Last week, we wrote about how airlines cut costs at the expense of their customers. And how, resultantly, delays, cancellations and overbooking are as prominent as ever.
But the tricks don’t stop there. Many airlines employ a number of tactics to avoid paying lawfully owed compensation when claims are made under EC Regulation 261/2004. Here are a couple to watch out for, and our advice as claim specialists on how to avoid them.
- Offering compensatory travel vouchers
Some companies may try to immediately offer you travel vouchers as compensation. Why? Because as soon as you accept such an offer, you are no longer entitled to further monetary compensation stipulated in EC 261/2004, according to the same regulation.
- Intentionally bad replacement flights
A replacement flight offered for the next day may not get you to that important meeting on time. Of course, you could purchase a new flight with a different company entirely. However, when a passenger declines an airline’s replacement offer following a cancellation or missed connection as a result of a delay, they are similarly no longer eligible for compensation according to EC 261/2004.
With over 5 years experience in dealing with airline complaints, here are a few words of advice to passengers:
– Never accept an offer for compensation straight away without first evaluating your eligibility for a payout under EC 261/2004.
– When possible, always accept the airline’s offer for replacement. If you absolutely must make your own plans, you may still be eligible as this clause is not 100% clear. We have successfully won such cases; so don’t hesitate to ask one of our team members at [email protected].
And finally, the more evidence you have when dealing with a claim, the better. Remember: it’s the arrival delay that counts, not the departure; and there can be discrepancies between an official recorded arrival delay and the time the aircrafts doors are disarmed.
So be sure to take time-stamped photos just in case you need to prove anything. If you have experienced a delay in the past 6 years, you can easily check your eligibility online with a few simple steps.