China’s train capacity sometimes cannot satisfy customer demands. The phenomenon that ordinary people usually cannot buy a train ticket exists especially during the Spring Festival period, summer holidays, minor vacations, and China National Day and Labor Day “golden weeks”. China Railway Corporation (CR) will implement revised policies for refunding and changing tickets from September 1, 2013, which should bring more unneeded tickets into circulation.
Customers will be charged 5% of original ticket price for a train ticket refund 48 hours or more before the train departs, 10% at 24–48 hours before departure, and 20% for less than 24 hours before departure. At official ticketing outlets, tickets are scanned and the refund fee calculated automatically by the national system, so there is no dispute.
From September 1, 2013 customers don’t have to return to the place where they originally bought a ticket to get a refund or change the ticket. Customers can refund or change tickets at any designated ticket selling outlet in China.
Customers won’t be charged for a refund if a train’s late arrival or other fault of China Railway Corporation causes them to miss their connection, or if the service is cancelled or unreasonably delayed.