Planning a holiday that involves a flight this summer? Here are some tips to help you if you get into difficulties. This is only a brief summary, for further advice visit www.citizensadvice.org.uk or call Citizens Advice on 0344245129.
If you are delayed airlines should provide you with assistance depending on the length of the delay, your destination and length of journey. Unless the delay was due to exceptional circumstances, you could be entitled to compensation.
If your flight is cancelled you have the legal right to either a full refund paid within seven days, a replacement flight to get you to your destination or an alternative flight. You may be entitled to compensation if your arrival is delayed by more than two hours or the cancellation was less than two weeks beforehand. Depending on the situation the airline may have to help you with food and drink, access to phone calls and emails and accommodation. Your rights are the same even if airline staff are on strike.
If your luggage is lost you may have to claim within seven days of your flight. You can claim for the cost of essentials like toiletries or for part of the cost of replacing or repairing your goods. If you have insurance that covers luggage you might be better off making an insurance claim instead as, depending on your excess, you may get more money.
If your airline collapses you are guaranteed a refund if the flight is ATOL protected. If your flight is not ATOL protected and you have paid more than £100 by credit card you could try claiming against your credit card company. Insolvency can sometimes be included on travel insurance policies so it’s worth contacting your provider to check to see if your policy covers ‘scheduled airline failure’.