How to claim your air passenger rights

If you depart from an EU airport or arrive in the EU flying with an air carrier based in the EU, UK, Iceland, Norway or Switzerland, and your air journey is disrupted, you have significant rights and entitlements under EU law.

Regulation (EC) 261/2004 established common rules on compensation and assistance to passengers, which air carriers are obliged to comply with, in the event of flight delay, cancellation or denied boarding.



EU* air passenger rights apply when:

  • Your flight is within the EU and is operated either by an EU or a non-EU airline
  • Your flight arrives in the EU from outside the EU and is operated by an EU airline
  • Your flight departs from the EU to a non-EU country operated by an EU or a non-EU airline
  • You have not already received benefits (compensation, re-routing, assistance from the airline) for flight related problems for this journey under the relevant law of a non-EU country.
*EU means the 27 EU countries (including Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Martinique, Réunion Island, Mayotte, Saint-Martin (French Antilles), the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands) as well as IcelandNorway, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. It does not include the Faeroe Islands, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands.

Should problems arise, such as a flight being cancelled or delayed for any reason, or you are denied boarding, you have significant entitlements and protections under the applicable European Union consumer rights legislation.

Learn more about air travel rights in the EU here. The legislation covers: 




If you think your rights have not been respected, there are several forms of redress you can use. However, you should always send your complaint to the airline first.

The Airline

You should always send your complaint to the airline first using either the complaint form provided by the airline or the EU air passenger rights form.

National Authorities

If you don’t receive a reply from the airline within 6-8 weeks or if you are not satisfied with the reply, you can lodge a complaint with the relevant national authority in the country where the incident took place. The national authority should provide you with a non-binding legal opinion on how to proceed with your claim. FOr domestic complaints in Ireland, you can contact the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA)  in Ireland.

European Consumer Centre Ireland

The European Consumer Centre (ECC) Ireland is a member of the European Consumer Centre Network (ECC-Net), which offers consumers across the European Union advice on their consumer rights and legal protections when shopping and travelling in another European Union Member State or European Economic Area country. ECC-Net members cooperate closely to help settle complaints between consumers and businesses based in different EU countries, as well as in Norway and Iceland. See how to make a complaint here:

Alternative or Online Dispute Resolution Entities

You can also try to resolve your dispute using out-of-court procedures or an Alternative Dispute Resolution entity (ADR). If you bought your ticket online, you can submit your complaint via the Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) platform. ADR and ODR are only available to EU residents.

The National Courts

You may wish to resort to formal legal action and present a claim for compensation under EU rules using the European Small Claims procedure. For flights between EU countries (operated by one airline), you can submit your claim either at the place of arrival or departure. If your consumer complaint was not resolved and your claim does not exceed €2,000, you can avail of the Small Claims Procedure in Ireland.


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