The European Union regulation known as EC 261/2004 protects passengers' rights while holding airlines legally and financially responsible for delays and disruption. if you have experienced a delayed flight of more than three hours, were denied boarding to your flight, had a flight cancellation within 14 days of your trip, or had a flight rerouted, you should know more about how the EC 261 regulations can help you claim the compensation you're owed. Passengers should note that this must have happened within the last three years, and that these regulations do not apply if the delay was caused by extraordinary circumstances such as bad weather or political unrest.
The EC 261/2004 regulations are known to be some of the most comprehensive legislation in the world regarding passengers rights during air travel. These regulations have been created to aid and protect all passengers that face an unexpected turn of events during their air travels from, and in some cases to, a European airport.
The EC 261/2004 protects passengers that were on a flight traveling from a European airport or into Europe with a European carrier from anywhere around the world. In fact, if a passenger successfully fits all the criteria outlined by the EC 261 regulations, they may be able to claim up to $700 per person in compensation.
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AirHelp is the world's largest air passenger rights organization, here to help air travelers secure compensation for delayed, canceled, 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.
How do you know when you should claim compensation for a delayed or canceled 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.
Canceled flights: you may be eligible for compensation if your flight was canceled 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:
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|All flights under 1,500 km||Up to €250 per person|
|Internal EU flights over 1,500 km||Up to €400 per person|
|Non-internal EU flights between 1,500 - 3,500 km||Up to €400 per person|
|Non-internal EU flights over 3,500 km||Up to €600 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 Calculator.
If you experience a flight delay or cancellation, here's what you should do:
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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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