EU Passenger Rights

Many travellers have experienced flight disruption when taking a flight for business or leisure. Common issues include delayed departures, cancellations, or the frustration of being told that you cannot board because the flight is overbooked. But did you know that this kind of travel disruption is regulated by law - and that you might be eligible for a claim of up to £520 to cover your inconvenience?

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Why airline passengers need to know their rights

Different countries have their own regulations which define the ways that airlines are responsible for refunding and compensating passengers when their service fails. In Europe, EU passenger rights are protected by a particularly stringent piece of legislation: the EC Regulation 261 2004. Under this regulation, passengers are entitled to receive up to £520 for disrupted flights.

Even better - in most cases, a period of three years, and sometimes even longer, applies to these claims. So if you haven't claimed for flight disruption in the past, you may still be able to. The good news too is that AirHelp makes the entire process as easy as possible. We have helped millions of people across the world to understand their rights as flight passengers and to secure them the compensation that they are owed. The first step is simply to input your flight details on our website, where we can tell you if you are likely to have a claim. It's free, quick, and simple and AirHelp will help you with the entire claim process from end to end. Don't be like the 85% of customers who don't know about their rights when it comes to flight disruption - read on to find out more.

AirHelp is here to help you get compensation for flight delays and cancellations. Find out what you could be entitled to.

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About AirHelp

AirHelp is the world's largest air passenger rights organisation, here to help air travellers secure compensation for delayed, cancelled, or overbooked flights .

We make claiming compensation easy and stress-free. Whether you are unsure of your rights, lack the time, or simply want an expert to handle your entire claim for you, AirHelp can help you get what you are rightfully owed.

We operate on a no win, no fee basis, so you can check your compensation risk-free.


Claiming Compensation for Flight Delays and Cancellations

How do you know when you should claim compensation for a delayed or cancelled flight? Though the law can be complicated, we're here to break it down for you:

Delayed flights: you may be able to claim compensation if your flight arrived 3 hours or more late.
Cancelled flights: you may be eligible for compensation if your flight was cancelled less than 14 days before it was due to depart.
Overbookings: you are owed compensation any time you are denied boarding through no fault of your own — so long as you didn't voluntarily give up your seat.

We should note that if extraordinary circumstances were involved, arirlines are under no obligation to pay compensation. Examples of extraordinary circumstances include bad weather, travel restrictions, and air traffic control strikes. Though these situations cause delays and cancellations, the airline isn't at fault, so can't be expected to offer compensation.

Remember these are European flight regulations and so only apply to flights departing from an EU airport, or flights landing in the EU with a European airline. The table below makes it clear which flights are covered:

Claim up to £520 in compensation if your flight has been delayed, cancelled, or overbooked within the last 3 years.

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How Much Flight Compensation?

DistanceCompensation
All flights under 1,500 kmUp to £220 per person
Internal EU flights over 1,500 kmUp to £350 per person
Non-internal EU flights between 1,500 - 3,500 kmUp to £350 per person
Non-internal EU flights over 3,500 kmUp to £520 per person

Table shows values in € as specified in EC 261

In some circumstances the compensation amount may differ from the standard amounts shown above. The easiest way to find out what you’re owed is to use our Compensation Check.


What to Do if Your Flight is Delayed or Cancelled

If you experience a flight delay or cancellation, here's what you should do:

  • Hold onto your boarding pass and other travel documents.
  • Ask why the flight was delayed or cancelled.
  • Request food, drinks, and if necessary, free transport and hotel accommodation.
  • If you had a cancelled flight, ask for an alternative flight or a refund.
  • Keep all receipts of any extra expenses you may have had, including necessary food, clothing, etc.
  • Be careful not to sign any waivers or accept vouchers that will require you to waive your right to compensation.

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AirHelp is a part of the Association of Passenger Rights Advocates (APRA) whose mission is to promote and protect passengers’ rights.

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