Denied Boarding

Your rights in the event of a denied boarding

Flight overbooked?

Were you not allowed on the flight? In some situations, the airline may refuse passengers on a flight. This could be due to an overbooked flight in which they have to offer care and assistance. You may be entitled to compensation in the event of denied boarding or overbooking.

When is the airline allowed to refuse you boarding the flight?

In some cases, the airline may refuse you from boarding the flight. This is allowed, for example, if you do not have the correct travel documents with you to travel to or from a specific destination. Other reasons why an airline may refuse you are health, safety or security reasons.

Flight is overbooked

Is your flight overbooked because the airline has sold more seats than it has available or have they used a smaller aircraft? Then the airline must first ask for volunteers in exchange for benefits as to be agreed between the airline and the passenger. If there are no volunteers, you may be refused on the flight and you will then be entitled to financial compensation under Regulation 261/2004.

Compensation for denied boarding

According to Regulation 261/2004, you are entitled to compensation if the airline is an EU-registered company or if the flight departs from an airport in the EU. The amount of the compensation is determined based on the distance of the original flight.

Amount of compensation in case of flight delay or cancellation

Flight destinations within the EU

  • € 250 compensation for a flight up to 1500 km
  • € 400 compensation for a flight of more than 1500 km

Flight destinations outside the EU

  • € 250 compensation for a flight up to 1500 km
  • € 400 compensation for a flight from 1500 km to 3500 km
  • € 600 compensation for a flight of more than 3500 km

The amount of the compensation is reduced by 50% if the difference in the arrival time between the original flight and the replacement flight is less than:

  • Two hours for all flights of 1500 km or less
  • Three hours for all flights within the EU of more than 1500 km and for all other flights between 1500 and 3500 km
  • Four hours for all other flights

Claim your compensation on transfer

When you have been refused boarding on your flight, it is important that you were present at the airport and that you have evidence of this, such as a boarding pass. In addition, it is always useful to have the airline write down on paper that you have been refused on your flight without a valid reason. This proof is required to file a claim with the airline. You can claim your compensation yourself or you can seek help from various legal third parties.

Tips in the event of a flight disruption

  • 1 Be careful with accepting vouchers. These are often difficult to exchange and have a limited validity. They may also limit your right to compensation.
  • 2 Write down all of the details concerning your flight incident and ask for a written statement from the airline.
  • 3 Save all documents, tickets and receipts in the event of costs due to problems with your baggage.
  • 4 Ask your travel agent or insurance for help to contact the airline upon your return.
  • 5 Above all, always remain calm and try to enjoy your journey!