RECOMMENDATION FOR SECOND READING on the Council position at first reading with a view to the adoption of a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on rail passengers’ rights and obligations (recast)

17.3.2021 - (12262/2020 – C9‑0011/2021 – 2017/0237(COD)) - ***II

Committee on Transport and Tourism
Rapporteur: Bogusław Liberadzki

Procedure : 2017/0237(COD)
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on the Council position at first reading with a view to the adoption of a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on rail passengers’ rights and obligations (recast) (12262/2020 – C9-0011/2021 – 2017/0237(COD))


(Ordinary legislative procedure: second reading)

The European Parliament,

 having regard to the Council position at first reading (12262/2020 – C9‑0011/2021),

 having regard to the opinion of the European Economic and Social Committee of 18 January 2018[1],

 after consulting the Committee of the Regions,

 having regard to its position at first reading[2] on the Commission proposal to Parliament and the Council (COM(2017)0548),

 having regard to Article 294(7) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union,

 having regard to the provisional agreement approved by the committee responsible under Rule 74(4) of its Rules of Procedure,

 having regard to Rule 67 of its Rules of Procedure,

 having regard to the recommendation for second reading of the Committee on Transport and Tourism (A9-0045/2021),

1. Approves the Council position at first reading;

2. Notes that the act is adopted in accordance with the Council position;

3. Instructs its President to sign the act with the President of the Council, in accordance with Article 297(1) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union;

4. Instructs its Secretary-General to sign the act, once it has been verified that all the procedures have been duly completed, and, in agreement with the Secretary-General of the Council, to arrange for its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union;

5. Instructs its President to forward its position to the Council, the Commission and the national parliaments.



On 27 September 2017, the European Commission proposed a recast of Regulation 1371/2007 of the European Parliament and of the Council on rail passenger rights and obligations with a view to better protect train travellers in case of delays, cancellations or discrimination.

On 9 October 2018, the TRAN Committee adopted its first reading report with 39 votes in favour, 2 against and 6 abstentions. Plenary adopted the Parliament’s first reading position on 15 November 2018 with 533 votes in favour, 37 against and 47 abstentions. At the start of the new legislature on 24 September 2019, the TRAN Committee adopted a decision to enter into interinstitutional negotiations on the basis of the first reading report with 47 votes in favour, 0 against and 0 abstention.

The Council on its side adopted its general approach for negotiations on 2 December 2019.

Interinstitutional negotiations started on 28 January 2020 during the Croatian Presidency and concluded successfully on 1st October 2020, during the German Presidency, after four trilogues. On 21 October 2020, Coreper endorsed the provisional agreement and on 28 October, the TRAN Committee approved it on 29 October 2020 with 38 votes in favour, 7 against and four abstentions.

Following legal-linguistic verification, the Council on 25 January formally adopted its first reading position in accordance with the provisional agreement. Parliament is now invited to proceed to its second reading and approve the Council position so as to confirm the agreement.


Main elements of the agreement

The agreement reached significantly improves the provisions of the existing Regulation on a number of issues such as:

- A complete system will now be in place for persons with reduced mobility (PRMs) that will be able to travel with assistance after a 24h pre-notification from 30 June 2026 compared with 48h until now. A 36h pre-notification will apply in the meantime. PRMs will be able to travel if needed with accompanying person or an assistant dog free of charge.

- If delays of over 100 minutes occur, rail operators will be under the obligation to offer rerouting options to passengers whatever the circumstances and help them find the best alternatives, as it is the case with air carriers. In case circumstances so require, meal and refreshment will need to be provided and accommodation costs will be reimbursed.

- New detailed provisions on bicycles have been introduced with an obligation for railway companies to provide dedicated spaces:  all new rolling stocks and refurbished ones will need to be equipped with a minimum of 4 bike spaces, with a possibility to provide for more. Refusal of bicycles on a specific train should be duly justified with a possibility for passengers to get reimbursed when this occurs.

- An obligation for operators to offer through-tickets for journeys composed of successive railway services  has been introduced. It will apply from the date of application for international and long-distance services and after five years also for regional services.

- Overall provisions on information to passengers have been strengthened, especially in case of delays where an obligation to keep them informed of developments as soon as the information is available will be mandatory.

A force majeure clause similar to what applies for air passengers was inserted in the text but with very detailed provisions to avoid too broad interpretation. It would apply in case of unforeseen events such as extreme weather conditions, a major natural disasters or a major public health crisis outbreak, and would discharge operators from the obligation to pay compensation delays but other obligations to assist passengers and other reimbursement clauses would still apply.

The new rules will apply in two years. During the trilogue, a final extension of five years was agreed for existing derogations for domestic rail services for those Member States that have been making use of these derogations. Member States can also decide, under specific circumstances to partly exempt cross-border regional, urban and suburban services. However, exemptions cannot apply to the provisions on passengers with reduced mobility, bicycles, through-tickets and re-routing from cross-border services.



As Council’s position is in conformity with the provisional agreement reached during the interinstitutional negotiations, the Rapporteur recommends endorsing it without amendments.



Rail passengers’ rights and obligations (recast)


12262/1/2020 – C9-0011/2021 – 2017/0237(COD)

Date of Parliament’s first reading – P number

15.11.2018 T8-0462/2018

Commission proposal

COM(2017)0548 - C8-0324/2017

Receipt of Council position at first reading announced in plenary


Committee responsible

 Date announced in plenary







 Date appointed

Bogusław Liberadzki





Discussed in committee





Date adopted





Result of final vote







Members present for the final vote

Magdalena Adamowicz, Andris Ameriks, José Ramón Bauzá Díaz, Izaskun Bilbao Barandica, Marco Campomenosi, Ciarán Cuffe, Jakop G. Dalunde, Johan Danielsson, Karima Delli, Anna Deparnay-Grunenberg, Gheorghe Falcă, Giuseppe Ferrandino, João Ferreira, Mario Furore, Søren Gade, Isabel García Muñoz, Jens Gieseke, Elsi Katainen, Kateřina Konečná, Elena Kountoura, Julie Lechanteux, Bogusław Liberadzki, Peter Lundgren, Benoît Lutgen, Marian-Jean Marinescu, Tilly Metz, Giuseppe Milazzo, Cláudia Monteiro de Aguiar, Caroline Nagtegaal, Jan-Christoph Oetjen, Philippe Olivier, Rovana Plumb, Dominique Riquet, Massimiliano Salini, Sven Schulze, Vera Tax, Barbara Thaler, István Ujhelyi, Petar Vitanov, Elissavet Vozemberg-Vrionidi, Lucia Vuolo, Roberts Zīle, Kosma Złotowski

Substitutes present for the final vote

Paolo Borchia, Brice Hortefeux, Robert Roos

Date tabled








Peter Lundgren, Robert Roos, Roberts Zīle, Kosma Złotowski


Paolo Borchia, Marco Campomenosi, Lucia Vuolo


Mario Furore


Magdalena Adamowicz, Gheorghe Falcă, Jens Gieseke, Brice Hortefeux, Benoît Lutgen, Marian-Jean Marinescu, Giuseppe Milazzo, Cláudia Monteiro de Aguiar, Massimiliano Salini, Sven Schulze, Barbara Thaler, Elissavet Vozemberg-Vrionidi


José Ramón Bauzá Díaz, Izaskun Bilbao Barandica, Søren Gade, Elsi Katainen, Caroline Nagtegaal, Jan-Christoph Oetjen, Dominique Riquet


Andris Ameriks, Johan Danielsson, Giuseppe Ferrandino, Isabel García Muñoz, Bogusław Liberadzki, Rovana Plumb, Vera Tax, István Ujhelyi, Petar Vitanov




The Left

Kateřina Konečná


Ciarán Cuffe, Jakop G. Dalunde, Karima Delli, Anna Deparnay-Grunenberg, Tilly Metz





Julie Lechanteux, Philippe Olivier

The Left

João Ferreira, Elena Kountoura


Key to symbols:

+ : in favour

- : against

0 : abstention



Last updated: 31 March 2021
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