Dean Dunham explains what you're entitled to if your Christmas travel plans are disrupted amid festive chaos

22 December 2023, 08:14 | Updated: 22 December 2023, 08:22

Consumer Rights lawyer Dean Dunham speaks to Nick Ferrari

By Georgina Greer

Consumer Rights lawyer Dean Dunham spoke to Nick Ferrari as travel chaos continues in the UK.

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Last-minute strikes and the arrival of Storm Pia have caused pandemonium for those travelling for Christmas.

As Eurostar cancelled all trains amid a ‘last minute strike' on Thursday, London Euston stopped all trains leaving the station.

Flights were also grounded, and 'do not travel' alerts were issued as Storm Pia battered the UK.

Mr Dunham reminded listeners that they do have "lots of rights" as he condemned train companies for "acting like you don't".

He criticised Eurostar saying the company are "acting terribly", adding: "Eurostar has been pulled up many times before for failing to tell consumers their rights".

Mr Dunham noted a listener who had tweeted him about her disabled mum, who is stuck in Paris where EuroStar is refusing to provide accommodation and charging £400 for new tickets.

READ MORE: Christmas travel chaos to continue into second day as 21 million expected to travel over weekend in festive frenzy

He advised listeners affected by delays and cancellations to ask to be "re-routed" as companies will then have to provide them with accommodation and subsidised meals in the lead-up to rescheduled transport.

However, there is bad news for those affected by disruption as a result of Storm Pia as these fall into the category of 'extraordinary circumstances' for train and airlines and therefore consumers cannot be compensated.

Eurostar has confirmed that travel will continue as normal on Friday with an additional six trains operating between Paris and London over the weekend to make up for the backlog from the strikes.

READ MORE: Brit holidaymaker blasts insurer AXA’s ‘shambolic’ response after suffering multiple injuries in horror St Lucia crash

Drivers have been warned this weekend will be the busiest time to travel during the festive period, as analysts have predicted roads will be 20% busier than last year.

Congestion on roads is likely to peak on Friday with 3.2 million taking to the roads, the RAC said, with drivers warned they could face delays of up to 40 minutes on the M25 clockwise west of London, according to transport analysis company Inrix.

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