If you have had problems with your flight, you may be entitled to compensation. Regulation 261/2004 specifies when you are entitled to compensation. You can claim this compensation from the airline. In practice, claiming this compensation can turn out to be a difficult task because airlines often do not reply appropriately or at all.
How do you apply for compensation?
You can start this process by filing a complaint with the airline. If they do not respond, if you find the process too difficult or if your complaint is rejected, you can choose one of the following options:
- Consult your travel agent
- Ask your legal assistance insurer for help
- Ask your travel insurer for help
- Transfer your claim to a specialized claim agency
Make a complaint yourself
A claim to the airline can, in most cases, be done via the website of the airline concerned. If this is not the case, you can send a letter to the relevant airline. You can find the correct address on the airline’s website or you can ask your travel agent.
The European Union has published a universal form for lodging complaints regarding Regulation 261/2004 (rights of air passengers). This EU complaint form must be accepted by all airlines and all European national enforcement bodies according to European legislation.
Consult your travel agent
A travel agent not only helps you to book your trip, but also helps you to solve problems that arise during your trip. Was your flight delayed or cancelled, or were you rebooked or denied boarding? Check with your travel agency if they can help you further in claiming compensation.
Ask your travel insurer for help
Various travel insurers offer help when there are problems with your flight, but the compensation can differ significantly per insurance policy. In many cases, for example, you will only receive compensation if your delay is more than 8 hours, while the Regulation states that you are entitled to compensation after a delay of 3 hours. It is therefore wise to check with your travel insurer whether they can offer you the compensation you are entitled to.
Let a specialized claim agency take over the claim on your behalf
In the UK, various claim agencies specialize in the rights of airline passengers. They help hundreds of passengers on a daily basis to obtain the compensation they are entitled to. A specialized claim agency takes the entire claim process out of your hands. They approach the airline and if the airline refuses to pay, they initiate legal proceedings on your behalf. Many agencies work on a no cure, no pay basis. If they are unsuccessful, you do not have to pay them anything. The amount of compensation they hold as a fee differs per claim agency.
Examples of claim agencies are: EUclaim, Flight Delay Compensation. These claim agencies are the only ones in the UK to have access to the unique database of Lennoc Flight Intelligence. This database gives them access to worldwide flight, weather and press data, so that they always have evidence to support the claim against the airline, which can also be used in a court case. On the website of these claim companies, you can easily check whether you are entitled to compensation. After the free advice, you can decide for yourself whether to submit the claim with them or to use one of the other options.
Check whether you are entitled to compensation with: