Flights are delayed or cancelled all the time. Air traffic controller strikes making the news in the past few weeks have travelers wondering if they can, or should, be compensated for cancelled flights. Is there a recourse here to get back some of the money spent? When is an airline required to compensate you?
Well, there are instances when they are required to compensate for delays, cancelled flights, and lost or damaged passenger belongings.
Between flights in the US and those in the EU, passengers in the EU have more protections and entitlements than passengers in the US. So for Irish travelers, if you are wondering if the airline owes you money, below are some things you can be compensated for when you travel.
You Can Be Compensated For:
There are a few more options available when it comes to cancellations. If your flight was cancelled, the airline must provide two weeks notice to avoid paying compensation and must offer you an alternative flight for the date of your choice, or a full refund of the ticket price.
The airline is required to give 2 weeks notice for cancellations. If you were notified your flight has been cancelled less than seven days in advance, you can receive compensation, or be offered a choice between having your flight re-routed or re-booked for a later time.
You should be compensated when your flight arrives more than 3 hours late, not due to extenuating circumstances. Inclement weather such as an unexpected snowstorm or blizzard can delay travel and are valid reasons for a late arrival. If this is the case you may be eligible to receive comfort measures such as a meal accommodation or paid hotel room if the flight has to be rebooked. The amount of your compensation will depend on the length of the flight. You will receive €250 pp for 1500km or less, €400 pp for 1500km – 3500km and €600 pp for 3500km or more.
However, the compensation is reduced by 50% if the airline can re-route you to your destination in :
- two hours for flights less than 1500km
- three hours for flights of 1500km to 3500km
- four hours for flights over 3500km
Save any receipts for meals, snacks, or expenditures for time spent waiting. If you are not offered reasonable accommodation or during a delay such as meals, transportation, or lodging, you may be able to submit your receipts to the airline for a refund. You will want to keep all of the original receipts because copies may not be accepted. If a flight is more than 5 hours late you will be due a full refund.
If you were denied boarding because your flight was overbooked, you are entitled to the same compensation as is listed above, proving you did not voluntarily give up your seat. You can also be compensated if you missed your connection due to a delayed flight.
Lost or Damaged Luggage
If your checked luggage is lost, damaged, or does not arrive, you can be compensated up to $1,200 by the airline. However, this only applies if the damage was caused by the airline and not as a result of a product defect.
Dealing with airlines over issues like these can be very frustrating and time-consuming. One alternative when traveling in Ireland is to carry insurance from AA Ireland Travel Insurance because it can cover a lot of these issues a lot quicker and easier than dealing with the airlines yourself. You can be covered for cancellations, lost luggage, and time delays and more.