In Europe, a new court ruling spanked airlines trying to wriggle out of reimbursing passengers for delayed or cancelled flights. If you have European travel plans in the future, you should know about this
The European Union’s court of justice ruled that passengers whose flights arrive more than three hours late are entitled to compensation of up to nearly $800. Unless, that is, the delay is due to extraordinary circumstances outside the airline’s control such as bad weather.
The ruling doesn’t let airlines off the hook for mechanical difficulties, some strike actions, and weather reasons that can’t be backed up. Airlines had fought against liberalizing the terms of payment for years, claiming a mechanical problem, for example, ought to relieve them of the obligation of reimbursing passengers.
But the court ruling is definitive, and here’s who must abide by it: All airlines whose flights start or end in any of the European Union’s 27 countries.
Here’s what to do if you’re delayed longer than three hours: Download the iPhone or Android app called YourPassengerRights. Fill out a form, and you’ll learn if you have a valid case.
Then go to the web site Flight-Delayed.co.uk. For $33, Flight Delayed will do all the work for you.