The practice of reserving seats without using them drops from 20.5% last year to 2.5% in January due to the sanctions announced by the company
Infrequent use of Renfe’s free Media Distancia passes has fallen significantly, from 20% last year to 2.5%, after almost the first month of 2023. Some of the customers who had the Media Distancia pass booked trips they not names later. And they caused the blockade of thousands of train seats that were actually left empty.
Renfe believes that this significant decrease in irregular use recorded this year is due to the measures approved by the Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda (MITMA), which came into effect on December 7 and for which the sales and use exploitation of Renfe’s conventional free multi-trip tickets from Media Distancia, which, among other things, restricts the formalization of travel and the purchase of season tickets and repeatedly penalizes irregular use.
In the case of conventional medium-distance rail services, users must purchase a different pass for each departure/destination journey, which is valid for unlimited travel between the customer’s requested origin and destination, in both directions.
To deal with this kind of malpractice, Renfe has already announced that it will seize the deposit of 20 euros and that it will cancel the free subscription for users who have not canceled the ticket at least three times with a minimum of two hours of reservation of the place in advance if you are not going to travel by train.
The railway operator shall withdraw the season ticket of the line on which irregular use has been detected and shall not issue a new season ticket linked to that holder for any medium-haul origin-destination within 30 days of the cancellation.
Before withdrawing the payment and the deposit, Renfe will send two messages to the holder when it is determined that they have not definitively traveled without canceling the reservation with the required prior notice. The third time abuse is committed, we proceed to punishment.
At the same time, the maximum number of trips that can be formalized per subscription is limited to four daily round trips, and it is not possible to formalize two trips in the same direction until three times the scheduled travel time has elapsed.
Source: La Verdad