Cancellations

    Cancellation means the non-operation of a flight which was previously planned and on which at least one place was reserved.

    The rights in case of a cancellation are as follows:

Right to Information


    Passengers are entitled to information, for this purpose the airline should provide them with a form with the rights assisting them. If such a form is not delivered, ask for it to the airline. The information contained in that form shall be similar to the following one

Right to Care


    Passengers also have the right to care while waiting for their return or alternative flight, i.e. the airline has to offer and provide:

    • Enough food and drink
    • Two phone calls or access to e-mails
    • Hotel accommodation if overnight stay is required or if an additional stay longer than the one planned by the passenger is required.
    • Transportation between the Airport and the place of accommodation

    Do not forget that if the airline does not comply with its obligation to provide the indicated care free of charge, the passenger should keep the receipts for the expenses incurred and subsequently make a complaint to the airline.

Right of Reimbursement or to Alternative Transportation


    Passengers have the right to be offered by the airline to choose from one of the following options:

    • Reimbursement of the cost of the ticket within the following 7 days (with return to the airport of origin in case the passenger is on a connection and the flight is no longer serving any purpose). Reimbursement may be made in cash, by bank transfer, cheque or travel vouchers or other services (after agreement signed by the passenger)
    • Alternative transport to your final destination as quickly as possible and under comparable conditions of transport.
    • Alternative transport at a later date suitable for the passenger. (Choosing this option, the passenger no longer has the right to care as from that moment).

    Do not forget that if the airline does not comply with its obligation to provide you with the choice between the 3 options above and you decide to purchase your own ticket, you should keep the receipt and the new boarding pass to make a complaint to the airline.

    Remind that the alternative transport offered by the airline should be the one that allows you to arrive as quickly as possible at your destination, including flights with other airlines and other possible modes of transport with comparable conditions.

Right to Compensation


    Passengers are entitled to financial compensation ranging from  250€ to 600€, depending on the distance of the flight, although these amounts can be reduced by 50% if the airline offers you alternative transport and meets a number of requirements regarding the time of arrival at the final destination.

    Flight distance

    Compensation

    50% reduction if the arrival delay of the alt. transport is less than

     Up to 1,500 km

    250 €

    2 hours

    All intra-community flights of more than 1,500 km and for all other flights between 1,500 km and 3,500 km

    400 €

     

    3 hours

    More than 3,500 km

    600 €

    4 hours

     

    The airline is not required to pay compensation in the following cases:

    • The airline informed you of the cancellation at least 14 days before the scheduled flight,
    • The airline informed you of the cancellation within two weeks and 7 days before the scheduled flight and offered you an alternative transport departing no more than 2 hours in advance and arrives at the final destination less than 4 hours late,
    • The airline informed you of the cancellation less than 7 days in advance and offered you an alternative transport departing no more than 1 hours in advance and arrives at the final destination less than 2 hours late, or
    • The airline can prove that the cancellation was caused by extraordinary circumstances. In addition, it should demonstrate that it did everything possible to avoid the cancellation.

     

Extraordinary circumstances


    According to Regulation (EC) 261/2004 the cases that can be considered as extraordinary circumstances are the following possible incidents:

    • Political instability in the country of Origin/Destination.
    • Weather conditions incompatible with the operation of the flight.
    • Security risks.
    • Unexpected deficiencies in flight safety.
    • Strikes affecting the operations of an air carrier in charge of a flight.

    ll these possible extraordinary circumstances should be duly justified in order to be considered as such.

    Successive rulings of the Court of Justice of the European Union create binding case law in Member States of the European Union. Therefore, in addition to Regulation (EC) 261/2004, these rulings should be considered when determining which incidents are to be regarded as extraordinary circumstances and which are not. Examples of these rulings include:

     

     SENTENCE

    EXTRAORDINARY CIRCUMSTANCE

    C-315/15 Pesková and Peska 

    A collision between an aircraft and a bird constitutes an extraordinary circumstance which may exempt the carrier of its obligation to compensate passengers.

    C-195/17 Krusemann y otros 

    Strikes of the airline own staff cannot be regarded as extraordinary circumstances

    C-549/07 Wallentin-Hermann 

    The only failures that can be considered as extraordinary circumstances are breakdowns due to bird impacts, FOD (Foreign Object Debris) on runways and those detected by the manufacturer and affecting the entire fleet of aircraft.

     

    The Spanish Aviation Safety and Security Agency, in the process of resolving the corresponding complaint, shall assess the acceptance or not of the existence of an extraordinary circumstance in the case studied.

     

On which flights does Regulation 261/2004 apply?


    Passenger rights are regulated by European Regulation (EC) 261/2004 . Regulation 261/2004 regulates passenger rights for cases of denied boarding, long delay, cancellation and upgrading and downgrading.

    The Regulation applies to all flights that:

    • Depart from a European Union airport as well as Iceland, Norway and Switzerland;
    • Depart from an airport in a third country and are bound to a European Union Airport as well as Iceland, Norway and Switzerland, when the airline is a Community one (Of the European Union)

    In particular, the Spanish Aviation Safety and Security Agency has jurisdiction to ensure compliance with the obligations laid down in Regulation (EC) 261/2004 on flights that:

    • Depart from an airport located in the Spanish territory and are bound to any destination;
    • Depart from an airport in a third country and are bound to an airport located in the Spanish territory, when the airline is a Community one (Of the European Union).

    The Spanish Aviation Safety and Security Agency cannot act when the airline operating the flight is not of the European Union and the flight on which the incident occurred departed from an airport outside the European Union; consequently, the infringement of passenger rights is subject to the provisions of the International Conventions or, where appropriate, to the rules of the State where the incident occurred.

    Remind that the Regulation will not apply if you travel with a ticket free of charge or with a reduced-price ticket that is not directly or indirectly available to the public. Otherwise, the Regulation will apply to tickets obtained through frequent-flyer programs offered by airlines.

    Click here to access the procedure to file a complaint with AESA due to an incident covered by Regulation 261/2004.

     

     

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