Holiday claims specialist outlines EU’s ‘Denied Boarding’ Regulation

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Holiday claims specialist outlines EU’s ‘Denied Boarding’ Regulation

1st September 2011

As thousands of British travellers remain stranded in the United States due to Hurricane Irene, a travel expert has highlighted the importance of holidaymakers knowing their compensation entitlements in the event they are denied boarding or their flight is cancelled or delayed.

Katherine Allen, a partner at Fentons Solicitors LLP, said: “The EU’s ‘Denied Boarding’ Regulation, EC261/2004 sets out the entitlements of passengers when a flight they intend to travel on is delayed or cancelled, or when they are denied boarding due to overbooking. When events such as Hurricane Irene lead to delays and cancellations, it is important passengers are aware of what exactly they can expect from their airlines.”

The EU’s ‘Denied Boarding’ Regulation only applies to passengers departing from an EU member state, or from a third country to an airport within the EU if the flight is operated by a carrier with a valid operating licence granted by a Member State. In the event of denied boarding, passengers are either entitled to a replacement flight at the earliest opportunity or a full refund of the cost of their ticket within seven days. Similar assistance and/or compensation may be payable in the event that a flight is cancelled.

“Airlines that are caught by the Regulation have a duty of care towards their passengers in the event of delays,” said Katherine. “If passengers choose to receive a replacement flight, their airline is legally obliged to provide free-of-charge refreshments, meals and hotel accommodation proportionate to the delay, together with transfers to and from the airport as well as two free telephone calls, fax messages, or emails. However, if passengers decide to book any necessary accommodation themselves through a third party, they may not be able to claim a refund as, in the majority of cases, airlines will use their own discounted third party hotel providers in such situations.

“Passengers who have booked package holidays where the flight is cancelled may be entitled to additional compensation/assistance over and above that payable under the Regulation depending upon the terms and conditions that apply to their holiday. Such passengers should contact their tour operator,” added Katherine.

How can Fentons help?

Fentons has a specialist department experienced in handling claims relating to holiday accidents.

If you think that you have a case or require further information, contact Fentons on 0800 019 1297 or fill in the online claims questionnaire.