Delayed Flights

Passenger Rights

If you depart from an EU airport or arrive in the EU on an airline based in the EU, UK, Iceland, Norway or Switzerland, and your air journey is disrupted, you have significant rights and entitlements under EU law, which covers situations where your flight is cancelled/delayed/overbooked or you are denied boarding, are downgradedyou missed a connecting flight or your luggage is lost/ damaged/delayed.

One of the most important pieces of EU air travel rights legislation is Regulation (EC) 261/2004, which established rules for these rights below.

If your flight is delayed, you have the right to be provided with the following:

Assistance

A minimum level of care involves:

  • For delays of 2+ hours (subject to flight length) passengers must be offered: free meals and refreshments, two free telephone calls, free access to Internet for e-mails;
  • Where a stay of 1+ nights becomes necessary, passengers must also be offered: hotel accommodation and transport between the airport and the place of accommodation;

If the airline is unable to provide the above free of charge, they should reimburse passengers for expenses based on receipts.

 

Rerouting

If passengers cannot reach their final destination due to a delayed flight, such as in the case of missing a connecting flight due to the first flight delay, they have a right to a return flight to the original point of departure, at no extra cost.

In this case, the right to assistance, as above, also applies.

 

Refund

For delays of 5+ hours, passengers may opt for reimbursement of the full cost of the ticket.

Once the refund is accepted, there is no right to assistance, as above.

 

Compensation

Passengers whose flights reach their final destination 3+ hours after the scheduled arrival time are entitled to compensation for the delay, unless this is due to extraordinary circumstances. The amount of compensation payable is as follows:
• short haul flight: €250 per person
• medium haul flight: €400 per person
• long haul flight: €600 per person

For non-EU long-haul flights over 3,500 km (long haul), compensation may be reduced by 50% if you arrive at destination less than 4 four hours after the scheduled arrival time.