Flying within Europe and experienced a delay? An apology for the inconvenience is not enough. In fact, you may be entitled to receive up to $700 in compensation according to a law called EC 261. Learn about your rights and get compensated with the help of AirHelp.
If your flight departed from the EU and was delayed by 3 hours or more, it may be worth checking if you are owed compensation. Under a law known as EC 261, air passengers who have experienced a lengthy delay may be owed as much as €600 per person from the airline.
EC 261 is a law that protects air passengers and keeps airlines financially accountable for delays where they are considered at fault. Air passengers who have had an EU flight delay can, therefore, expect to receive monetary compensation, as well as the right to care if they are stuck waiting at the airport. While waiting for their flight, a passenger may receive essential food, drink, and access to communication, and, if necessary, a stay at a hotel paid for by the airline.
However, there are some exceptions: EU flight delays where the airline had no control over the situation, known as extraordinary circumstances, do not qualify for compensation. This includes delays caused by bad weather, health or safety emergencies, air traffic strikes, and other unavoidable circumstances. However, if the delay is due to something that the airline can control, such as a maintenance issue, you can submit a claim.
Check if you're owed compensation on our free Compensation Calculator.
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:
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.
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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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