Having to travel all over the world quite often, it no surprise that travel plans sometimes have to change because of a flight delay or even a canceled flight. These long hours that you sometimes have to spend in the airport, missed connecting flights, stress about ruined vacation days and financial losses stays in the memory for quite a while. But did you know that there’s such a magnificent thing as the airline compensation for delayed flights?
SO HERE’S THE WHOLE STORY!
Quite often you can experience flight delays or cancellation already on your first or second flight, without even having to travel a lot. As we fly a couple of times a month we kinda start to accept that flights are usually not departing on time as a norm.
However, we’ve been lucky not to have many problems with that, as mostly they are delays of 30 min to an hour or two. Until now. Our most memorable flight delay was 36 hours just recently flying from Paris to Los Angeles. Yeah, 36 hours!
So at that moment we really understood how important it is to know about your passenger rights. It’s very beneficial to actually be aware of what to do to get your airline compensation for delayed flights. Even though we have a huge travel experience, it turned out that there were few things we didn’t know before to be able to get the best out of that situation.
It’s equally important to also know about services like Skycop, where to ask for help in the kind of situations when you’re not getting the compensation you’re entitled to.
KEEP READING TO FIND OUT WHAT EXACTLY YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT YOUR RIGHTS AS A FLIGHT PASSENGER.
See the Contents
WHAT ARE THE FLIGHT PASSENGER RIGHTS
In those times when your flight is delayed or even canceled, there are certain things you are entitled to. Now thinking back to the time when our LA flight was delayed, I feel quite happy knowing that our airline actually treated us right. But that’s not always the case.
When we arrived at the Paris Charles De Gaulle airport, we already knew that our flight would be delayed for two hours. As the hours started to pile up one by one reaching already 4 and more, the airline offered us store credit to get food and drinks at the nearby shop. As the delay hours went up more, we got more store credit for food.
It sure was annoying not knowing when we’re going to fly. After about 7 hours of waiting it was announced that our flight is canceled that day. We started to panic a bit, as we didn’t know what’s going to happen and how we will get to LA. Everyone who waited for the flight was asked to leave the security area and go back to Airlines check-in counters to get further details.
As we got to the airline counter, they had already pre-arranged a nice airport hotel for the night for everyone with dinner and breakfast included. It turned out to be not so bad, as we weren’t loosing much because of arriving one day late to LA.
A nice hotel and dinner in Paris are not so bad at all. Some people even went back to the center of Paris that night to extend their Paris vacation.
The next morning we were told the new flight time and would return to the airport. All of this was covered by the airline and we didn’t have to pay anything. That’s how it should be!
Some of the passengers had called the airline to ask about compensations and the airline confirmed that all the passengers are getting the canceled flight compensation. The amount you’d get usually depends on the length of the flight, which in this case resulted in 600 EUR per passenger. So basically we got a free trip.
FLIGHT COMPENSATION AMOUNTS
Normally the flight compensation amounts wary from 250 EUR if you reached your destination more than 3 hours late and travel distance was up to 1500 km. If the distance was between 1500 km and 3500 km you’d get 400 EUR per passenger and over 3500 km gets you 600 EUR.
If you look at it from this perspective, it’s not even so bad to have a delayed flight unless of course, you’re actually missing something important that day. Due to a delay, you might end up flying for free as the compensation can be more than the fare that you paid for the flight.
BUT THAT’S NOT ALWAYS THE CASE…
It depends on where or from where are you flying. If you’re flying within the US only, then there are a very few rights that you’ll be able to take an advantage of in oppose to the European Union (EU) related flights. If you’re flying from anywhere in the EU or even if you’re flying from the US but going to any of the EU countries, you’re in luck. Here’s why!
AIR PASSENGER RIGHTS FOR FLIGHTS WITHIN THE US
If you are flying within the US only and none of your flights or connections are related to Europe, then the US regulation says that you’re not entitled to any compensation or free meals, hotels stays etc in any cases except when you’re denied boarding because of the overbooked flight.
That’s a common thing in the US for airlines to overbook their flights to ensure that they are full.
So if you’re denied boarding because of that, there you are entitled to compensation based on two factors:
1. The difference in scheduled arrival time at your destination compared to your original itinerary if you accept re-routing on another flight.
2. Whether your flight is a US domestic flight or an international flight.
You should always check with your airline what are your options in case of any flight disruption. There are different regulations in place for every airline, so each situation will be different.
However, if you’re traveling to or from Europe like we did on our Paris, France to Los Angeles, US flight, then situation compensation-wise will be way better!
AIR PASSENGER RIGHTS ON EU RELATED FLIGHTS
Travelers in the EU are lucky in a way that the EU has common regulation of passengers’ flight rights. The main points to remember when flying in our out of the EU are that you’re eligible to the EU flight delay compensation in cases when your flight was delayed and was late to arrive at your destination by more than 3 hours.
It also applies in cases when your flight was canceled by the airline 14 days before departure. Or the third most popular case which is the same as in the US, when the flight was overbooked and you’ve declined the boarding because of that.
In all these cases you’re entitled to get your basic needs covered, such as a phone call, food, beverages and when the delay is long, even transportation and accommodation costs.
Sometimes you have to pay for these things yourself first and then claim the refund with the airline. In other cases airlines are covering this in an organized way, offering food and drink vouchers, as well as organized transportation to a pre-organized hotel.
The same goes for a situation when the flight was delayed for less than 3 hours, or delayed because of the weather conditions or strike, these basic needs are supposed to be covered by the airline.
HOW TO GET AIRLINE COMPENSATION FOR DELAYED FLIGHTS OR CANCELED FLIGHTS?
Another important part is how to get the delayed or canceled flight compensation from your airline if you were flying to or from the EU. This tends to be a bit more tricky, but there are good solutions how to get this done either by yourself or with a help of professionals fighting for air passenger rights, like Skycop.
In our case, it was made easy as one of the passengers with a legal education talked to the airline and got them to agree to pay the compensation to all the passengers who’ll claim it. However, in many cases, airlines try to refuse to pay the compensation you’re entitled to.
They are able to do so as there are some exceptional cases in the EU passenger rights regulations in which airlines don’t have to compensate passengers. These exceptions include delays caused by natural disasters like volcano eruptions and other “extraordinary circumstances”.
So when you’d send the airline a simple claim to get your compensation, airlines tend to be reluctant to pay. They quite often reject these claims referring to these extraordinary circumstances, even if that’s not the case.
At this point, you need to start fighting. If you don’t have the time and the legal knowledge, the best way how to proceed in these situations is to find someone who can help you.
The flight compensation company Skycop offers exactly these kinds of services to help you get the compensation you’re entitled to. And the best part – from this point on it doesn’t cost you any more time and money.
Skycop is a company who’s passionate about fighting for air passenger rights against airlines. They are also doing a lot to educate passengers on their rights in an easy and understandable way. Check out the Skycop website to learn more about what you can get out of a delayed flight.
I read through it myself to be fully ready how to react the next time when my flight is canceled, as it took me a bit as a shock the previous time. We were just lucky with other passengers around with a good knowledge of this process. But that’s not going to be the case always. So it’s good to be prepared.
WHY CHOOSE SKYCOP TO TAKE CARE OF YOUR FLIGHT COMPENSATION?
In cases when you need a professional help to get your flight compensation after the airline rejected your claim or even in cases when you want to just start the whole process, Skycop can help you save the time and do all of that for you.
They have over 20 years of experience in aviation. So you can be sure they know what they’re doing. It also doesn’t matter from which country is the airline or yourself, as they have a knowledge of international legislation by partnering with a law firm that’s part of Global Law.
When seeking help from Skycop, you don’t have to spend a cent. If your claim is one of the rare cases that end up rejected by the airline after Skycop has done its work, you don’t have to pay them anything. But if they win the case for you, they’ll keep the small share of the compensation that you receive. So basically it’s free money.
Flight delays and canceled flights are never a pleasant experience. But it’s nice to be compensated for it at least. So for the future and even for the recent past, make sure you claim the compensation that you’re entitled to for every flight that was late by at least 3 hours.