Know your rights! When does a passenger become entitled to financial compensation?

Every airline ticket represents a contract to transport a person from point A to point B. Since in most cases this involves international flights, the fulfilment of this contract is governed by international legal regulations, agreements and conventions, which determine when and to what extent passengers have a right to compensation. At the same time, in accordance with this framework, legal norms exist, applicable in various parts of the world, whose objective is to strengthen consumer protection.
 
Of course, the legal protection of the consumer in the European Union is different from the environment in other parts of the world. Regulation (EC) no. 261/2004 represents the highest level of consumer protection in air transport so far, but it does not apply worldwide. This issue is highly complex and intricate, which is why we are providing you with the following basic information which you need for basic orientation. You will find out what you are entitled to, and in what cases.  
 
International rules with global effect govern a sensitive issue for the passenger – delay or loss of luggage, and damage to health or property arising from air transport. There is an obligation to compensate for damage arising from the delay or loss of luggage, to a maximum amount of €1,200. You must report this damage to the carrier which issued the lost luggage report, by a short deadline of just 21 days from the flight date. The legal regulation for these purposes is the so-called Montreal Convention of 28/05/1999, which binds carriers registered in the vast majority of countries in the world.
 
Passengers in Europe most frequently enquire about rules related to flights irregularities, which are governed by Regulation (EC) no. 261/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council, establishing common rules on for compensation and assistance to passengers affected by transport irregularities. For proceedings as per this norm, traffic irregularity (failure to comply with a transportation contract) must be claimed against the carrier operating the flight. An obligation to compensate passengers arises if the carrier is a responsible for the operational irregularity, i.e. it was not caused by events beyond his control. These include, for example, adverse weather, natural disasters and strikes.
    
Obviously, financial compensation is a significant cost for the carrier, which they try to minimize in various ways. Some carriers only compensate clients in legal proceedings as standard. The unclear rhetoric of a legal norm is often used; it lacks a more precise interpretation which would be legally binding. On the basis of our experience, knowledge of the issue and available information, in the vast majority of cases we can settle our clients' claims more effectively than they would be able to themselves
 

In particular,traffic irregularities mean:

Cancelled flight

If a carrier cancels a flight for which they have issued you a ticket, more than two weeks before the flight date, they must provide you with an alternative flight according to availability of which they inform you, or refund you the fare. If the period is shorter, they are obliged to provide you with an alternative flight  according to availability of which they inform you, or refund you the fare, plus pay you a lump sum financial compensation.
Compensation is not provided if, on the alternative connection, you would travel at times similar to your original flight.
 

More info

Delayed flight

If the flight is delayed by more than two to four hours (depending on the distance), the passenger has a right to care, i.e. information, two telephone calls or internet access, refreshments, and possibly a hotel and transport from/to the airport, to an extent corresponding to the time of day and the length of the delay. In addition to this, they also have the right to compensation, if they reached their destination by the delayed flight three or more hours late. 

More info

Missed connecting flight

A situation when you miss your connecting flight due to a delay on the previous one. The same extent of rights applies here as for a delayed flight. 

Denied boarding

You are denied boarding a flight even though you arrived on time and with a valid airline ticket for check-in, because they sold more seats than the capacity of the aircraft. You have the same rights as in the case of a delayed flight. 

The amount of financial compensation is determined by the flight distance!

250 EURO

to 1500 KM

400 EURO

1501 – 3500 KM

600 EURO

OVER 3500 KM

An entitlement Right to compensation arises when:

  • Failure involving the aircraft or crew, flight planning error
  • Flight cancellation due to economic or commercial reasons
  • An aircraft malfunction whose cause does not lie in an uncontrollable e­vent
  • Flight route change due to economic or commercial reasons
  • A different cause which the operating carrier could or should have foreseen

An entitlement to financial compensation does not arise if:

Of course, there are a number of factors which can affect a flight for which the carrier cannot bear responsibility, and therefore is not obliged to compensate the passenger. These include the following cases:

  • Bad weather
  • Natural disaster
  • Security threat during the flight, at the airport or otherwise (related to the flight)
  • Strikes, including strikes by own personnel
  • Situations involving political instability, terrorist attacks or extraordinary security measures
  • Insufficient air route capacity (airspace congestion)
  • Damage to the aircraft due to external factors

Strike

Although it is the subject of frequent discussions, under current legislation the carrier is not obliged to compensate passengers if an ongoing strike by their own or another company's employees prevents the standard preparation and operation of a flight. They are obliged to provide care, an alternative flight, or refund the fare.

Bad weather

Air transport is completely dependent on weather conditions. The evaluation of the specific situation is in the hands of the crew, which is responsible for the passengers' safety. The carrier is obliged to provide an alternative connection, care or refund the price of the airline ticket.

Natural disaster

Natural forces (hurricanes, volcanic activity, floods etc.) can restrict air transport for several days, without an entitlement to financial compensation arising for the passengers. 

Omezení letového provozu

Growing demand leads to a situation where airspace capacity is not sufficient. A situation where air traffic control does not grant permission to operate the flight at the planned time can be traced retrospectively. In this case, the carrier is obliged to care for the passengers, but not compensate them for the delay.

Step by step on-line

Submission of an on-line request

Fill in a simple on-line form in just a few steps. The form will tell you what level of financial compensation you are entitled to. Choose the contractual conditions according to the programmes offered – Price List. In addition to entering the details of the flight and your contact details, you also add consent to the processing of personal data and the wording of the Contract of Mandate. If your event cannot be included among the predefined incidents, write to us using the Contact Form.

We will verify whether you are entitled to financial compensation free of charge*

After sending the request, an account will be created for you in which you can monitor the status of the request you submitted. Log-in details will be sent to your e-mail account. Subsequently, specialist workers will contact you within 2 days to inform you whether you are entitled to financial compensation.
 
*according to the chosen programme
 

You are entitled to financial compensation

If our specialist workers assess your request as legitimate, and require further information, they will contact you in writing or by telephone. If a further explanation is not necessary, they will send you a Power of Attorney to be filled in and signed, on whose basis you will grant our expert team the authority to arrange financial compensation. The worker assigned to you will regularly inform you in writing about the status of your request, and possibly consult proposals for further action with you. The collection time of the financial compensation differs due to the influence of many factors. The average settlement period is roughly 3 months

You are not entitled to financial compensation

If we assess that you are not entitled to financial compensation, we will inform you in writing of the reason why you do not have a claim, and if applicable inform you (if the given problem requires it) what to avoid in the future.

We will collect and pay financial compensation

As soon as we collect financial compensation, we will inform you about it in writing.
We will deduct commission according to the conditions you selected, and pay the compensation to your bank account. If your case is resolved by a legal process, the law office which dealt with the case will pay you the financial compensation, after deducting the commission.
 

We will finish

Even if your request is resolved without an entitlement to financial compensation, a client account has still been created for you. If you have another unpleasant experience with a flight, for example if your flight is delayed or cancelled, you can use your account once more.

SUBMIT AN ON-LINE APPLICATION

Didn't land on time? Get paid for it!

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