In some cases, as per EU Regulation 261/2004, travellers could be eligible for missed connection flight compensation and receive up to €600 as a refund for their troubles. This article will help you find out the necessary steps for claiming compensation and give you some advice on what to do in case of a missed connection.
Right to compensation for a missed flight connection
First and foremost, it is important to note that the reasons for missing your connecting flight can make a world of difference. If it’s the airline’s fault, you could be entitled to compensation of up to €600, an alternate flight and a refund for your food and drinks for the duration of your wait.
In case you missed your connection due to inclement weather, your carrier is also obliged to help you find an alternate flight as soon as possible but would not be required to pay compensation for the missed connection.
Unfortunately, if something under your control caused you to miss your flight, unless the airline representatives are especially nice, you would more or less be on your own.
Reserve your tickets with the same airline and on the same booking
According to EU law, it’s also important to book your flights with the same airline, if possible, and to have them on the same booking. If you don’t have all your flights under the same reservation number, the airline’s responsibility towards you would end once they take you to your in-between destination.
If for any reason it’s not possible to fly with the same airline, we would recommend finding flights which are operated by carriers within the same alliance. Alliances often have their dedicated desks at airports and would help you find alternate flights more easily.
Did you miss your flight because of your airline?
According to your passenger rights as defined by EC261, you may have the right to compensation of up to €600 for any flight cancellations or delays which prevent you from boarding your connection.
There are a few criteria that need to be met to be eligible for compensation for your missed connection.
- The delay or cancellation of your flight must have resulted in your arrival at your final destination at least 3 hours after the original arrival time
Therefore, we strongly recommend that you make a note of your actual arrival time at your final destination.
- In the case of a cancellation, you were informed about the cancellation less than 14 days prior to your flight
- Your flights were booked under the same booking reference
- The airline is responsible for the flight disruption
In other words, you did not miss your connecting flight due to bad weather conditions, airport strikes or other extraordinary circumstances. Technical issues, however, are not considered extraordinary circumstances as they are within the airline’s responsibility to prevent. In this case, you may still be eligible for compensation.
- You flew with an EU airline or the flight departed from an EU airport
How much compensation can I claim?
The compensation amount depends on the total distance of your journey:
- less than 1,500 km - €250;
- between 1,500 and 3,500 km - €400;
- over 3,500 km - €600.
Moreover, if you miss your connection, the amount of compensation will be calculated, based on the total length of your journey, not only for the disrupted leg.
What if my connecting flight is delayed: SkyRefund will help you claim compensation
If you are entitled to compensation, our experienced aviation law experts can help you receive your payment. Once you have submitted your flight information, we will take every legal measure to ensure that you receive what is rightfully yours—even take the airline to court if necessary.
What’s more, the whole process would be completely risk-free for you. We would only earn our fee once the airline has sent you your compensation: “No Win—No Fee”.
Right to Care
If your inbound flight was delayed or cancelled and caused you to miss your flight, the airline is required to provide you with vouchers for food and drinks for the entire duration of your airport stay. According to EC261, your carrier must provide you with:
- Food and refreshments;
- Hotel accommodation in case you need to stay at your transitional destination overnight;
- Transportation to the hotel accommodation;
An alternate flight or reimbursement for the cost of your journey.
What happens if the airline is not responsible for my missed flight?
Sometimes passengers miss their connection because the airport is too big for them to reach the departure gate on time. Unfortunately, in this case, the airline is not required to assist in finding an alternate flight, nor to cover any expenses at the airport or accommodation. That is why we advise you to contact the airline immediately and attempt to find the earliest possible flight.
In addition, ask your airline representative about retrieving your baggage, you might need it if you have to spend the night at a hotel.
Missing your connecting flight could bring you a lot of trouble but we hope that these simple tips will spare you some stress. Of course, missing a connection is sometimes unavoidable, but in some situations you would be eligible for missed connection compensation that you can claim in just a few clicks!
Looking for more air travel advice? Check out our blog posts on lost luggage and the right to food and drinks in case of a flight delay or cancellation!
You can learn more about SkyRefund's work by checking out a user's testimonial.