Even seasoned travelers know that delays can happen frequently in air travel. As more and more people book flights, airport capacity struggles to keep up with this untended growth. As a result, flight delays and cancellations continue to swell. Of course, there are many reasons why flights are commonly delayed. Below, we’ll take a look at the top reasons why flights do get delayed, airport capacity problems notwithstanding. We’ll also take a look at whether or not you could be eligible for flight compensation should your flight be delayed for these common reasons. Why do flights get delayed? Let’s take a look.

Airport Congestion

Much to the frustration of passengers everywhere, flights can commonly get delayed due to airport congestion. As the number of passengers and flights grows, airport congestion becomes a bigger problem, thus delays are more commonplace. It isn’t uncommon for a plane captain to decide to wait for connecting passengers during peak hours or hold the plane on the runway for stragglers.

This can lead to some rather long delays. Additionally, it may not be easy for planes to depart as quickly as they once did. Other planes come in and leave the airport at the same time, leading to delays and congestion. Can you get compensation for airport congestion? Well, yes and no. Generally, if your flight is delayed for more than 3 hours, you may be eligible for compensation.

Weather Conditions

You look outside the airport window and see nothing but sunshine. Why is your flight delayed? Flights can get delayed due to weather conditions at the departure airport, along the route, or at the destination itself. Even if the weather outside looks delightful, your flight can still get delayed or cancelled if weather conditions prove risky elsewhere. Before taking flight, the airline will look at weather conditions for the entire journey. If there is something along the way that could endanger passengers or crew, the flight will be delayed or cancelled. Keep in mind, if your flight is delayed or cancelled due to weather, you’re not eligible for compensation under EU regulations.

Security Concerns

There is always more happening at an airport than what meets the eye. Behind the scenes, crews and personnel are always working to make sure flights and airports are as safe as possible. Unfortunately, this vigilance can lead to some rather hefty delays. It isn’t uncommon for a plane to become delayed if security personnel find that something may be awry with a passenger or even a piece of luggage loaded onto the plane. If this happens, they will demand that the flight and luggage be unloaded, resulting in delays. In this situation, you are not eligible for compensation.

Issues With The Aircraft

No one wants to board a plane that hasn’t been thoroughly inspected. However, during these inspections, engineers may find that it isn’t safe for a particular aircraft to fly. This can lead to delays or even cancellations. Technical issues are one of the major reasons why flights get delayed. Of course, you should know that this does not fall under “extraordinary circumstances” and is not out of the airline’s control. Therefore, you may get compensation if your aircraft has been delayed due to technical issues for 3+ hours.

Waiting For Connecting Passengers

Sometimes a flight delay is as simple as waiting for connecting passengers to arrive. Luckily, these flight delays don’t last long and tend to be rather insignificant. Connecting passenger delays typically occur at peak times and when airport congestion is an issue. Know that if you are flying to or from Europe or on a European airline and your flights is delayed 3 or more hours, you may be entitled to compensation.

Delays Happen

Delays are a simple part of travel and often cannot be avoided. Luckily, you may be entitled to compensation for your troubles should a flight delay set you back 3 or more hours.