Experts have estimated that more than €10 billion worth of passenger compensation due to flight delays and other inconveniences is left unclaimed. Passengers can claim compensation for the inconvenience caused due to flight delays or if the flight is cancelled within less than 14 hours before departure time. They are even due compensation if they are not allowed to board the flight, but according to reports, “hundreds of thousands” of passengers do not claim compensation even when they are inconvenienced.
Most passengers are unaware of their right
The compensation awarded to a flight passenger depends upon the distance of the flight and the amount of extra time they are made to wait for the plane to arrive. If a flight for a distance of up to 1500 kilometres, like one from London to Paris, has been delayed by more than three hours, the passenger can claim a compensation of around € 250. A flight distance of more than 3500 kilometres, like one from London to New York, suffering a delay of more than four hours can win the passenger a compensation of around € 600. According to the reports, most of the 842 million passengers that travel through the EU region are not aware of their entitlement of claiming compensation for the inconvenience.
Many who try to claim passenger compensation do not follow through
Studies conducted by a company that helps inconvenienced passengers claim compensation, has revealed that out of the few people who actually apply for it, even fewer follow through due to various reasons. The study shows that passengers do not follow through on compensation claims either because they lack the expertise required to question decisions by an airline company, give up too early or they are misguided by the airline company. Some even believe that they cannot claim compensation because they failed to store their booking details or because of the time that has passed after the incident. Although there has been a gradual rise in public awareness about compensation claims, there are a large number of passengers who do not realize that they are entitled to make a claim.
Airlines are supposed to inform passengers about compensation
Researchers who have conducted extensive studies in the field have estimated that one percent of the total number of flights were delayed over the past six years, and they have calculated that around 50 million flight passengers are due compensation. According to Article 14 of an EU regulation, airline companies are supposed to inform passengers that they can receive information about their rights to compensation in the event of a cancellation, denied boarding or long flight delays. The EU law also states that this information should be passed on to passengers at check-in itself, in the form that is “clearly visible to passengers”. According to the calculations of the statisticians, the average compensation offered to a disgruntled passenger amounted to around € 460, but only half of the cases are won by passengers.