information on the SNCF contact centre transaction fees or ticket delivery options.

18 October 2019

Buying FIP discounted tickets in France for Eurostar services

From 9 November 2019 it will no longer be possible to book FIP discounted Eurostar tickets at SNCF ticket offices in France. Eurostar have put in place alternative arrangements which are described in the Eurostar Leisure Fares documents on our Current Offers and Concessions page.

14 October 2019

Changes to the availability of upgrades on Eurostar services

Eurostar has confirmed its policy on upgrades on staff discounted fares. Only holders of 1st Class FIP cards/Rail Staff Travel cards are permitted to buy discounted tickets for travel in Standard Premier accommodation. Upgrades for holders of discounted Standard class tickets to Standard Premier accommodation in advance or on the day of travel will not be permitted.

This arrangement is effective for tickets purchased from today, or upgrades sought from today. For tickets already purchased for future travel, these will be honoured with no requirement to pay any additional sum.

3 September 2019

Booking Caledonian Sleeper tickets and berths at Virgin Trains stations

We have had confirmation from Virgin Trains that the technical issue with their ticket office machines has been resolved, and that all Virgin Trains ticket offices are now able to book staff travel facilities on Caledonian Sleeper services.

30 August 2019

FIP coupons and the International Reduced Rate Card after Brexit

Rail Staff Travel is a member of FIP, an association within the UIC (International Union of Railways). This membership of FIP enables RST to issue FIP facilities (FIP coupons and the International Reduced Rate Card) on a reciprocal basis with the other FIP association members.

The RST membership of FIP is entirely unconnected to the United Kingdom's membership of the European Union. The FIP facilities currently enjoyed by active and retired staff, partners and dependants will continue after Brexit when the United Kingdom is no longer a member state of the European Union.

18 September 2018

RST Contact Details

From the UK, call us on: 0207 841 8274
Phone lines are open from 9am to 4.30pm each weekday (excl Bank Holidays)
Email us at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Write to us at: Rail Staff Travel, PO Box 72071, London EC1P 1JD
From outside the UK, call us on: +44 20 7841 8274
Unfortunately, we cannot offer a "face-to-face" service for personal callers.
However, in the case of genuine emergency (e.g. travelling to a close family member's funeral), we will do our best to help. Owing to building security requirements, you will need to phone in advance rather than just arriving at our offices without notice.
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