AirHelp wins against Aeroflot: Yes, non-EU passengers get compensation too
In a recent court case filed by AirHelp, Aeroflot, a Russian carrier, argued that they do not owe their passengers compensation because their airline is not based in the EU and that most of their passengers are from Russia and therefore not EU citizens. The case concerns a canceled flight they had in 2019, which was to depart from Milan, Italy, and headed to Saint Petersburg, Russia.
The laws are clear
Despite Aeroflot’s insistence that they should not have to compensate their passengers time — simply because they aren’t EU citizens, the laws are very clear: according to EU regulation EC 261, delayed or canceled flights departing from an EU airport are eligible for compensation, provided that the airline was at fault for the disruption, and that it meets all other provisions.
To uphold passenger rights, AirHelp filed two separate cases in 2020 in front of the Judges of the Peace in Rome, and again in the United Sections Supreme Court of Cassation (Italian Supreme Court), when Aeroflot continued to challenge the regulation.
On the 10th of November 2021, the Italian Supreme Court ruled in favor of AirHelp and the passengers we represented, declaring that the jurisdiction will always be determined by the place of departure. In this case, Italy, since the flight departed from Milan.
This means that Aeroflot will have to pay their passengers what they are rightfully owed.
Everyone is entitled to compensation equally
The Aeroflot case is a good example of how EC 261 protects air passenger rights, and further cements the fact that you can get compensation regardless of your citizenship or nationality. This is just one of the reasons why EC 261 is one of the strongest air passenger regulations in the world. As an EU regulation, all passengers flying within or from the EU can benefit from it equally, no matter where you are from.
It also doesn’t matter if the airline is based in a country outside of the EU — if you depart from an EU airport and meet all other provisions detailed in EC 261, the flight qualifies for compensation. AirHelp knows this, which is why we pursued the case in court — we believe all passengers are entitled to compensation, and that airlines should continue to uphold the law and maintain high standards of service. AirHelp will continue to fight for air passenger rights.
Did you also know that you can claim for delayed, canceled, or overbooked flights from up to 3 years ago? AirHelp is here to help you check if your flight is eligible — it’s quick, easy, and totally risk-free! Get started with your claim now.