Whilst EU Regulation 261/2004 states that you cannot claim financial compensation for a long flight delay due to an extraordinary circumstance (e.g. air traffic control strikes, terrorism, volcanic ash cloud), the airline is still obliged to offer its passengers care and assistance while they wait for a replacement flight.
We take a look in more detail below.
Article 9 of EC261/2004 states the airline has a duty of care to its passengers even where they do not have the right to claim for monetary compensation because the delay was caused by an extraordinary circumstance.
You have the right to receive the following care and assistance from your airline:
- Food and drink in reasonable relation to waiting time
- Free hotel accommodation when a stay of one night or more is necessary
- Free transport between the airport and the hotel
- Two free telephone calls, emails, telex or fax messages
If you have been delayed or had your flight cancelled due to extraordinary circumstances but the airline has failed to meet its obligations to provide care and assistance then you may have found yourself out of pocket – paying for hotel accommodation for example.
If you wish to claim these expenses back from the airline then you may find it useful to download and send off our template letter of claim.
For older versions of Word then please use this file.