What can I do if my flight has been delayed or cancelled?

Under the EC regulation 261/2004, if your flight has been delayed or cancelled you can make a claim for compensation or a refund, depending on the case. There are two common criteria for both cancellation and delays:

  1. For EU-regulated flights only, which means either the flight departed from an EU airport, regardless the airline, or an EU airline landed at an EU airport (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland are included). If it wasn’t an EU-regulated flight, you won’t be covered by the EU flight delay compensation scheme, but there are other ways.
  2. In theory, you can make a claim for past delays stretching back as far as February 2005, but in practice, it’s extremely unlikely you’ll be able to go back further than 2012.

Flight delay compensation:

  • You’re only entitled to the compensation if the delay was something within the airline’s control.

These include: crew or pilot late; flight cancelled because under-booking; over-booking; downgrading (removed from a higher class of seat); strikes by airline staff; technical problems caused by something routine, such as component failure and general wear and tear.

Some of the scenarios which are NOT the airline’s fault are: bad weather, industrial action by air traffic controllers, airport staff and ground handlers; political problems; security issues; or technical problems caused by an extraordinary event.

If you don’t meet the conditions of EU regulation 261/2004 as outlined in the points above, you can still try to claim for some compensation. For example, if you’re not sure whether you meet the conditions (possibly because the airline haven’t told you the reason for the delay), or for example if you don’t fulfil the conditions, but you experienced poor service.

  • Compensation for delays is only due on flight arriving over 3 hours or more late. The length of the delay determines the amount of money you could get. It’s important to highlight that it’s not about when you leave the airport but about when you arrive to your destination. (see table)



For specific cases, such as missing a connecting flight, your flight being diverted to a different airport or the plane arriving late from its previous flight, check the airlines’ website.

Flight cancellation compensation:

  • When a flight is cancelled you have the right to choose between either a refund for the flight that was cancelled or an alternative flight to your destination. This applies regardless the cause of the cancellation and the time in advance you were told about the cancellation.

Visit the airlines’ website if you want to know what happens if you get stuck at the airport or if you miss a connecting flight because of a cancellation.

  • For compensation, it must have been the airline’s fault, and it must have cancelled the flight within two weeks from departure. Even if you go for a refund of your original ticket, rather than taking an alternative flight, you can claim compensation based on the timings of the alternative flight offered. How much you can get depends on the flight delay and distance.

Note: All the information for this article has been taken from the website Money Saving Expert. For a deep understanding and further questions, you can visit the original article.

To see what Fit 2 Trip’s policies cover regarding this issue, go to pages 21 (Travel delay) and 23 (Missed departure/ missed connection) of Fit 2 Trip’s terms and conditions’ policy.