Everything you need to know about the train strikes this month and next (2023)

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Half-term family transport is set to be affected by another series of national rail strikes at most schools in England.

Both major railroad unions announced strikes during the break, which lasts from May 27 to June 4.

On Wednesday 31 May and Saturday 3 June, Aslef train drivers will stop working for several operators, including all major mainline and suburban rail companies.

RMT declared a strikeby members working for 14 railway companies on Friday 2 June.

The schedule means service could be suspended from late Tuesday May 30th until the morning of Sunday June 4th.

The departure of drivers on June 3 coincides with the so-calledFA-Cup-Finalbetween Manchester United and Manchester City takes place at Wembley Stadium in North West London.

Normally, tens of thousands of spectators would travel to the game by train. Racers traveling to the Epsom Derby will also be affected.


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Since June 2022, nationwide rail strikes over disputes over wages, job security and work organization have caused problems for tens of millions of rail passengers. Disruptions were frequent, causing massive disruption and making travel planning difficult in advance.

(Video) What you need to know about this week's huge train strike | ITV News

The main railwayRMT, has been organizing strikes for 24 days in the current wave of strikes, and Aslef has walked out eight times before.

Here you will find the most important questions and answers.

Who strikes when?

Aslef ordered all train drivers from 16 rail operators to go on strike on Wednesday 31 May and Saturday 3 June.

Railway companies are companies commissioned by the Ministry of Transport. These include leading intercity operators:

  • Avanti West Coast
  • cross country racing
  • East Midlands College
  • Great Western Railway
  • LNER
  • TransPennine Express

The vast majority of London commuter operators will also be affected:

  • Great England
  • GTR (Gatwick Express, Great Northern, Southern, Thameslink)
  • South East
  • Südwestbahn

This applies to operators with a focus on the Midlands and Northern England:

  • Coley Chiltern
  • north trains
  • West Midlands trains

From Thursday, June 1, the ban on "non-contractual overtime" will also apply.

The RMT union called its members to strike on Friday 2 June. The same train operators will be involved - in addition to c2c, which operates from the City of London to South Essex.

What will the effect be?

In many previous RMT strikes, Network Rail signal workers have moved out, shutting down at least half the rail system. Now they've settled in, so the network infrastructure should be open normally.

Still, thousands of trains will be canceled each day of the strike, disrupting the travel plans of millions of passengers.

The impact of driver strikes and RMT will be different.

In previous train driver strikes, some operators - such as Avanti West Coast and Southeastern - have canceled all trains.

(Video) Everything you need to know about the rail strikes

Others introduced backbone service on mainlines. For example, on the GWR travelers can expect basic services from London Paddington to and from Bristol Temple Meads and Cardiff Central.

The RMT strike is expected to have less of an impact. GWR is likely to offer a more extensive flight schedule, including to and from Exeter and Plymouth.

Avanti West Coast will offer basic one-hourly services from Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester and Glasgow to London Euston.

The LNER is expected to operate up to 40 per cent of normal services on the East Coast Main Line, concentrating on the backbone of the London King's Cross-York-Newcastle-Edinburgh route.

On all strike days the vast majority of services in Scotland and Wales will operate normally as ScotRail and Transport for Wales are not involved in disputes with Aslef and RMT.

On routes shared with English operators such as Aberdeen-Dundee-Edinburgh and Swansea-Cardiff-Newport, some trains may be busier than usual.

Passengers can also count on normal service:

  • Caledonian sleeper
  • Grand Central
  • Heathrow Express
  • torso trains
  • London above ground
  • Lumo
  • Merseyrail

Long-distance operators such as Avanti West Coast and TransPennine Express are likely to be particularly affected by the ban on train drivers working overtime.

In addition, some evening trains before strikes and morning trains after strikes will be cancelled.

Will this affect Eurostar?

No, but connections to and from the rail operator's main hub, London's St Pancras International station, will be difficult as union members who work for all three national rail operators (East Midlands Railway, Southeastern and Thameslink) who serve the station are struggling leave the station.

Why is Aslef conducting a protest action?

Aslef General Secretary Mick Whelan said: "We do not want to go on strike." We don't want to cause any inconvenience to passengers, we have family and friends who also use the train and we believe investing in the train is for the future of this country are important.

(Video) When and where are the next train strikes?

"But the blame for this action lies honestly and fairly with the employers, who with their tenacity forced this dismissal on us.

"The proposal - which is only 4 per cent - is clearly not designed to be adopted given that inflation is still above 10 per cent and our members at these companies have not had a raise in four years."

Mr Whelan said the companies involved were "abandoning passengers and taxpayers" and that "proposals to modernize Britain's railways and make them run more efficiently" had been rejected.

A spokesman for the Rail Delivery Group, which represents rail operators, said: "This is disappointing news for our customers and employees. More strikes are completely unnecessary and will only add to the pressure on an industry already in dire straits.”

"The pointless targeting of both the Eurovision Final and the FA Cup Final is disappointing for anyone planning to attend.

"After weeks of negotiations with Aslef management, we have made a revised and fair offer, including an 8 percent salary increase over two years. This would result in overdue sensible improvements already being made in parts of the network where more trains would run on time for passengers. Unfortunately it was rejected.

Why is RMT striking?

The Rail Delivery Group (RDG), which represents the railway operators, has made tariff proposals that RMT says it cannot accept.

Unions General Secretary Mick Lynch said: "The Government is again not allowing the Rail Delivery Group to make an improved offer which we may consider."

“Therefore we must continue our industrial campaign to reach the negotiated agreement on jobs, wages and working conditions.

“The ministers cannot simply wish for an end to this dispute. They underestimate the strength of the feelings of our members who have just given us a new six month strike mandate, remain supportive of the campaign and action and are determined to see it through until we find an acceptable solution.

"The government must now unblock the RDGs and allow them to make an offer that can be put to a referendum by our members."

A spokesman for Rail Delivery Group said: "In recent discussions with RMT, we continued to advocate a fair, industry-leading dispute resolution proposal agreed with the negotiating team that would settle this dispute, as well as an increase in staffing given our lowest salary 13%.”

(Video) Rail strikes threaten to bring UK to Christmas standstill

“By calling for more strikes, RMT management has decided to prolong the dispute without giving its members the opportunity to comment on their own offer.

"Instead, they will suffer even greater wage cuts from the protests, customers will be more disrupted and the industry will continue to suffer massive damage, at a time when the railways are taking more than their fair share of taxpayers to keep trains running on schedule." Keeping it going," the post says -Covid.

"We remain open and ready to engage in talks at national level so we can secure wage increases for our staff and the long-term future of an industry that is vital to the UK economy."

What does the government say?

Ministers will sign the final agreement, which will largely be paid for by taxpayers.

Ahead of the latest strike, Transport Secretary Mark Harper said: "Passengers have endured the RMT strike for almost a year, but RMT management intends to continue to force its members into even more pay cuts."

"And this despite the fact that there is the best and final offer, similar to the compensation offer that Network Rail members recently voted overwhelmingly in favor of."

Can strikes be broken off?

The dislike between the parties is so great that it seems unlikely.

I booked a ticket for one of the strike days. What can I do?

Passengers with Advance, Anytime or Off-Peak tickets can have their ticket refunded free of charge if the train for which the ticket was booked is cancelled, delayed or postponed.

Rail operators are likely to offer flexibility to travel on different non-strike days.

Season ticket passengers who do not travel can claim compensation for strike dates under the Delay Repay Scheme.

What alternatives are there?


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The long-distance bus providers National Express, Megabus and Flixbus will continue to operate as usual, but seats will be scarce and prices will rise.

(Video) TRAIN STRIKE: Everything you need to know on a day of UK travel chaos | Simon Calder join Breakfast

On the day of the FA Cup Final, National Express are offering return tickets from Manchester direct to Wembley Stadium for £54 return.


What dates are the next rail strikes? ›

When are the next train strikes? Three upcoming rail strikes have been announced. Certain train operators will be impacted on Wednesday 31st May, Friday 2nd June and Saturday 3rd June 2023. This is also likely to impact some services on the mornings after the strikes.

What days are the train strikes 2023? ›

For strike action from Friday 12 May to Saturday 3 June 2023

Customers with Advance, Anytime or Off-Peak tickets for travel on a strike day can instead use their ticket on an alternative date: Tickets for Friday 12 May or Saturday 13 May can be used on Thursday 11 May or up to and including Tuesday 16 May.

What are these train strikes about? ›

Why have railway workers been on strike? Unions say any pay offer should reflect the rising cost of living - with the inflation rate currently above 10%. But the rail industry is under pressure to save money, after the pandemic left a hole in its finances.

Will there be any train strikes in September 22? ›

Update: 9 September 2022

The planned strike action due to take place in September has now been called off in light of the Queen's death. BBC News website.

Are rail strikes likely to go ahead? ›

When will the rail strikes end? Unless a deal on pay, job security and working conditions is reached between unions and rail operators, it's likely that strikes could continue for the rest of 2023.

How much notice do train strikes have to give? ›

How much notice will you give for a strike? Unions are obliged to give us at least 14 days' notice of any strike action.

Will there be rail strikes in February 2023? ›

When are the rail and train strikes in February 2023? National rail have confirmed strikes for Wednesday 1st February and Friday 3rd which will most likely cause disruption for three to four days.

Will there be an Amtrak strike? ›

Amtrak Won't Go On Strike But Is Negatively Impacted

These parties are currently in a 60-day cooling-off period that expires at 12:01 am EST on September 16, 2022.

What days are the train strikes planned in December? ›

15 December 2022

Rail staff have announced a new round of strikes in December 2023 and January 2023 in a long-running dispute over pay and conditions. Widespread disruption to travel is expected across the country on these dates. The dates are: Tuesday 13–Wednesday 14 December 2022.

What are rail workers asking for? ›

What are the railroad unions asking for? The railroad unions are asking freight and railway companies for a pay increase, as well as better working conditions, including paid time off and a more flexible schedule.

What are train drivers striking over? ›

The disputes are over pay, working conditions, and job security for railway workers. The unions are asking for workers' pay to reflect a higher cost of living caused by rising inflation.

What will happen if the railroad goes on strike? ›

A strike would shut down nearly a third of the country's freight, industry players have warned. A freight railroad shutdown could “devastate” Amtrak operations, according to the Association of American Railroads.

Are train strikes expected in September? ›

When is the next rail strike? The Aslef strike will be all day on Thursday 15 September. This will clash with the RMT strike, which has been organised for Thursday 15 September and Saturday 17 September.

Will there be rail strikes in October? ›

28 September 2022

National rail strikes are due to take place Saturday 1, Wednesday 5 and Saturday 8 October. This action is co-ordinated across Network Rail and other train operating companies – it will also impact the Overground and Elizabeth Line.

Will there be train strikes in August? ›

What days are the train strikes in August happening? On August 18 and August 20, strikes are organised by the RMT and the scale of disruption will be similar to the industrial action we saw in June.

How do you travel during a train strike? ›

Jump on a coach. Coach services like Megabus and National Express are still operating across the country throughout the strikes. Unlike the trains, if you secure yourself a coach ticket, then you're 100% guaranteed that you'll have a seat for the journey - a must-have if you're on a 5 hour long coach trip!

How much would a railroad strike cost a day? ›

"Without freight rail, many U.S. industries would shut down." A strike would cause $2 billion a day in lost economic output, according to the Association of American Railroads, which lobbies on behalf of rail companies.

Do I get my money back if there is a train strike? ›

Yes, most rail operators will offer compensation if you are affected by the rail strikes, however, it will depend on the type of ticket you have and whether the rail operator runs a compensation scheme, most commonly referred to as a 'Delay repay' scheme.

Who is on strike on 1st February 23? ›

Some Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency ( DVSA ) staff who are members of the Public and Commercial Services ( PCS ) union are planning to take strike action on 1 February 2023. The strike action is part of national industrial action by the PCS union over pay, pensions, jobs and redundancy terms.

Has there ever been a rail strike in the US? ›

Rail unions engaged in brief strikes in both 1991 and 1992, but Congress used the Railway Labor Act to halt them, ordering workers back on the job and imposing a contract upon the workers.

What Amtrak trains will be affected by the strike? ›

The locally impacted trains are the California Zephyr, which departs from Emeryville en route to Chicago, and the Coast Starlight, a West Coast train that travels from Seattle to Los Angeles and passes through the Bay Area, Amtrak spokespersons said.

Why is Amtrak cancelling so many trains? ›

According to Amtrak, the cancellations are the result of a rail industry control system that continues to experience intermittent communication issues.

Why is Amtrak cancelling routes? ›

Amtrak said it is canceling all long-distance trips starting on Thursday amid a looming railway strike that could disrupt the U.S. economy, resulting in lost productivity of $2 billion a day. The potential work stoppage stems from a labor dispute between railroad companies and their unionized workforces.

Is there a train strike on the 18 December? ›

Additionally, there will be an overtime ban across the railways from 18 December until 2 January, which will affect the number of services that can run. Staff at Avanti West Coast will strike on Sunday 11 and Monday 12 December in regional action.

Will there be train strikes on 23rd December? ›

There will also be a local strike on East Midlands railway organised by Unite on Friday 23 and Saturday 24 December. This strike involves workers who maintain railways, such as signallers and maintenance workers. RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said these strikes will have a “minimal” impact on Christmas.

Will there be a train strike on 24th December? ›

Railway Trades unions have announced strikes and industrial action, over December and January that will affect rail services from Saturday 24 December 2022 to Sunday 8 January 2023.

What is it called when you work on the railroad? ›

Rail yard engineers, dinkey operators, and hostlers. Railroad brake, signal, and switch operators and locomotive firers. Railroad conductors and yardmasters.

Why are rail workers going on strike? ›

RMT members working for 14 train companies will stage a fresh strike on 2 June in their long-running dispute over pay, jobs and conditions, the union announced. The strike will see 20,000 staff in catering, stations and working as train managers take action, affecting train services throughout the country.

Why don't rail workers get sick days? ›

The 1936 Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act (RUIA) prevents states and municipalities from providing rail workers with paid sick leave. The act was created in the wake of the Great Depression to provide a national insurance pool for workers who couldn't collect state unemployment insurance benefits.

What is the driver of a train called? ›

A train driver, engine driver, engineman or locomotive driver, commonly known as an engineer or railroad engineer in the United States and Canada, and also as a locomotive handler, locomotive engineer, locomotive operator, train operator, or motorman, is a person who operates a train, railcar, or other rail transport ...

Will a rail strike affect the trucking industry? ›

How Railroad Strikes Could Impact the Supply Chain. In the event of a railroad strike, the train freight loads would have to be moved in a different way. This impact on the supply chain would be felt by nearly every business that relies on shipping, including the trucking and cargo ship industries.

What union do train drivers belong to? ›

The RMT was formed in 1990 through a merger of the National Union of Railwaymen (NUR) and the National Union of Seamen (NUS) to create a single transport industry trade union.

Will railroad strike affect gas? ›

A prolonged railroad shutdown will constrain the nation's fuel supply by disrupting the availability of ethanol, which is often an essential component of gasoline and diesel exhaust fluid, which most heavy- duty trucks need to run.

What would happen if the railroads shut down? ›

Railroads such as Union Pacific, BNSF, CSX and Norfolk Southern carry cars, coal, chemicals, grain, imported goods and other products and raw materials throughout the country. A shutdown — even a brief one — would delay critical shipments and ripple across the economy.

Did the workers win the strike or were they forced to go back to work? ›

Some workers did win a repeal of the onerous wage cuts that had triggered the strike in the first place, but most employees were forced to return to work without a pay increase. Individuals singled out as strike leaders often found themselves fired and blacklisted for their participation in the uprising.

Will any trains run on 15th September? ›

Will any trains run on 15 September? Yes. Passengers can expect to be told to attempt to travel only if essential, but as with previous strike days some trains will run.

Will the train strike go ahead on 15th September? ›

The planned railway strike action on September 15 and 17 is suspended. “We express our deepest condolences to her family, friends and the country.” The strikes were set to take place at fourteen rail firms, and involve 40,000 workers.

What dates are train strikes planned in October? ›

Rail strikes have been organised for the following dates:
  • Saturday 1 October.
  • Wednesday 5 October.
  • Saturday 8 October.
Sep 30, 2022

What dates are the rail strikes in November? ›

It stated that negotiations were continuing over an additional series of strikes affecting specific rail companies in November, on the dates below:
  • Avanti West Coast: Saturday 5 November, Wednesday 9 November.
  • C2C: Tuesday 8 November.
  • East Midlands Railway: Saturday 5 November.
  • South Western Railway: Wednesday 9 November.
Nov 15, 2022

Are there rail strikes on 29 October? ›

ScotRail general grades RMT members will take part in 24-hour strike action on Saturday, 29 October - the second day of strike action as part of the trade union's dispute over pay with the train operator.

Is there a rail strike on August 19? ›

Strikes affecting TfL services will take place on Friday 19 August.

What days are the network rail strikes in August? ›

The continued industrial action was supported by 90% of voting members on a 53% turnout. On 3 August RMT workers on the London Underground network, and London Overground trains served by Arriva Rail London, announced a 24-hour strike for 19 August; workers at Arriva Rail London had rejected a 5% pay offer.

Who is striking on 13th August? ›

' ASLEF members at nine companies – Avanti West Coast; CrossCountry; Greater Anglia; Great Western Railway; Hull Trains; LNER; London Overground; Southeastern; and West Midlands Trains – will strike on 13 August.

Are there any more rail strikes in October 22? ›

There are currently no further rail strikes planned, but with no signs of disputes between unions and National Rail being settled, more are likely to be on the way. Unions must give two weeks' notice of any official action, which means the next walkouts could not come until late-October at the earliest.

Will there be more train strikes in December? ›

Rail staff have announced a new round of strikes in December 2023 and January 2023 in a long-running dispute over pay and conditions. Widespread disruption to travel is expected across the country on these dates. The dates are: Tuesday 13–Wednesday 14 December 2022.

What days are the train strikes in November? ›

The Tube and Overground strike is still set to take place on Thursday 10 November instead, with major disruption expected. Network Rail workers represented by the Transport Salaried Staffs' Association (TSSA) were also set to walk out on Saturday 5 November, Monday 7 November and Wednesday 9 November.

Will trains be running on 19th September? ›

Yes, trains will be running on Monday 19 September with a normal timetable expected.

What dates are the train strikes in October? ›

Rail Strike Update: Strikes 1st, 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th October...
  • Wednesday 5th October – ASLEF.
  • Thursday 6th October – TSSA (GWR management staff including our control centre)
  • Friday 7th October – TSSA.
  • Saturday 8th October – RMT.
Oct 5, 2022

What are the dates of the train strikes over Christmas? ›

Northern Rail has advised passengers not to travel on 24 or 27 December due to the strike. Thousands of workers, including key signalling staff, will not sign on for shifts between 6pm on 24 December and 6am on 27 December, when Network Rail had planned about £120m-worth of engineering works.

What dates are the Christmas rail strikes? ›

What are the dates for rail strikes in December 2022?
  • On Friday 16 December and Saturday 17 December most train journeys across Britain will be disrupted or completely cancelled.
  • Unite union will be striking on Friday 23 December and Saturday 24 December, affecting East Midlands Railway only.
Dec 15, 2022

Who is striking on 9 November? ›

Wednesday 9 November (national rail strikes)

National rail strikes are taking place. The majority of TfL's services, including most of the Tube, will continue to run. However, some disruption to Bakerloo and District Underground lines, London Overground and Elizabeth line services is expected.

Is there a train strike 19th November? ›

On both Saturday 19th and Monday 21st November, RMT members at Network Rail's signalling centre near Didcot Parkway will be on strike.

Are there train strikes on 26 November? ›

The next scheduled strike is on Saturday 26 November 2022 , and it is action that has been taken by Aslef.

Will there be train strikes on the 19th December? ›

The first strikes will be taking place from Tuesday 13 December until Wednesday 14 December. Whilst the second will be from Friday 16 December until Saturday 17 December. The last rail strike dates in December are from 6pm December 24 (Christmas Eve) until 05.59am on December 27 (Bank Holiday).

Are all the trains on strike on the 15th of September? ›

On Thursday 15th September, ASLEF (train drivers), Unite (Train Care Depot staff) and the RMT (on board and station staff, and Network Rail signallers) will be on strike.


1. Train strikes: Why are strikes due to happen this week? | #Shorts | Newsround
(BBC Newsround)
2. UK train strikes underway with union and government in standoff – BBC News
(BBC News)
3. Train strikes disrupt Christmas travellers
(Sky News)
4. More UK rail strikes ‘very likely’, RMT says
(Channel 4 News)
5. December train strikes: Dates and what to expect at Christmas
(Daily Mail)
6. When are the next UK train strikes?
(The Independent)
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