You have different rights in the event of cancellation or delay because of a strike. In the event of a cancellation or long delay, you are entitled to care and possibly, entitled to compensation.
Right to care
In the event of a flight delay or cancellation due to a strike you are always entitled to care. The level of care and the moment you are entitled to receive care, depends on the distance of your scheduled flight. The airline should provide you with meals, refreshments, access to communication facilities and in the event of an overnight stay, a hotel with transfer.
You are entitled to care in the following situations:
- With a delay of two hours or more on flights of 1500 km or less
- In case of a delay of three hours or more on all flights within the EU of more than 1500 km and for all other flights between 1500 and 3500 km
- With a delay of four hours or more on all other flights
Flight cancelled due to strike
If your flight is cancelled due to a strike, the airline must always offer you a replacement flight or a refund of the ticket for those parts of journey that you have not completed.
Example: You have booked a flight from Amsterdam to Paris. An announcement is made three days before your scheduled departure that the French ATC will go on strike and the airline has been forced to cancel your flight. While the situation is classified as an extraordinary circumstance and you are not entitled to a financial compensation, the airline must provide you with a replacement flight or a refund of the money for your ticket.
No right to compensation in the event of a strike by third parties
A strike initiated by a third party such as air traffic control (ATC), baggage handlers, customs or airport staff are considered an extraordinary circumstance. The airline has no control over these situations and this cannot be considered inherent to the activity of the airline.
Right to compensation in the event of a strike by airline staff
If the airline’s own staff has announced that it is going on strike, you are entitled to a reimbursement for your purchased ticket. This cannot be viewed as an extraordinary circumstance because the airline has control over its own staff. In this case, depending on the distance of the flight and your arrival delay, you are entitled to compensation up to € 600 per person.