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Ryanair's change of T&C is illegal and it needs to be addressed

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

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Budget airline Ryanair have ‘illegally’ changed their terms and conditions to exclude a passenger's right to claim compensation through a third party. 
As it stands, passengers that travel with an EU carrier are protected by regulation that stipulates that if a flight is delayed by 3 or more hours or cancelled altogether, the passengers would be entitled to claim compensation.
The changes to Ryanair’s T&C’s came into effect in the summer and the budget airline would have hoped for it to go unnoticed.
As posted on the Ryanair website, the updated terms and conditions state that ‘passengers must submit claims directly to Ryanair and allow Ryanair 28 days or such time as prescribed by applicable law (whichever is lesser) to respond directly to them before engaging third parties to claim on their behalf.’ sees this as a blatant attempt at limiting a passenger's right to claim. The right to use a third party to pursue a claim is embedded in EU regulation 261. 261 is the regulation that protects passenger rights within the European Union.
Airlines have long since protested the amounts that are paid out to passengers that are delayed or cancelled and this will be seen as an attempt to slow the process of claiming or blocking attempts to do so altogether.
The purpose of the regulation is to protect passengers and hold airlines accountable for flight delays and cancellations that could have otherwise been avoided.
This is not the first time that Ryanair have attempted to change the regulation on flight delays and cancellations. In 2015, the budget carrier was forced to go through a court case, after a change in their terms and conditions attempted to reduce the amount time a passenger would have to claim from 6 years to 2.
A court at the time ruled that the airline cannot dictate how long passengers have to claim flight delay compensation. and other passenger rights advocates will be fighting to ensure that Ryanair does not prevent anyone rightfully entitled to making a claim from doing so.