Thanks to protections granted by the EU261 regulation, passengers on flights that have been cancelled could be eligible for financial compensation. The regulation protects passengers’ rights when the airline makes a mistake. If your flight was cancelled and you believe the airline to be at fault for the cancellation, then you could be entitled to financial compensation.
Let’s take a look at what qualifies you for protections under the EU261 regulation.
Depending on the Circumstances
EU261 is not all-inclusive. There are certain circumstances that could lead to a cancelled flight that will not grant you compensation. If the issue is something that the airline could not control, then you will not be eligible for financial compensation. This includes security threats, police intervention, extreme weather, worker strikes, etc.
However, if the circumstance that leads to the cancellation was under the control of the airline, then you’re likely eligible for compensation. Overbookings are a prime example of something protected by the EU261 regulation. If you lose your seat because the airline overbooked and had to bump you, then you are certainly up for reimbursement.
If there was something wrong with the plane that could have been addressed prior to the flight and was easily easy to attend to, then you’re likely up for financial compensation. This is a very nuanced situation and some cases might not be eligible for financial compensation. Take heed when filing a claim based on this as you might have a harder time earning reimbursement than other cases.
How Much Are You Eligible For?
If your flight was cancelled for reasons that the airline could have controlled, then you’re likely eligible for compensation. But how much can you earn when filing a claim against the airline? Well, that depends on a couple of factors. For cancelled flights specifically, the only thing you need to consider is the distance your flight was intended to cover.
The longer the flight, the more money you may be eligible for. Flights that were less than 1,500 km will only grant you a €250 refund. However, if your flight was between two European Union destinations and covered more than 1,500 km, then you could receive up to €400. If the flight was a non-internal flight covering between 1,500 km and 3,500 km, then you could earn up to €400 as well. If your flight was non-internal and covered more than 3,500 km, then you could €600 in refunds.
Check both your destination and how far away it was to determine how much money you should be earning back from the airline.
Cancellations Versus Delays
Luckily, when it comes to cancelled flights, the rates are pretty cut and dry. There is a little bit more nuance to delays that makes determining how much you can earn much more difficult. When it comes to cancellations, you only have to worry about the distance your flight would have covered. Chances are, the longer flights were more expensive to book, so they’ll be more lucrative in how much you earn back.
Delayed flights require passengers to determine how far the flight was as well as how long the delay was. If your flight was delayed less than three hours, you won’t be eligible for compensation. The longer the delay, the more you can earn.
It’s easier to determine how much money you could earn back from a claim under EU261 protections, but you should still have all of your receipts in order when filing your claim. The airline will try to find loopholes to avoid paying you for a cancelled flight, so have your paperwork ready.