Know your Rights to Flight Delays

If your flight was delayed you may be eligible for compensation or refund under EU 261 rule. You may claim up to 600€.

Check your flight for free if the airlines’ owes you money.

Flight Delays

There are different kinds of delays. There are short ones that cause some frustration. Then there are really long ones that cause agitation. The EU law tries to treat passengers according to the length of the delay.

If the delay is of more than 2 hours, airlines should provide free meals, refreshments, two phone calls and access to emails or fax.

Hotel accommodation and transport facility (between airport and hotel) should be the airline’s responsibility during an overnight delay.

If the airlines do not provide these services, ask them. It’s your right, as long as you have a valid ticket.

Hotel, travel, and meals are not cheap. Under EU law, the airlines should pay for these, not you.

Here is how this works. The airline should give you vouchers for food, hotel, etc. If they don’t, go ahead and ask for it.

If they still don’t help you, get creative. Pay the bills but keep the receipts. Then show these when filing flight delay claims. But be reasonable with expenses.

Airlines are not obligated to pay for fancy things. If you handover receipts for alcohol, luxury hotels or expensive meals, you won’t get back any money.

Here is great news. Even for bad weather conditions if the other airlines were operational, you still may have the right to these services. Now you know why it pays to know your rights.

Rights to Compensation

Under EU 261 rule, you are entitled to compensation up to 600€ per passenger for late flights of more than 3 hours. It should be the airlines’ fault for the lateness.

No claims can be asserted under extraordinary circumstances such as Tsunami, or extreme weather conditions, as these are beyond the control of the airlines.

You are eligible for flight delay compensation if the delay was over 3 hours and…

  • your flight departed from an EU airport, or
  • your flight arrived at an EU airport with an EU-registered airline
  • the delay was not due to any extraordinary circumstances

What should you do if your flight was delayed?

  • ✔ ask for the reason behind flight disruption
  • ✔ get a confirmation in writing from the airlines’ customer service
  • ✔ note the actual arrival time (i.e., when the plane door was opened)
  • ✔ collect additional evidence (e.g. photos, boarding pass, receipts, etc.)
  • ✔ enter your flight details into our compensation calculator
  • ✔ check if you are eligible for compensation
  • ✔ assign us with your case for a hassle-free claim (we work on a “No Win = No Fee” basis)

When can you claim compensation for flight delays?

Here are the situations in which EC Regulation 261/2004 entitles you up to 600€ in compensation:

  • When you arrive in or depart from an EU Member State.
  • If you fly with the airline which operates under the terms of the EU Member State and either the airport of arrival or departure is in the European Union.
  • When despite having a valid reservation airlines deny boarding your scheduled flight.

These are the general requirements by which abide while making a claim under EU Regulation 261/2004.

NOTE: If you missed your connecting flights due to delay or cancellation, you may have the right to flight delay refund or compensation. Refund of the flight ticket for the part of the journey not covered. And, compensation if you reached the final destination with a delay of over 3 hours.

“Act of God” Facts

The following table describes which incidents are considered to be an “Act of God” and which are not.

Flight disruption which is caused by a recognized “Act of God” do not qualify as grounds for compensation.

However, certain circumstances are considered to be an “Act of God” and compensation may be claimed.

Incidents “Act of God” (Yes/No)
1. Strike Yes
2. Normal Bad Weather No
3. Volcano eruption, thunderstorm or ice rain Yes
4. Technical problem No
We will, for example, let you know if other airlines were actually able to operate during a strike.
Should we discover that other airlines were able to operate normally on that particular day, your flight would not be considered to be delayed due to an “Act of God” and we will be able to make a claim on your behalf. This comparison can only be made with the help of our flight database which is one of the best flight databases in the market.

Why Choose Us?

It is possible that you are not able to claim your compensation directly from the airline.

In such cases, we can help you solve the problem and also provide you with detailed facts about passenger rights in accordance with EU Regulation EC 261.

We are always able to find out what the original reason for the delay was and we can help you by informing you about the real situation.

Claim Flights helps all passengers seeking EU flight compensation due to delayed or canceled flights.

We help familiarize you with your rights on flight delays or cancellations and ensure an easy settlement with the airlines.

We provide authenticated services that help you to get the reimbursement you deserve. EU 261 rule was developed in order to provide assistance to air passengers when confronted with delays, cancellations of flights and consequently seek compensation.

We adhere firmly to the legal requirements, allowing you to lean back and relax while calmly knowing that we will be successfully conducting the entire process.

We always keep you updated and thus you’ll always know the status of your claim making the entire process easier.

Finally, as the ultimate service provider, we will help familiarize you with your rights. You have absolutely nothing to lose. If we do not win, no fees will be charged.

Dr. Mirko C. Ulbrich

Dr. Mirko C. Ulbrich


Dr. Mirko C. Ulbrich is founder and CEO at Claim Flights GmbH. He has made many Himalaya hiking trips, but has found a passion to grow roses and go hiking in the alpes.

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