In general, you believe that the flights you have booked will leave on time. Unfortunately, the reality is often different: your flight can be delayed (or even cancelled). The good news is that as a passenger you have certain rights and in most cases you can request compensation for your delayed flight. That can be quite a relief!
Are you entitled to compensation?
If your flight has been delayed for more than three hours and if the flight delay is covered by Regulation (EU) No 261/2004 of the European Parliament, you may be entitled to compensation. You have lost a lot of time, and time is money! A delayed flight can have various causes and depending on the circumstances, you may or may not be eligible for compensation. The amount of compensation for a delayed flight can add up to 600 euros! You don’t want to miss out on that money, do you?
But how do you apply for compensation? You start such a process typically with submitting a claim. This can be quite a hassle. Most airlines simply don’t want to offer compensation and will therefore call your situation "exceptional". Or they will simply ignore your claim, which is the easiest way. Fortunately, there are various online agencies that can look after your claim and enforce your rights. Such agencies help you claim the compensation you are entitled to for the delayed flight. They have the ability to communicate with airlines on a different level, or better said: they can negotiate with airlines on an equal footing. If you hire such an agency, it will save you a lot of time, stress and disappointments.
Leave the work to the experts
Why is it better to leave the work to the experts and not, for example, take personal action or hire a lawyer? The good thing about filing a complaint yourself, is that you don’t need to spend money. On the other hand, it is very time-consuming, the chance of success is nil and it can give you a lot of stress. You simply don’t have sufficient knowledge and experience to handle a case like this yourself. If you would like to hire a lawyer, this will cost you a lot of money. In addition, a considerable amount of time is involved in the process and it is often unclear whether you will succeed. The straightforward alternative is to ask help from an agency of experts and let them do all the dirty work. They have experience in claiming compensation for flights that did not depart on time, work fast, and generally have a good chance of success. Last but not least: you can lean back and wait for further updates.
How does claiming compensation work?
Submit your travel documents fast and easy
The agencies that arrange the compensation for you often have an extensive service. Most allow you to perform a quick initial check to determine the likelihood that you qualify for a fee. If it turns out that you are indeed entitled to compensation, then you can provide all your relevant flight details in a simple and quick way. When you have entered the necessary information, you will usually receive a response within a few days. The agency will possibly ask you for additional information if necessary. In other cases, they will tell you to relax: it is now up to them to work on the claim. When it turns out that you are entitled to compensation, all you need to do is authorize the agency to process your claim.
Extensive research is conducted into your situation
Processing the claim is more than just checking your entitlement and forwarding your flight information. The agencies will also conduct in-depth research into your flight and the circumstances. For example, they will also look at the weather conditions because this information can have a significant impact on the claim.
In addition, the agencies will take responsibility for writing letters to the airline, which will include all the necessary information and evidence, as well as references to current laws. Also, if you have travelled with other people, you can include these people in your claim. Those passengers just have to authorize you to handle their claims.
Possible legal proceedings
Should the airline ignore your claim, even if you are entitled to compensation, then the agency can take the matter to court. If this happens, there are usually no extra costs involved and in most cases those agencies win the court case for you.
If you have doubts or questions during the process, you can count on such agencies at any time as they are always ready to answer your questions. Normally they will keep you informed about developments.
‘No cure, no pay’!
Finally, in most cases you only pay those agencies if you actually receive compensation. If you are not entitled to compensation, the agencies will not charge you anything. They call this a "no cure no pay" policy. And we think that's fair!
Additional advice for a delayed flight
1.First of all make sure to keep your boarding pass and all other important travel documents. If you have accidentally thrown them away, check your emails to see if you can retrieve this information. No claim can be made without this information and evidence!
2.In addition, write down the exact time the aircraft arrived. This is not the moment of landing, no, it is the moment when the aircraft reaches the gate and the doors are opened.
3.Besides, keep all receipts of additional expenses like food and drinks which resulted because of the late flight. In case of delays, the airline must ensure that you can get comfortably through the extra hours. If the flight is delayed until the following day, do not hesitate to take advantage of a night’s accommodation. The airline must provide you with a hotel room.
In short: if you have suffered a delayed flight, make sure to save all important documents and ask help from a specialised agency to apply for your compensation!
This article was last updated in March 2020, which means that certain information may be out of date.