What are my rights in regard to annual tickets? What can I do?
As the holder of an annual ticket, you are entitled to compensation in the event of increased train delays or cancellations (urban transport excepted). Regional transport must achieve a minimum punctuality level of at least 95%. Rail companies, such as WESTbahn, who only operate long-distance services always determine their own level of punctuality. The railway companies publish their monthly punctuality levels on their websites. This allows passengers to check punctuality: passengers will be entitled to compensation for delays if punctuality levels are not achieved in at least one month. At the moment, all railway companies are providing compensation amounting to 10% of the railway ticket price (prorata price for bus companies may be deducted). ÖBB passengers will only be entitled to compensation if they register in advance (as soon as they receive the annual ticket) on the Internet or at a ticket counter (name, ticket validity, rail connections, etc.). Payment will be made automatically in the event of passengers being entitled to any compensation (either by transfer to your bank account or cash payment depending on the information provided). No registration is currently required by most other railway companies (CAT, WESTbahn, etc.) for compensation payments. WESTbahn, for example, always fulfils its compensation obligations by issuing vouchers. Cash payments are possible if desired.
The legal basis is Art. 17 of Regulation (EC) No. 1371/2007 and Paragraph 4 and Paragraph 5 of the Eisenbahnbeförderungsgesetz (EisbBFG – Railway Transport Act).