Rail passengers lost a record of four million hours to train delays last year, the worst since records began, a consumer watchdog has found.
Over 8m passenger journeys were delayed last year, equating to around 80 train delays per day. Cancellations, meanwhile, averaged 660 per day in 2018, the highest number since records began in 2011.
The results, compiled by Which, come on the same day that the national timetable is overhauled with the addition of 1,000 extra services per week across the country.
Last year, the same shakeup resulted in chaos with commuters, with widespread delays, cancellations and overcrowding.
The train companies have insisted that they have learned the lessons from last year and they have acted to ensure that any disruption this time round is minimal.
One of the train operators at the heart of last year's chaos, Govia Thameslink Railway, accounted for more than a third of all cancelled trains last year. It also racked up 1m of the 3m compensation claims that were lodged in the wake of last May's timetable chaos.
The findings also reveal how passengers claim for only a third of journeys where money is owed for delays and cancellations, with many unsure of how or where to claim or because it was too much effort.
Train firms have also fallen short on telling passengers of their right to claim compensation, which was not done for six in ten journeys.
Last week, 84 MPs called for a system of automatic compensation for passengers.
Neena Bhati, Which head of campaigns, said: “Passengers have faced a torrid time on the trains since the beginning of last year where the rail industry has fundamentally failed on punctuality and reliability. People then face a messy and complex compensation system which puts them off claiming when things go wrong.
“A vital way the government’s rail review and industry can start to restore faith is by introducing automatic compensation for delays and cancellations so that passengers don’t have to fight to get the money they are owed.”