Extraordinary circumstances for flight cancellations and flight delays
Regulation (EC) No. 261/2004 protects airline passenger rights and states that travellers are entitled to compensation in the following scenarios:
A flight delayed by three or more hours
A cancelled flight
An overbooked flight to which a passenger is denied boarding
However, there are certain exceptions under which compensation is not due. These so called extraordinary circumstances imply that airlines cannot always be held accountable, for instance when a situation is beyond their control. These are particular situations, for example adverse weather conditions or strikes, that the airline could not have anticipated. Because of that, carriers can’t be held liable for having to delay or cancel their flight as a consequence of such an event, since these are out of their direct control and influence.
If your flight was delayed or cancelled, you are always warranted adequate assistance from the airline. However, if your flight was affected by an extraordinary circumstance, unfortunately, you’re not entitled to compensation. This does not mean that you should not be offered a solution to minimise the problematic ramifications of these incidents. So always contact the airline if you have been left stranded at an airport.
Extraordinary circumstances according to EU Regulation EC 261/2004
The following situations are considered extraordinary by the European regulation and will excuse the airline from paying compensation:
Bad weather, for example: thunderstorms, heavy rain, thick fog, snow and high gusts of wind
An air sector strike: think along the lines of the country’s air traffic control personnel going on strike; another possibility is the airport’s baggage handlers walking out
Political circumstances: terror attacks, political unrest or security risks can all be seen as examples of such situations
Natural disasters: a volcanic eruption or a hurricane wold qualify as an extraordinary circumstance
Bird strike; when there’s a collision between the aircraft and a bird or other foreign object
An unruly or ill passenger
Other options: delays caused by the airport staff (long queues during security checks)
Can I claim compensation even if my flight delay or cancellation was caused by an extraordinary circumstance?
In theory, any extraordinary circumstance should exonerate the airline from paying compensation to its passengers. However, airlines overuse this argument very often just to avoid paying out. The burden of proof lies with the airline, therefore you should not give easily if the carrier has already cited an extraordinary circumstance as the reason for your disruption.
Arguments that airlines misuse as an extraordinary circumstance
Unfortunately, airlines often refer to extraordinary circumstances in order to scare off passengers. However, every situation is different and the decision as to whether or not one is entitled to compensation is not always black and white. Our team of experts is trained to analyse each situation and offer tailor-made advice. Flight-Delayed.co.uk is also able to corroborate the conditions in which a flight was operated, even if the airline has argued that the occurrence of an extraordinary circumstance happened on a previous leg of the aircraft’s itinerary.
Some of the most common overuses of the “extraordinary circumstance” argument are: technical and operational issues, bad weather conditions on a previous flight, air traffic control restrictions on previous flights, overbookings and system failures. As mentioned previously, every case is different and sometimes the airlines might be right. However, it is their obligation to prove the occurrence of an extraordinary circumstance.
Was your claim already rejected? You can still submit your claim with Flight-Delayed.co.uk. We will review the airlines answer and determine if we can proceed legally or if, in fact, an extraordinary circumstance occurred. We will take over the correspondence with the airline and, if needed, we will initiate legal proceedings. All of this is covered by our 25% win fee that you will only have to pay if we succeed with claiming your compensation. Don’t wait any longer, exercise your rights!
Very fast and professional, got my claim just over a month but then again the airline did tell us we can claim and gave us leaflets.
Siu Wan Lee
Tuesday 26 July 2016
Really simple to use, and didn't take very long for my claim to be processed.
Alice C Farmer
Thursday 21 July 2016
I wasn't very optimistic about using this service, but the from the outset the communication was excellent and the instructions were clear. The claim is all handled via email and the online service portal. The team are very quick to answer any questions you have while the airline is assessing your claim. In my case, I was awarded 225 Euros compensation, better than nothing and so glad I took the time and effort to get this money back! Thank you Flight-Delayed for your fantastic service.
Wednesday 20 July 2016
Very good service claiming a compensate after a long delay from airline and we got the out compensate. Thank you very much ...
Wednesday 13 July 2016
Successful claim against Jet 2 ! Took a while (4yrs) but glad to finally won !!
Friday 17 June 2016
This company provide a very fast and efficient service with no fuss and they took a fair amount of commission with no extra hidden charges. Extremely pleased with them.
Tuesday 7 June 2016
i have had great help with the flight delayed trip thankyou very much to u and team
Friday 3 June 2016
Very good Service for claming Money from Airline companies if you had a Problem like more than 3hrs delay, cancellations without reason.
For my case, Airline rejected my Claim via customer Service but after i used this site it took only 4 weeks from Claim to confirmation for compensation.
it's very easy to fill out the form to Claim and they answer/help right away.
you should try with this even though Airline already refused to pay you with several reason.
Monday 30 May 2016
It's taken 12 months to extract compensation from Ryanair, purely down to the pathetic customer service on the part of the Irish Airline. Will never use them again as they use every tactic in the book not to pay out, and even though they have now settled conversation rate 1.40, as opposed to commercial rate of 1,31.
Many thanks to Flight-Delayed for their excellent support. Well worth 25% cut to get justice done. Highly recommended.
Friday 27 May 2016
Just over three hours delay last year to Crete contacted this company, they sorted the claim and with in a few weeks Monet transferred into my account. fantastic service. Thank you
Janet Okorn Beech
Thursday 26 May 2016
Didn't expect result But cash son it's way to.me. Thank you. Great company
Tuesday 24 May 2016
What an excellent service , after trying for almost a year to claim compensation for a 5 hour delay in which we were kept inside the cabin with nothing to eat or drink i contacted this company and within 6 weeks I have recieved full compensation minus their 25% which I am happy to pay as I had given up. thanks again to the staff for all your communication and work to complete this. cannot recommend you enough
Monday 23 May 2016
Just got our cempensation thanks to the team at flight delay very easy process, kept informed as to how the claim was going
Wednesday 18 May 2016
Very good service to use for claiming money from the airline companies due to a long delays or cancellations for no reason or no explanation! I had no idea it is even possible, but I filled their forms and did not need to pay a thing for it. They claimed 800 euros for 2 passengers and all they took was their commission fee from the claimed price for their work which is the way it should be. They managed to get the money within a month or so.
Thursday 12 May 2016
My plane was delayed for over seven hours on a UK flight from Newquay to Manchester. I contacted Flight Delay and they quickly completed my claim without any fuss.
I have received £195.62 minus a 25% charge, I actually received £145.07.
All this took approx 5 weeks from beginning of claim to having payment into bank.
HIGHLY RECOMMEND and thank you flight-delayed
Tuesday 10 May 2016
Ryanair left us delayed at Knock Airport for over 4 hours. Not just inconvenient but annoyingly cost us an extra £23 airport parking which we could not reclaim. Although not a "serial complainer", saw the Flight Delayed Website and thought "why not?". So glad I did. Efficient and professional organisation that made it an easy process resulting in €300 for us and €100 for them and a "heads up" for Ryanair. Perfect.
Monday 9 May 2016
What a nice surprise, cheque for delayed flight dropped through the letterbox. Asked flight delayed to do the work for me and a few emails and a few months later I received the cheque for over £600. Minus their 25% which I do not begrudge as if they hadn't done the work for me I would never have got anything. Also thanks to Martin Lewis for making me aware I could claim. Thanks delayed flights I will certainly recommend you.
Saturday 7 May 2016
Very helpful, I got a lot back. I also hope anybody who ever got flight delayed, don't lose your right! It didn't take me a lot of effort to submit the materials, they can help you.
Wednesday 4 May 2016
Great service, very easy process and friendly team to deal with - answered questions quickly and through the online tool I was able to track the progress of our claim.
Everything has been handled really well and I would happily recommend the Flight-Delayed team to help you with your claim.
Tuesday 19 April 2016
My plane was over three hours late getting back to Manchester due to delays. I contacted Flight Delay and they got me £199 (minus 25% for their fee) for the delay. It took less than an hours work from me to fill out a form and give them my power of attorney. Six weeks later it was all sorted. Highly recommended!
Tuesday 12 April 2016
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