News & Media

Overbooking, DBCs and EU261

Tips and Advice
10 Sep 2019

Sometimes the inevitable happens and flights get cancelled or worse we are denied boarding.
Airlines overbook flights as they need to ensure that flight loads are high to operate profitably but what to do when we get turned back at the counter?

Here is what we recommend: Check in online as early as possible, be at the airport on time and keep checking your flight status on the airlines app or online. If you are a frequent flier make sure we know your details so we can transfer your number/s into your booking. If your flight gets cancelled check with us, most likely we will already have you rebooked or can provide you with a list of alternatives. If you are at the airport and either being denied boarding or their airline suddenly decides to cancel your flight speak with the next available airlines representative and call us, we will be at your side. For all those cases where the EU compensation scheme (EU261)  applies – flights to and from EU airports and on EU airlines – here is a short summery of what you are entitled to:


Denied Boarding

The airline must first look for volunteers and offer reimbursement or alternative travel arrangements. Only then can they proceed to deny boarding but have to offer compensation and assistance


Flight Delay

If the airline is at fault and you will arrive at your destination more than three hours later than the original scheduled arrival time you are entitled to compensation between EUR250 and EUR600 depending on the length of your flight and the delay. If you have been offered to be rerouted and to arrive within two to four hours of the original scheduled arrival time your compensation may be reduced by 50%. If your delay is at least 5 hours you are entitled to choose between being rerouted or being reimbursed.

If your flight is cancelled you are entitled to EUR250 for flights up to 1500km, EUR400 for longer flights within the EU or flights up to 3500km and EUR600 for all longhaul flights. Again the compensation is reduced by 50% if you were given the option to be rerouted and arrive within two hours (short haul), three hours (medium haul) and four hours (long haul) .

It is important to know that you can only be paid in travel vouchers if you agree to it, otherwise payment has to be in cash, cheque or bank transfer. Equally important is that the above does not only apply to airport cancellations but for all cancellations up to two weeks before departure.

If the flight is cancelled or delayed contact the airline directly and advise them that you will claim compensation. If your claim does not get resolved contact the Civil Aviation Authority. If they still refuse seek legal advice, you have up to six years from when your flight was delayed to make a claim.

Hopefully it will never get to it but if it does let us know and we will work the process with you!

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