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Passenger Airline Rights
Your Rights As An Airline Passenger
The vast majority of clients staying in one of our rental villas in Playa Blanca choose to book
their own flights direct.
Usually, their journeys are problem free, however in the event of any delay or cancellation it is
important to be aware of your rights and where applicable your entitlement to compensation
New EU Passenger Rights
Recent changes to consumer rights within Europe mean that as a passenger you now have the right to compensation if you experience a flight cancellation, overbooking or a long delay. These conditions apply to any flights starting from a European airport on either a European or other airline. This even includes flights that are part of a holiday package as well as charter flights.
If your flight is cancelled and you have been notified at least two weeks before you were due to fly, you are entitled to compensation.
If the flight is cancelled within the two weeks before you were due to fly and an alternative flight to your destination is offered to you, you are not entitled to compensation – even if the route by which you get there is different from that originally purchased. If however, the airline is unable to take you to your destination you are entitled to compensation.
In the unlikely event that a flight is cancelled due to a security threat, the airline does not necessarily have to pay compensation to passengers.
In the event that the airline has overbooked the flight and cannot provide you with a seat, it will ask passengers to voluntarily give up their places for an agreed amount of compensation. Should you still be denied the opportunity to board the flight you have booked because of overbooking, you are entitled to compensation as well. The amount of compensation you will receive is determined by the distance of the flight.
Delayed flights will not automatically result in a compensation payment. However, the airline should provide a range of services, depending on the severity of the delay.
For short haul flights, a delay of over two hours should trigger the following services:
• Food and drink in proportion to the time waited
• Hotel accommodation if the delay is overnight
• Transport to the accommodation from the airport in the event of an overnight stay
• Two phone calls, faxes, emails for free
For longer flights, a delay of four hours is necessary before the airline is obliged to provide these.
For passengers who find that their flight has been downgraded, in other words, changed from first or business class to economy, they are also entitled to compensation. The amount offered in compensation should be between 30 and 75 percent of the ticket value and will also depend on the length of the flight.
Compensation is paid according the distance the flight would have travelled and is as follows:
250 Euros for any flight that is up to 1,500 kilometres
400 Euros for any flight within the European Community of over 1,500 kilometres and for flights to other destinations between 1,500 and 3,500 kilometres distance.
Flights from the UK or Eire to Lanzarote fall into this category
600 Euros for all other flights
Compensation payment may be made in a number of ways – either in cash, to a nominated bank account, by cheque or bank transfer. Travel vouchers or other services may only be used as compensation if the passenger agrees to accept these.
How to Make a Complaint
If you think you are entitled to compensation for an overbooking, excessive delay or flight cancellation, your first port of call is to contact the airline you bought the ticket with.
If for any reason, you feel that you have not had your complaint dealt with effectively, you can also contact the following:
NIDirect Government Services - http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/making-a-complaint-about-air-services
European Consumer Centre - http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/ecc/contact_en.htm
The British Air Transport Association - http://www.bata.uk.com/consumer-issues/#complaints