How much can I claim in flight compensation?
Depending on your flight distance, you can claim between €250 and €600 in flight compensation per each passenger.
If it was up to the airlines, you wouldn’t be able to claim anything. Fortunately, it’s not up to them. Regulation (EC) 261/2004 set down the guidelines on what rights do air passengers have and how they’re to be ensured. This Regulation is what determines if you can claim compensation for your disrupted flight and how big your compensation will be. It all depends on flight range, destination and origins as well as a few special circumstances. Normally, your flight compensation can range between €250 and €600. However, there are qualifiers. To make the task of determining how large should compensation be, we have developed this flight delay compensation calculator. That way, you will know how much you stand to gain by claiming flight compensation.
General flight delay compensation cases
How to calculate flight compensation?
In general, you can calculate flight delay compensation according to the distance of the flight. The compensation ranges between €250 and €600 – the longer the flight, the bigger the compensation. It is based on the shortest possible distance between the origin airport and the destination airport. You will only be able to claim compensation if your flight was late to arrive by more than 3 hours.
However, there is an exception: if your flight took place entirely within the EU (as it’s described in the regulation), your maximum flight compensation can only be €400. You can still claim compensation for flights that take place entirely within the territory of the EU, but you will only get a maximum of €400 in compensation.
When it comes to cancelled flights, the airline may also decrease your compensation by 50%, but only if they offered you another flight that took you to your destination no more than 3 hours after your original flight would have.
Can I get compensation for a missed connecting flight?
Yes, you can get flight disruption compensation for a missed connecting flight if both (or all) the flights have a single reference number. That is, both of your tickets have to be under a single reservation and be paid for by a single bank transfer. In essence, your entire flight must be booked as a single purchase.
If the tickets have been purchased separately and you have two (or more) reference numbers, the law considers them to be separate flights with no connection to each other. That’s why it’s better, from the perspective of flight compensation, to buy the entire trip from a single airline, even if buying “the legs” separately would sometimes be cheaper.
How much can I get for a missed connection?
You can get between €250 and €600 for a missed connection, depending on the distance of your flight. Want to know how much exactly? Try our flight delay compensation calculator above – or fill a compensation claim to start the process of getting your money back now.
If you missed a connecting flight because your previous flight was late, you can claim delayed flight compensation under one condition: your connecting flights must have the same reference number. That is, the tickets have to be bought for a single reservation from the same airline and paid by a single bank transfer. That way, you will be entitled to your compensation if you reached your final destination more than 3 hours late.
However, if the tickets were purchased separately and have different reference numbers from different airlines, they are treated as separate flights and not a single connecting flights. Therefore, you would have to file separate claims for them. You would only receive compensation for flights that were late to land by more than 3 hours.
Who gets flight compensation for business trips?
When it comes to business trips, flight compensation belongs to the person who experienced the delayed flight. This is true in each and every case. It’s logical, after all – it wasn’t the company or whoever actually bought the ticket who had to wait at the airport. So if your company bought you tickets from Berlin to Zurich and you were late to land in Zurich by more than 3 hours, those €250 will be awarded to you. The same applies if you got your ticket as a gift, via lottery, and so on.
Can you get flight compensation if you booked your flight ticket through a travel agency?
The compensation is awarded to the person who experienced disruption and not the actual buyer of the ticket. If it’s your name that’s on the ticket, you get the compensation. For example, if you bought a ticket from London to Istanbul and you came to the airport to find your flight cancelled, you would be the person to be awarded the €400 in compensation (as the distance between the cities is around 2500 km). Use our flight compensation calculator to find out how much compensation your flight is due exactly.
Is flight compensation per person?
Yes. Flight compensation is awarded per person who had a ticket, showed up for the flight, and experienced stress and other immaterial damages due to the flight not happening the way it was supposed to be. Seeing how compensation runs between €250 and €600, it wouldn’t make much sense to spread it out as a pool. If that were the case, passengers on a fully loaded Boeing 737-900ER – so 220 people – that was late to land by more than 3 hours would get less than €3 in the best of circumstances. We can all agree that this would be more of an insult than compensation. That’s why each and every passenger of the flight can be awarded compensation – as long as they claim it and the disrupted flight is considered claimable.
Can children and infants get compensation?
You can claim compensation for children and infants – after all, they’re also experiencing the stresses of a disrupted flight! However, some airlines don’t pay compensation to infants under 2 years old, as they don’t have to buy a ticket and reserve a seat. Otherwise, children are entitled to the same compensation as adults.
Do note that a parent or a legal guardian has to sign the claim a child would submit on Skycop!
How long after my flight can I claim compensation?
The period during which you can claim compensation after your flight depends on the law of the country the airline is registered in. In some cases in Latvia, you will only have six months to file a claim. Meanwhile, Luxembourg has set the deadline at 10 years. However, even if your disrupted trip to or from Latvia was over 6 months ago, there still may be a way you can claim compensation. Reach out to us and we will be happy to check if you can still get your money!
How long does it take to get flight compensation?
Regulation (EC) 261/2004 does not lay down rules for how fast your compensation payment has to be. Therefore, it depends on the airline’s willingness to cooperate and comply with the law. If all goes well, the airline will confirm the compensation as soon as we submit the claim, in which case everything can be settled in a week or less. This is how it works with certain airlines that are willing to cooperate with Skycop, such as SmartLynx.
However, other airlines might act slowly or deny that the flight is worthy of compensation. That’s when civil aviation authorities and courts might be involved. In this case, it’s hard to say how long it will take. Skycop has experience in winning court battles against airlines – sometimes, it involves hundreds of claims.
What do I need to claim my flight compensation?
To pursue the flight compensation claim for the disruption you experienced, Skycop needs to know the details. The most important bits to provide are your flight number, the flight reservation number, departure/arrival airports, and the date of the flight.
Most of those are easy to find on an airline’s website. On the other hand, the flight reservation number is a unique combination of 6 characters (letters and numbers). You can usually find it on your ticket, e-ticket or a document that confirms the flight booking.
If you don’t have the ticket anymore, you can try and find the flight reservation number in your email inbox, junk folder or the trash (if you deleted the emails). Some emails – payment confirmations, travel reminders, etc. – may contain the reservation number.
However, some airlines require more documents before they start processing the claim: tickets, boarding passes, and so on.
My flight did not originate from the EU – can I still claim compensation?
When your flight originates outside the EU but lands in the EU, the deciding factor on whether you can claim compensation or not is the country where the airline is registered. Simply put, if you used an EU-registered airline, you can claim compensation. If the airline isn’t registered in the EU, you can’t.
So, if your disrupted flight from New York to Paris was operated by Air France, you could claim compensation, as Air France is an EU-registered airline. If the flight was operated by United or American, you couldn’t claim compensation, as those are not EU-registered airlines.
Does flight compensation depend on the price of my plane ticket?
Flight compensation does not depend on the price of the plane ticket. It is determined solely by the flight distance.
A notable exception here is that you can only claim up to €400 for disrupted flights that took place entirely within the EU. So if you were on a flight from Helsinki to Tenerife or from Paris to Reunion – both of them are well over 3500 km bound – you could only claim €400 in compensation. If this sounds confusing, just enter your flight details in the flight delay compensation calculator above and we’ll let you know how much you can claim.
What are my other rights when my flight is delayed, cancelled or overbooked?
One of the main things you have to do to claim compensation is to show up at the check-in for the flight. If you don’t, then it’s assumed that you would have missed the flight anyway and you won’t be awarded compensation.
Other than that, the airlines have to provide care for passengers when the delays are longer than 3 hours. The carrier should provide you with free meals and drinks, access to two free calls, let you use email or send a free fax.
When you have to wait for a flight for one or more nights, you must be granted free accommodation in a hotel, including transport to/from the airport.
In case the airline doesn’t do it, you can do it yourself, but remember to save the receipts – the airline should reimburse your expenses. However, note that airlines will only reimburse reasonable expenses, so don’t check into a five-star hotel.
Additionally, those experiencing overbookings have one of three choices:
- Recover the full price of the ticket within 7 days from the date of the incident
- Get a ticket on the next plane to your final destination, under similar terms
- Select a later flight under similar conditions.
Again, if you wait for the next flight exceeds three hours, you have the right to care.