The EU regulation #261 protects passenger rights in case of flight cancelation. The regulation sets out the pre-conditions under which the airlines are obligated to issue the compensation to passengers, which are further discussed below.
If your flight is canceled:
- The airline is under the duty to inform you about that as soon as possible and offer an alternative route.
- You are entitled to request the reimbursement of the price paid for the ticket or the provision of alternative transportation by the airline as soon as possible.
- You are entitled to financial compensation by the airlines up to 600 EUR if there are relevant pre-conditions established by the regulation.
It is important to know that if the airline informed the passenger about cancellation less than 14 days before departure. The passenger may be entitled to compensation even if the airline reimbursed the price paid in the ticket of the canceled flight.
The amount of compensation is dependent on the flight distance between the departing airport and the final destination and is calculated as follows:
- If the flight distance is below 1500 km – EUR 250;
- If the flight distance is between1500-3500 km. – EUR 400;
- If the flight distance is above 3500 km. – EUR 600.
In case of the flight cancellation, the airline is under the duty to pay the compensation if following pre-conditions are met:
- The passenger checked-in on time;
- The cancellation is not caused by “Extraordinary Circumstances” outside the airline’s control.
- The flight departed from the airport of the EU member state or the flight departed from the airport of Non-EU member state, but the airport of the final destination is located within EU and the flight was operated by EU airline company.
- The airline informed the passenger about cancellation less than 14 days before the departure. In that case, the duty of compensation is also dependent on how early or late the alternative flight offered to passenger lands at the final destination.
The price you paid for the flight is not relevant. You are entitled to compensation irrespective of the price paid for the ticket.
The airline is under no obligation to pay compensation if:
- The passengers were informed about the cancellation more than 14 days in advance before the departure
- The flight was not canceled due to “Extraordinary Circumstances”;
Please be informed that the air carriers are under no obligation to issue the compensation if the flight cancellation was caused by extraordinary circumstances, which could not have been avoided by the airline. In general, the “Extraordinary Circumstances” refer to the reasons which are outside of the airline’s control. There is no exhaustive list of the “Extraordinary Circumstances” and it shall be determined on a case by case basis. Worth noting, that the scope of “Extraordinary Circumstances” can be changed/updated by judgments and decisions of various courts. Generally, the following fall within the scope of “Extraordinary Circumstances”:
- Bad weather conditions;
- Political or civil unrest;
- Bird strike;
- Security risks not caused by airlines;
- Governmental decisions;
- Any other circumstances outside the airline’s control.
What should I do in case of flight cancellation?
- Consult with the airline representative and request to explain the reasons for cancellation.
- Keep all travel documents (Boarding pass, e-ticket, vouchers provided by Airlines, alternative flight tickets offered by Airline, etc.).
- Inform other passengers about the possible compensation;
- Contact us, tell us the details of your case and send the copies of your travel documentation.
Please note that the information provided on this page related to the passenger rights in case of flight cancellation is of general informative nature and only serves the purpose of providing general information to the passengers. This information should not be considered as legal consultation or the guarantee of compensation or a certain legal outcome. In order to provide you legal assistance, please contact us and our team will study the details of your case.