Flight Delay Compensation

Flight Delay Compensation

Travellers are often forced to deal with many logistical challenges during a journey. While the majority of airlines are highly reliable and modern, there is no doubt that errors can and will occur from time to time. One of the most frustrating situations will undoubtedly occur if a flight is suddenly delayed or cancelled. You might be forced to completely change your plans and such an inconvenience can be difficult to deal with if you are not aware of your rights as a traveller. Let's look at what the EU regulations have to say as well as if there are any insurance policies that can protect you against such unfortunate situations.


EU Laws: What Are Your Rights?

The most basic concept to ALWAYS remember is that you have the right to claim for compensation if a flight has been delayed by more than three hours under current EU laws. The main issue is that airlines do not often make this fact clear. However, a ruling put forth in 2014 has clarified the stipulations behind this act. The carrier is fully responsible for compensation if the delay has been caused by circumstances such as a technical fault or a crew strike. The only time when you will NOT be compensated if is an “act of god” such as sudden bad weather is determined to be the root cause of the delay. If the delay has been caused by the carrier, you are entitled to receive free food and drink, access to sanitary facilities, transport to and from a nearby hotel and the airline will be obliged to pay for any accommodations that may be required in the event that the flight is eventually cancelled.


The Role of Insurance Plans

Frequent flyers will often opt for a type of insurance known as travel delay coverage. These can be completely separate policies or included within a more comprehensive package. Unlike the basic protection outlined by the European Union, you will also be compensated fro natural disasters, civil disorder (such as protests), severe weather and even a stolen passport. So, it is clear to see that this is a much more robust form of protection. While not necessarily suited for a one-off holiday, it can indeed be the perfect option if you regularly travel to other portions of the world (such as is often the case with business travellers).


What to Keep in Mind

If you select travel delay coverage, keep in mind that any compensation you receive from an airline will be automatically deducted from your claim. Also, this coverage is only applicable when you are EN ROUTE to the airport or airline in question. There are also normally limits set each day that you have been forced to change your travel plans. These limits vary between different providers, so be sure to ask in advance before committing to any type of contract.