If your flight is delayed for more than 3 hours then you would be entitled to the EU regulated flight delay compensation sums of up to €600 per passenger but what about your expenses?
An airline is required to look after passengers who have suffered a flight delay of 3 hours or more. This means feeding them and providing drinks plus, if the delay is overnight, they must provide hotel accommodation. What if you incur hotel or other expenses yourself? Well, strangely, the flight delay compensation rules state that expenses must be deducted from any flight delay compensation that you are paid. It is only if your expenses exceed the flight delay compensation that the airline is then required to pay them.
Most airlines will however refund small expenses but we do not claim them as part of your flight delay compensation claim. It is best to allow airlines to pay for hotels etc. direct in order to avoid you having to try to get any money back. You should also contact your travel insurance company who may pay hotel bills or additional travel costs.
The thought behind this is that any flight delay compensation you get is not just to compensate you for your inconvenience or shortened holiday, it is also to repay you any expenses you have incurred. In most cases the expenses will be much less than the flight delay compensation so you should have plenty spare to make up for the stress and lost holiday you have experienced.
One word of caution though. If you do incur expenses and want to try to recover them from the airline, they must be reasonable. You cannot check your family into the Ritz Hotel overnight and expect to get the money back. You should be minimising your loses so unfortunately, even if you do frequently stay at The Ritz, you may have to make do with the Holiday Inn for one night.
If you’ve had a problem with a delayed flight and you think you may be entitled to flight delay compensation, why not try putting your flight details into our compensation calculator. It only takes a minute and you may be entitled to compensation of up to €600.