Flying Home For Christmas? The Problems With Festive Travel


Christmas is a time to get together with family to celebrate – often, you could end up travelling many miles to make it home for the special day. And, when you're relying on airlines to get you from point A to point B, if they don't deliver, it can be the difference between "Merry Christmas!" and a "Bah Humbug!"

Christmas at the Airport

When Can I Claim?

If you are making your way home this Christmas and your flight is delayed by more than three hours, or even worse, if it's cancelled – you are entitled to claim up to £420 in compensation.

Following a decision by the European Court of Justice in 2012, it was decided that passengers could claim compensation for long delays – though it has not been without criticism from airline companies. Many have tried to stop individuals from claiming for flights that are longer than 2 years ago – though this has been ruled against consistently by the courts.

In theory, claiming for delayed or cancelled flights is a relatively straightforward process that you can do yourself, without the need for a lawyer, or for a court date.

How Do I Make A Claim?

Making a claim is really simple; Resolver is an online tool that makes easy (and free!) work of your claim.

All you need to do is follow the steps on screen to get your flight delay or cancellation complaint started.

What's The Catch?

Generally, claiming for delays should be straightforward, but there are a few things to remember before you begin:

  • It's only for EU-regulated flights
  • Claiming can be done as far back as 2005, but before 2009 it is more difficult; in Scotland you can only go back 5 years in total
  • Only things within the airline's control (grounding due to overbooking, staffing issues, or wear and tear to the plane) are claimable
  • Claims are only for late arrival, not departures.
  • Each person can claim individually; that's up to £420 per person
  • Compensation is always paid in Euros, not Pound Sterling.

Remember: if you make a claim and the airline does not want to accept liability, do not be put off – you can quite easily take your case to the relevant regulatory body.

What If My Claim Is More Complicated?

In the very first instance, you should make the claim for compensation yourself. If your case is straightforward, your claim will be too.

It's unlikely that you'll end up in court with your claim, but if things do start to get more complex, it can be a good idea to get legal advice from an expert.

At Simpson Millar, our expert solicitors have the experience to help you make your claim if you need it. With no hidden charges, and a 'No Win No Fee' basis, you can be assured that we only have your best interests in mind.

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