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Compensation for London Heathrow Airport Delays and Flight Cancellations

Being stuck at the airport is many travelers’ nightmare — and we’re here to help if it happened to you. If you experienced London Heathrow Airport flight delays or cancellations, AirHelp can explain your rights, and tell you whether you're owed any compensation.

You might be entitled to as much as $700 (€600) per person if your airline was responsible for the delay. Enter your flight details into our easy-to-use compensation calculator and find out what you’re owed today.

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Air Passenger Protections at London Heathrow Airport

Because London Heathrow Airport (LHR) is situated in the EU, travelers from anywhere in the world are very likely to be protected by a law known as EU Regulation No. 261/2004.

This means that if you had a flight delay, cancellation or overbooking at London Heathrow Airport, you do have rights! The law specifies the care airlines must provide. Plus, when the airline is responsible for the delay, EC 261 lays out the amount of compensation passengers are owed — up to $700 (€600) per person. You usually have up to 3 years to claim it too.

It doesn’t matter where you are from, only where you flew and whether it was with an EU airline.

Are you Protected by EC 261?

Route EU Airline Non-EU Airline
Departures fromLondon Heathrow Airport to anywhere Yes Yes
Arrivals atLondon Heathrow Airport from inside EU Yes N/A
Arrivals atLondon Heathrow Airport from outside EU Yes No
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Claim Compensation for London Heathrow Airport Delays

Airport delays are stressful, both on your mind and your wallet. The good news is that because of EU Regulation EC 261, you might be able to claim up to $700 (€600) compensation if your flights are delayed by 3 or more hours.

There is one notable exception when it comes to London Heathrow Airport delays. If there are extraordinary circumstances involved, airlines don’t have to pay compensation for a flight delay. Extraordinary circumstances are situations outside of the airline’s control. A good example is something like unsafe weather conditions at London Heathrow Airport, or an air traffic control issue. Because the airline didn’t cause the delay, they can’t be expected to pay out for it.

Another point to note, the law sees a delay as the time you finally arrived at your destination compared to the landing time written on your ticket. This is important for delayed flights from London Heathrow Airport, because it’s not actually how long you were kept waiting in the departures lounge that counts. For compensation at least, it’s the amount of time between when you were supposed to land and when you actually landed at your final destination that matters.

You can learn more about flight delay compensation here

Compensation for London Heathrow Airport Flight Cancellations

EU regulation, EC 261, empowers passengers when there are London Heathrow Airport cancellations. By law, your airline must offer you an alternative flight to your destination — or a refund, if that's what you'd prefer.

In addition, you might be owed up to in compensation if the cancellations were announced less than 2 weeks before you were due to depart.

There are some important exceptions, such as if your airline managed to find you an alternative flight that arrived at a similar time to your original. Or if London Heathrow Airport canceled flights rather than the airline — as that means your airline wasn't actually responsible for the cancellation. These types of examples are termed extraordinary circumstances, and include situations like an air traffic control strike, unsafe flying conditions at London Heathrow Airport, or anything outside of an airline's control.

You can read more about flight cancellation compensation here.

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How Much Compensation?

London Heathrow Airport Delays and Flight Cancellations
Distance Compensation
Under 1,500 km Up to €250 per person
Over 1,500 km and within EU Up to €400 per person
Between 1,500 - 3,500 km Up to €400 per person
Over 3,500 km Up to $700 (€600) per person
 
 
Some exceptions may need to be taken into account. The easiest way to be sure of what you’re owed, is to use our free compensation check.

Delays in London Heathrow Airport - What to Do

Sure, delays or flight cancellations are anything but ideal. But for your peace of mind, here’s what you should do if it happens to you:

  • Collect proof of the delay or flight cancellation (e.g. emails from the airline, photos of the departure board).
  • Keep all your travel documents.
  • Ask your airline why your flight's been affected.
  • Ask the airline to pay for your meals and refreshments.
  • Pay attention to what the airline offers you — don't sign anything that would waive your right to compensation.
  • Keep all receipts that prove the disruption cost you extra money.
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