Staff Travel News


Publication of the Summer 2021 Staff Travel Restrictions

The Staff Travel Restrictions for Summer 2021 have been published on the Where Can I Go and Restrictions page.

Where Train Operating Companies require mandatory seat reservations, or where they are strongly recommended, the Staff Travel Restrictions contains information on how staff may make these reservations. The instructions are different for each operator. For all other Train Operating Companies, seat reservations may be made at National Rail station ticket offices.

The Staff Travel Restrictions may be updated between May and December 2021 as Train Operators adapt to local and national changes. You should check for the latest version before travelling.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 6th May 2021

Rail Staff Leisure Card renewal for 2021/22

(This news item only applies to non-safeguarded employees. It does not apply to safeguarded employees issued with a Staff Travel Card who have continuous service in the rail industry since at least 31 March 1996.)

Rail Staff Leisure Cards for 2021/22 will be posted to home addresses in June. Once a dispatch date has been confirmed by our supplier we will update this news item.

Changes of address. We no longer accept home address changes via e-mail. You can only change it using the online XX15 form.

If you have not informed us of a recent change of home address, please submit the Change of Address (XX15) form.
If you are moving between now and the end of June please let us know by email to so we can put a hold on your record until you have moved. Once you have moved please submit the XX15 form and cards will then be issued.

Child Declarations. These are required annually for dependant children aged 18 and over. If you have an outstanding Child Declaration, your child will not receive a card. Please submit a Child Declaration (XX05) form.

Mandatory photographs. If you have not submitted a photograph for yourself or eligible family members the card will not be issued. You can submit photographs using the Photo Upload page.

If you move home address and do not let RST know before we post the cards to you in June and you are unable to retrieve your card(s), we will charge a replacement fee per card to send them to your new address.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 20th April 2021

Use of Rail Staff Travel leisure facilities when national lockdowns or local tiered restrictions are in force – update 8 April 2021

On Monday 12 April, certain restrictions currently in place in England will be relaxed. Travel advice may be different between England, Scotland and Wales, so please check before travelling. You should also follow public health advice and if you or the people you live with have symptoms of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), you should stay at home and not travel.

Seat reservations are mandatory on some services and strongly recommended on others. The Staff Travel Restrictions published on the Where Can I Go and Restrictions page tells you how to make seat reservations.

The rail industry is doing all it can to ensure that you can travel with confidence. This includes additional cleaning and placing hand sanitiser at key locations. Please follow any specific guidance issued by theTrain Operating Company. Specifically, we ask that you:

Travel at quieter times so that operators can ensure there is capacity for essential workers and other commuters.
Wash your hands before and after your journey and carry hand sanitiser with you if you can.
Wear a face covering (unless you are exempt), both inside rail stations and on trains.
Buy your ticket before travel, and if possible use contactless payment.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 8th April 2021

Buying FIP discounted tickets and reservations for SNCF services – updated 11 March 2021

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

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.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 11th March 2021

Staff Travel Card renewal for 2021/22 – updated 5 March 2021

Staff Travel Cards for employees and eligible family members valid from 1 April 2021 to 30 June 2022 are due to be posted out starting on Tuesday 23 March.

If cards have not been received by 13 April please contact us by email at confirming

  • your full name, address and postcode
  • which member of your family has not received their passes

We do not currently have an inward telephone service. Any emails received after 31 July reporting non receipt of Staff Travel Cards will incur a replacement fee per card. A replacement fee will also be charged per card if you have moved address and not advised RST and cannot retrieve your card(s).

Cards will be sent separately for:

  • a dependant aged 18 or above where you only recently submitted the child declaration
  • a new family member where you have recently submitted the application

Cards will not be sent for dependants aged 18 or above where a Child Declaration form (XX05) has not been submitted. If you have not received a card for this reason, please complete the XX05 form along with the appropriate evidence to support your declaration.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 5th March 2021

Renewal of FIP International Reduced Rate Cards – updated 25 November 2020

FIP Cards for 2021/22 are being sent out by post on Wednesday 25 November. They are valid for two years from 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2022.

Change to the replacement process for all active and retired employees:

  • If you have moved home address and not let RST know and you are unable to retrieve your card(s) , we will charge a replacement fee per card to send them to your new address.
  • If you do not receive your cards at the address we hold for you, we will replace them free of charge if you tell us before 31 January 2021. After this date we will charge a replacement per card to send them to you.
From the Rail Delivery Group – 25th November 2020

Travel on DB-AG services with FIP facilities

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, DB-AG has not published a list of restricted trains for the Winter 2020-21 timetable period. A list may appear during the first part of 2021 so if you are planning to travel on DB-AG services, please check our Where Can I Go and Restrictions page.

DB-AG have introduced Loading Indicators (Auslastungsanzeige) on and in their DB Navigator App. DB AG request you choose alternative services to those ones marked with Exceptionally High Loading (Außergewöhnlich hohe Auslastung). Details of how to interpret the Loading Indicators on the website and in the DB Navigator App is included on page 66 of our Travel Tips for Europe guide.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 20th November 2020

Publication of the Summer 2020 restrictions – updated 17 November 2020

The Summer Restrictions 2020 have been published even though the timetable change has not yet taken place. The restrictions will come into effect if the timetable change is implemented later this year.

There is also an additional document – Supplementary Staff Travel Restrictions for Summer 2020 – produced in response to the Covid 19 outbreak. These additional restrictions are effective immediately and will be updated regularly as social distancing requirements change. Version 11 of this document was published on 17 November 2020.

You can find both documents on the Where Can I Go and Restrictions page.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 17th November 2020

Applying for FIP coupons from your 2020 allocation

You may apply for unused coupons from your 2020 allocation to use for travel up to 31 March 2021. All applications must be received by RST by no later than Wednesday 9 December. We are only able to accept applications made using the International Coupons Application forms XX09c and XX09b on the forms page of our website. E-mail and postal applications cannot be accepted.

We will take the coupons from your 2020 allocation if you put the outward date of travel as 31 December 2020 (even if your actual outward travel date is not until a date in 2021).

Where your application includes any carriers that are not available from your 2020 allocation (because you have already used them) we will take them automatically from your 2021 allocation.

Coupons from your 2020 allocation have a final travel date of 31 March 2021, even if there are spare date boxes left or the last date entered is 31 March 2021. They are not valid for any travel from 1 April 2021 onwards.

Applications for 6 or more coupons still require an outline itinerary attaching to the form.

Our FIP coupon production capacity is still limited by working from home arrangements and our temporary fulfilment service. If the volume of applications exceeds capacity, we may have to suspend the service.

From the Rail Delivery Group –13th November 2020

Heathrow Express

From Sunday 1 November 2020 free travel is available on Heathrow Express services with any of the following:

  • A Staff Travel Card with a dated box
  • A Gold Status Pass
  • A Silver Status Pass
  • A Western Region Blue Status Pass

The availability of Priv rate travel on presentation of a Staff Travel Card or Rail Staff Leisure Card as outlined in our Where Can I Go guides is unaffected by this announcement. For more information please check the Where Can I Go and Restrictions page.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 30th October 2020

Photographs on Rail Staff Leisure Cards

The Rail Delivery group has recently published an item referring to Rail Staff Leisure Cards.

This does not affect any retired staff, including those who would have held the cards during their employment.
They are withdrawn when T.O.C. staff retire.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 30th September 2020

Validity change for the 2020/21 Staff Travel Card

In the Spring of 2020 there was a period of time during which travel by train was for essential journeys only.

A decision has been made that the Staff Travel Card issued to Safeguarded Staff for the year 2020/21 which is printed with an end of validity date of 30 June 2021 will be extended to 30 September 2021.

This will give holders an additional 3 months in which to use the allocation of date boxes for free travel on National Rail services only.

In this 3 month extension period the Staff Travel Card dated boxes will not be valid for free travel on London Underground inter-available routes, nor for use on any of the other reciprocal carriers.

The 2020/21 Staff Travel Cards will not be re-issued with a new end of validity date. National Rail TOC ticket inspection staff will be briefed of this change to allow you to use dated boxes until 30 September.

Staff Travel Card 2020/21 summary of validity:

  • 1 April 2020 to 30 June 2021. Use on all services as shown in the Where Can I Go guide for Safeguarded Staff.
  • 1 July 2021 to 30 September 2021. Remaining dated boxes can be used for free travel on National Rail services only.

All usage is subject to any Staff Travel Restrictions published on the RST website.

The Staff Travel Card for 2021/22 will be issued as usual on schedule in early March 2021 and will be valid from 1 April 2021 to 30 June 2022.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 24th September 2020

Reinstatement of 7 day advance application threshold for residential facilities

During lockdown we reduced the advance time for applications for privilege rate season tickets from 7 to 2 days. i.e. the start date on the application for the season ticket had to give us at least 2 business days for us to generate the authorisation.

From 1 October 2020 we are re-instating business as usual processes and will require 7 days’ notice for privilege rate season tickets.

We will only accept applications for these facilities through the Employee Residential Travel XX01 and Dependent Season Ticket XX31 forms which are on our website forms page.

Reinstatement of child dependent earnings limit from 1 October 2020

Dependant children in full time education may undertake employment providing it does not exceed the weekly income limit (currently £146.80). During vacations they may undertake periods of temporary employment irrespective of earnings, providing that the period of temporary employment does not exceed 3 months.

In March 2020 this earnings limit was suspended for dependant children who fell into Eligibility Code 1. From 1 October 2020 the earnings limit is reinstated.

If you are completing a Child Declaration XX05 form and your child falls into Eligibility Code 1 then the earnings limit now applies. Pay slips must be provided to verify earnings. If your child exceeds this weekly income limit, then they lose eligibility for their Rail Staff Travel facilities, and you must return them immediately by signed for delivery to Rail Staff Travel.

Child dependants falling into eligibility codes 2 to 5 are unaffected by this change.

Priv rate fares available on Lappa Valley Railway

We are pleased to announce that Lappa Valley Railway has agreed to offer priv rate fares on presentation of a Staff Travel Card or Rail Staff Leisure Card.

As with all leisure railways priv rate fares may not be available on special event days.

You can find the railway at Lappa Valley, St Newlyn East, Newquay, TR8 5LX. More information on operating days and their timetable of services can be found on their website:

From the Rail Delivery Group – 22nd September 2020

Keeping in touch with retired employees

Rail Staff Travel are providing occasional updates on staff travel matters by e-mail. If you think we do not have your e-mail address and would like to register it with us, or have recently changed any of your contact details, please submit a Retired Data Check (XX12) form which you can find on this Forms page.

Please share this information with any colleagues or friends who may benefit.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 3rd September 2020

Travel on P & O Ferries – updated 13 August

We were previously advised that P&O were running an optimised schedule and with the social distancing protocols currently in place, some summer sailings have no or very limited availability left. However we have now been informed that aside from the Dover to Calais Sunday 23 August 03:25 service there is now more availability. This is subject to change, and you should check availability via their website on an individual sailing basis.

From the Rail Delivery Group – 18th August 2020

Transport for Wales rail services

The essential travel restriction on public transport has been lifted as of 17th August 2020.

Please check for the latest information

From the Rail Delivery Group –  17th August 2020

Travel on Stena BV Harwich to Hook of Holland ferries

Stena BV can only carry a small percentage of their usual volumes of passengers and vehicles. As a result, for the next few weeks the quotas of FIP concessionary and free travel are reduced significantly and availability is extremely limited.

The Stena call centre will be able to advise of the availability on specific services. The phone number is in the Rail Staff Travel Guides which you can find on the Where Can I Go and Restrictions page.

We will continue to issue Stena BV FIP coupons for those who request them, but Stena can make no guarantee that there will be availability when you intend to travel.

From the Rail Delivery Group –  13th August 2020

Transport for Wales rail services

This is a reminder that rail services operated by Transport for Wales are still for essential journeys only.

Please check for the latest information

From the Rail Delivery Group –  6th August 2020

FIP Coupon applications

We have a temporary solution to issue FIP coupons so you can now make applications.

The postal service is experiencing delays in some areas. Applications can only be accepted using the online form on this website and must be made a minimum of three weeks before your intended outward date of travel.

The solution has a limited production capacity. If the number of applications exceeds the capacity, we may have to suspend the service.

Please only apply for FIP coupons if you are certain that you will be travelling and bear in mind that there is a risk we will not be able to deliver coupons in time for your trip.

If we post coupons to you, we will no longer accept unused ones back (including images of them cut up), even if they do not arrive in time for your travel date.

Please check the Travel Tips for Europe guide on the Where Can I Go and Restrictions page for the latest travel information on carriers in Europe. For instance, reservations are now mandatory on some services in Poland.

From the Rail Delivery Group –  9th July 2020

Rail Staff Leisure Card (formerly TOC Priv) renewal for 2020/21

The Rail Staff Leisure Cards for Non-Safeguarded Staff and Dependents valid from 1 July 2020 until 30 June 2021 will be posted out by Royal Mail starting on Monday 8 June. Please allow at least two weeks for delivery.

The Rail Staff Leisure Card is the new name for the TOC Priv Card (see the news item below for more details)

If you have not received your Rail Staff Leisure Card by Monday 22 May, please contact Rail Staff Travel by e-mail at

If you have received your Rail Staff Leisure Card(s), but some are missing for dependent children, then the most likely reason is that you have not completed a child declaration. You can find the XX05 form for this on our forms page. Once a child declaration is received, we will send out Rail Staff Leisure Cards, but this is likely to take longer than usual.

If you do not notify us by 31 July 2020 of any missing cards, then the usual replacement fee will apply.

From the Rail Delivery Group –  4th June 2020


Restrictions for Summer 2020 and delay to the summer timetable

The Rail Staff Travel Restrictions for Summer 2020 were prepared for the timetable which should have been implemented on 17 May 2020. These Rail Staff Travel Restrictions have been published on the RST website, even though the timetable change is delayed. The restrictions will come into effect when the timetable is launched.

When restrictions on leisure travel are eased later in the year please check this before travelling.

Supplementary restrictions on travel for Summer 2020 and mandatory reservation services

For the Train Operating Companies to manage social distancing there are some supplementary Rail Staff travel restrictions.
This also includes details of how to book reservations where operators require mandatory reservations to travel. Please note:

  • If you have 1st class staff travel facilities, the TOC may not be able to provide a seat in 1st class accommodation.
  • If you miss your booked train, the TOC can refuse you access to subsequent services if there is no space available.

These supplementary restrictions will be updated frequently over the next few weeks and months as changes occur.

These supplementary restrictions are published on the RST website. You should check for the latest version from the RST website before planning any journey.

The supplementary restrictions information relates to the use of Rail Staff Travel facilities. Where there are other national or local public requirements for travelling by rail, for instance a requirement to wear face coverings, then you need to check this with each TOC concerned.

Staff Travel Cards

2019/20 Staff Travel Cards are not being extended beyond the end of validity date of 30 June 2020. Any unused date boxes are not valid for travel after this date.

2020/21 Staff Travel Cards with a fresh allocation of date boxes have already been issued which are valid until 30 June 2021.

Priv discount on Oyster Cards

TfL have agreed that after 30 June if you have your 2019/20 Staff Travel Card and your 2020/21 Staff Travel Card and the same registered Oyster Card as last year, they can reset the Priv discount on your Oyster Card.

Social distancing is in place at stations so this process will take a little longer than usual.

TfL staff at the London Underground stations have been sent instructions on how to do this using the London Underground ticket machines. If they have difficulties setting the discount, or are unsure what to do, please ask them to check TfL Hot Issues Bulletin 20-20.

If you do not have your 2019/20 Staff Travel Card and 2020/21 Staff Travel Card, and the Oyster Card you used in the previous year you will need to submit a TfL Privilege Oyster Application (XX19) form card

FIP coupons – This only applies if you are eligible for these

We have not been issuing FIP Coupons as there have been travel restrictions in place across Europe. The Foreign Office are still advising against overseas travel at this time. However, as restrictions are lifted we hope to relaunch this service. We will update our website when we are able to accept new applications. Once this is available you will need to apply a minimum of three weeks before your intended date of travel.

Please bear in mind that we cannot accept the return of unused FIP coupons from any new applications requested from now so bear this in mind if you plan to apply.

Moving house?

Please remember that if you change your home address, you must let Rail Staff Travel know as well as RPMI. This ensures that you continue to get your Staff Travel Card each year delivered to the correct address.

Due to Data Protection regulations, we are not able to share your address data with RPMI.

Help all retired employees receive news from Rail Staff Travel

E-mail is the quickest way for us to keep everyone informed of Rail Staff Travel issues.

If you have friends also in receipt of Rail Staff Travel facilities who have not received this e-mail, please encourage them to provide their e-mail to Rail Staff Travel.

Any retired employee can submit the XX12 form which is available HERE.

From the Rail Delivery Group by email –  26th May 2020