Who are The Rail Ombudsman?

We’ll do our best to resolve any problems you’ve had with Southeastern in a fair and reasonable way. Please give us the opportunity to try to resolve your complaint.

If you’re unhappy with the response you receive, you have the right to appeal to the Rail Ombudsman. The Rail Ombudsman is there to help resolve on-going complaints between us and our passengers. It’s free to use their services and they are independent of the rail industry. They don’t take sides, but just look at the evidence available. 

They will help us both to try to reach an agreement, but if this doesn’t happen, they will make a decision based on the evidence they’ve received. If you agree with their decision, then we have to act on what they say.

You can appeal to the Rail Ombudsman if:

  • you’ve received a “deadlock” letter from us which means we cannot take your complaint any further, but you remain unhappy
  • we haven’t been able to resolve your complaint within 40 working days of receiving it; and
  • no more than 12 months have passed since we sent you our final response.

For information on how The Rail Ombudsman works for consumers, please see the Quick Start Guide from The Rail Ombudsman.

There are some complaints that the Rail Ombudsman won’t be able to look into, for example if it’s about the way one of our services has been designed, industry policy, or if your complaint relates to an event which took place before the Rail Ombudsman service was established.

If that’s the case, then they’ll contact you to let you know. If possible, they will transfer your complaint to another organisation that may be able to help you further, such as Transport Focus or London TravelWatch – the independent consumer watchdogs for the rail industry. They will independently review your complaint and where appropriate, follow things up on your behalf.

Contacting the Rail Ombudsman

The Rail Ombudsman can also be contacted through their website or via the following ways:


Telephone: 0330 094 0362 (Monday to Friday 09:00 – 17:00)

SMS and Whatsapp: 07427 580 060

Textphone: 0330 094 0363

X: @RailOmbudsman

rail ombudsman