Tomorrow is day one of six: If the German train driver company GDL really goes through with its plan, then the longest strike in the history of Deutsche Bahn will begin. According to the plan, passenger trains will be idle for five days and 16 hours. Those who travel with the Austrian Federal Railways (ÖBB) also feel this. The ÖBB warned that “cross-border outages” are looming until next Monday at 6 p.m. It is recommended not to travel by train to Germany until then.
- Why is there a strike? What is required? How can things continue? >> You can read the background to the strike here.
Regional trains cross the border
The good news: Local and regional transport is not affected. This also includes connections that go a bit beyond the border. Innviertel residents who commute by train to the Bavarian border area like Simbach can breathe a sigh of relief. Railjets that travel via the Deutsches Eck between Salzburg and Kufstein also remain on rails. Only Deutsche Bahn trains that otherwise serve this route are canceled.
Basically, the strike affects long-distance trains that travel to or from Germany – with one exception: Westbahn customers do not have to fear any restrictions. The company said the trains will run as scheduled to Rosenheim, Tyrol and Vorarlberg as well as Munich. As reported, passengers with a DB or ÖBB long-distance ticket can travel for free between Salzburg and Munich.
ÖBB trains to Passau or Nuremberg
An example: Anyone who has booked an ÖBB ticket to the Bavarian capital in the coming days will have to get off the train in Salzburg, but has the option of changing to the Westbahn. The ÖBB ticket remains valid for this onward journey. The private Westbahn can travel to Germany because it does not rely on German train drivers. “There is no change of train drivers, as the ÖBB does with the DB,” says Seif.
There is no transfer option for all other routes. Some ICE trains can go to Passau, others even to Nuremberg. “As long as there are our own staff on the train, we travel,” says the ÖBB. The announced strikes will have a serious impact on night trains.
Tickets valid longer
Some connections could only resume normal operations on Tuesday, January 30th. Affected Nightjet tickets will be valid for longer – until February 5th. The prerequisite is that the ticket was purchased by January 22nd. This also applies to international Sparschiene and standard tickets. “Train service is suspended. “The ticket will not expire due to the strike,” says the ÖBB spokesman.
Hotel costs are covered
In addition, the ticket for an affected night train can also be used during the day. If this is not an option, the night train journey can be canceled free of charge and the costs will be refunded. In this case or in the event of a rebooking, those affected should either contact the ÖBB employees at the ticket counters or telephone customer service (05-1717-0).
Current information on Scotty
Those ÖBB customers who have already started their journey and are now stranded in the neighboring country will be compensated. The ÖBB covers the costs for the hotel and the taxi ride there. This falls under passenger rights. However, the accommodation may cost a maximum of 80 euros per person.
The strike starts tonight. The ÖBB advise current connections via the Timetable information Scotty to consider. “The shorter term you look, the better.”
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