A cancelled flight, or flight cancellation, occurs when an airline decides not to operate a scheduled flight, leading to travel disruptions for passengers. Several factors can cause flight cancellations, from technical issues to bad weather conditions, air traffic congestion, operational limitations, or unexpected events such as strikes or security concerns. Additionally, airlines can also cancel flights due to insufficient bookings, financial issues, or reorganisation in their flight schedules.
When a flight is cancelled, passengers are entitled to a ticket refund or a rebooking. However, if the airline is responsible for the disruption, passengers can have the right to flight cancellation compensation.
In 2004, the European Parliament and European Commission introduced Regulation (EC) No. 261/2004, commonly known as EU261 law or Flight Compensation Regulation. This essential document ensures that passengers within the EU are entitled to compensation and a refund in case of a cancelled or delayed flight. If you find yourself facing flight disruptions such as a delayed or cancelled flight, we help you with your EU261 claim to get your flight compensation.
After Brexit, the Regulation was adopted into British law as ‘The Air Passenger Rights and Air Travel Organisers’ Licensing (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019’. While the name isn’t too catchy, what’s important is that this document guarantees British citizens the same air passenger rights as they have previously enjoyed while the United Kingdom had been part of the EU. At Flight-Delayed.co.uk we know everything about how to claim EU261 compensation in the UK and can assist you throughout the all process!
The most important criterion is the time when the airline announced the flight cancellation. If the cancellation was announced fewer than 14 days prior to the original departure date, you are likely eligible for compensation.
The other two criteria are:
- The reason for the cancellation — in order for the passenger to be eligible for compensation, the cancellation must be the fault of the airline itself.
=> See the Extraordinary Circumstances part of this article to learn more about situations where the airline does not have to issue compensation.
- Details of the alternative flight offered by the airline — see table below.
The British and EU regulations apply to most flights travelling to or from the United Kingdom and the European Union. The only major exception would be when flying to the UK/EU with a non-UK/non-EU airline — for example, flying from the United States with a US-based airline like United or American Airlines.
See the table below for details.
For all flights of fewer than 1,500 km, the compensation is £220.
For all flights between 1,500 and 3,500 km, the compensation is £350.
For all flights of over 1,500 kilometres within the EU, the compensation is also £350.
For all flights of over 3,500 kilometres outside of the EU, the compensation is £520 — however, if your flight was delayed by fewer than 4 hours, the total amount might be reduced by 50%.
Was your flight cancelled less than 14 days before departure and the airline was responsible? Good news! You are entitled to flight cancellation compensation.
Since 2010, Flight-Delayed.co.uk has been dedicated to assisting passengers in claiming their rightful flight compensation from airlines. Working on a "no win, no fee" basis, we ensure a risk-free experience for you. With a success rate of 98% in court, we stand as your ideal partner in securing flight cancellation compensation. Trust us to make the process smooth and hassle-free!
In the event of a cancelled flight, we can also help you get a ticket refund! You can claim a refund if your flight was cancelled, and you decided not to take any alternative flight offered by the airline. If you were not offered an alternative flight at all, you can, of course, also claim a refund.
Having a last minute flight cancellation is nothing but fun, especially when it happens when you are already at the airport. Our experts at Flight-Delayed.co.uk came up with a step-by-step guide to help you in the event of a last minute flight cancellation.
- Gather all the information you can: When did the cancellation happen? Why was the flight cancelled? Was the airline responsible for the cancellation? Collect all relevant details about your flight, including your booking reference, flight number, and the reason given for the cancellation.
- Know your rights: In the event of a flight cancellation you have rights and more than compensation and ticket refund, you can ask the airline to provide you with special assistance, also referred to as "right to care". This includes for instance refreshments, a place to stay for the night, or transportation. You can get it by going to the airline's help desk at the airport.
- Claim your compensation: Depending on the circumstances of your flight cancellation, you could be entitled to flight compensation and a ticket refund. You can easily check your eligibility directly from your phone at the airport with our Claim Calculator, it is completely free and will help you start your cancellation compensation claim. Remember, the sooner you claim, the higher the chances to get your money as soon as possible!
We don’t recommend it. The main reasons for that are:
When you accept a voucher, you have to use the same airline in the future, even if you had a bad experience with it.
Your money gets frozen. Even if you don’t want to fly anytime soon, you have to do so if you don’t want to completely lose your money.
Airline voucher expiration dates can be problematic — you will need to plan your next trip fast.
If the airline goes bankrupt, you’ll likely lose your money — the law doesn’t guarantee an option to exchange the voucher for a refund.
There are certain situations where the airline can rightfully deny compensation for a cancelled or delayed flight. Among these extraordinary circumstances are:
Bad weather, for example thick fog, heavy rain, or thunderstorms.
A strike, most often specifically within the aviation industry.
However, a strike of the airline's crew is not considered an extraordinary circumstance!
Political circumstances, such as a terrorist attack or general security risk due to political unrest.
Natural disasters, including volcanic eruptions and hurricanes.
A collision between the aircraft and birds or other foreign objects.
An ill or unruly passenger.
Flight delays caused by the airport staff, such as extraordinarily long queues to security checks.
Here are a summary of the most Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about your rights and the claim process in the event of a cancelled flight.
It sometimes happens that when a flight is suddenly cancelled, the passenger has to incur unexpected expenses. This includes hotel expenses, restaurant meals, spendings on transportation (taxis, car rentals), and more.
Thankfully, in many cases, we are able to help you get your money back from the airline. Claim with Flight-Delayed.co.uk today and simply upload all relevant receipts and invoices via our smart online system. We’ll take care of it from there.
=> Claim your money back
Are you flying to or from the UK? Then you have up to 6 years to submit your claim. Scotland is the exception — you have 5 years to claim there.
If your itinerary does not include the UK (for example, you are flying between EU countries), this depends on the laws in each country. Use our free Claim Calculator to find if you are still eligible for cancelled flight compensation and/or a refund.
Many of the passengers we help find money on their accounts within a few weeks or months after submitting their claim.
In some situations, however, such as when the airline is unresponsive and/or the claim has to go to court, this wait time might get extended. Rest assured, though, that if you claim with Flight-Delayed.co.uk, we’ll take the stress off your shoulders — we’ll keep you posted on any major updates regarding your claim, be there to answer any questions, and represent you in court when needed.
First, double-check your eligibility using our free, no-obligation Claim Calculator.
Afterwards, you can either try to claim compensation and refund by yourself or let us do the job for you. Thanks to over a decade of experience in helping air passengers, we know all the ins and outs of the legal process and have won 98% of court cases against the airlines. We take care of virtually everything for you, you just need to share with us all the necessary information via our smart online system — it will only take a couple of minutes!
Why claim with Flight-Delayed.co.uk?
1m passengers helped
9 legal teams in 9 countries
98% of court cases won
If you wish to learn more about our fees, please visit our Price List page.
Otherwise, if you are ready to claim, start the process right away — you can do it straight from your phone or your computer!