Can you get compensation for your last plane problem?

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Your question:

Belfast Airport : flight delays, cancellations, claim and compensation

Our answer:

Like all large industries, commercial aviation is never without its annual share of regular setbacks and incidents. Fortunately, not only can travellers legally file claims for compensation against their losses and inconvenience during a troubled journey, in some cases indemnification claims can amount to a €600 maximum. Most often, such causes for these claims are due to flight cancellations and/or delays caused directly by the airline company’s actions.


These can range from lost luggage to general inconveniences caused by flight delays, and even financial and property damages for the average commuter stemming from flight cancellations.


Belfast hosts an international air hub of considerable size that services millions of people per year. As such, like any major airport around the world, flight delays and cancellations are not only inevitable but can be frequent during certain times of the year or during particularly bothersome years in general.


Because fight cancellations or delays can happen to you just as much as any person, it is absolutely critical to be fully aware of your rights as a traveller within the European Union. Knowing your rights and protections ensures maximum reimbursement for any losses or inconveniences caused to you by the airline’s direct actions and errors. When an airline, it is always a big deal for one party or another, hence one of the cornerstones of why such legislation was enacted.


Furthermore, via the Civil Aviation Authority of the UK, flights within the United Kingdom, the EU, and from the EU to many international destinations are covered by legislation to ensure maximised traveller protection.


During these irregular and oftentimes extreme situations, these policies absolutely ensure that you are eligible to file a complaint with the airline to reimburse you for any financial and property loss incurred by the airline’s action.


As you can imagine, however, whilst it varies from airline to airline, the claims process is often a difficult and non-straightforward process. It is almost always in an airline’s best profitable interest, regardless of its financial performance being good or bad, to render claims a difficult and discouraging process to initiate and carry out to ensure your refund. In some cases, airlines have even been taken to court to fully resolve a customer’s refund.


The legislation mandates that you have up to six years from the day of occurrence of your damages to file your complaint, though immediate action as soon as possible after your flight delay or cancellation affects you most often yields the best result for your compensation claim. The more recent, clear, and concise your claim is, the easier a time you will have in dealing with the airline that caused your losses.


This is where Idemniflight comes in! With our experienced team, we can provide you with expert advice and guidance in structuring and submitting your indemnification claims to the airline, exercising your rights as an airline traveller, and securing the refund you deserve with swift success!


Getting Compensation


If during the course of your passing through or from Belfast Airport, the airline you were riding with directly caused significant inconvenience, unexpected expenses, and/or financial and property loss, you are entitled by law to submit a claim for a refund. Here at Idemniflight, we are fully equipped to assist you in submitting your reimbursement claim for the highest probability of success and minimal hassle.


Since 2004, EC Regulation 261 stipulates that formal complaints and claims for reimbursement can be filed with the offending airline company in the event of actions by the said company directly causing unforeseen expenses, inconvenience and potential property loss or damages to you.  This is put in place as one route of protection and as an additional supplement to other forms of protection such as travel insurance.


Most often, claims for compensation are submitted to airlines stemming from alternative flight and lodging bookings at the expense of the traveller in an attempt to stay on their schedule when the airline’s mistake causes a cancellation or flight delay.


Compensation for Flight Delays


European Union regulations do not establish a fixed, singular rate for compensation. Instead, the amounts varying depending on different aspects of your situation. The biggest overriding factor is the maximum distance of the flight and whether or not they were within the EU, or inbound/outbound from the EU. While Belfast’s airport primarily services the EU itself, thanks to the flexibility of legislation, travellers of both between EU nation flights and EU-international flights are eligible for compensation from their airline in the event of a valid incident causing significant inconvenience and financial damages.


With that good news in mind, flights no greater than 1,500 kilometres are capable of landing successful refund claimants up to €250. If your cancelled flight or delay is 1,500km and was between two EU member nations only with no non-EU destinations, that maximum compensation can jump to a maximum refund of €400.


Conversely, an important additional fact of note is that the legislation also mandates that flights with non-EU destinations of 3,500km or greater are eligible for a maximum reimbursement ceiling of €600 if the flight cancellation or delay lasts longer than four hours.


With all the nuances of policy and the different rates for different flight distances, it can get pretty overwhelming at times for many people. Always remember that no question is ever a stupid question! Whenever in doubt or confused about anything, our team has your back to guide you through each step from beginning to completion.


Both EU and non-EU travellers are entitled for reimbursement when airlines cause financial and property losses. We at Idemniflight are here to help with all your claim needs, and that includes all those who pass through Belfast!


When to Claim Compensation?


A lot of travellers may be surprised to know the good news in that, from the date of the incident, you have up to six whole years to file a claim of reimbursement for any damages inflicted. Whilst this time is quite long and flexible, however, it is always a good idea to submit your claim as soon as possible after the incident has occurred for the best results. Conclusive evidence and recollections that are critical to such complaints’ success can fade over that six years or even be lost or deleted.


How to Claim Compensation


With a wide variety of possible incidents eligible for compensation come a wide variety of ways to submit these claims. Every year, thousands of claims are submitted to airlines with widely varying results. The customer’s right to complain and submit a claim is one of the most important powers and protections afforded to them in the commercial aviation industry.


Idemniflight offers you the absolute highest standard of guidance and assistance in submitting your claim with the lowest amount of hassle and the highest amount of success.  Within the UK, EU regulations on commercial airline claim reimbursements are governed by the Civilian Aviation Authority or CAA. Our team has extensive experience with all relevant policies and legislation at both the EU and UK levels to ensure that your claim, when submitted to the airline, is the best case it can possibly be. With a solid and concise case, your highest possible entitled compensation is much more easily attainable.


Claiming Compensation : What can I get ?


As explored above, compensation rates vary according to the distance of your flight. Airline errors and decision making that directly cause flight cancellations and delays which incur inconvenience and financial losses for you are the most common grounds for compensation. For an overview of the general figures, refer to the following:


  • £220 for journeys of 1,500km or under
  • £350 for journeys of 1,501km to 3,500km
  • £530 for journeys of 3,501km or longer


A critical note to make however is that, unfortunately, delays between three to four hours run the risk of seeing refund amounts being half of what they would be otherwise. Time duration and the circumstances behind the airline’s delaying of the flight or its cancellation play as important of a role as the distance of the flight. When halved, the sums stand at:


  • £110 for journeys of 1,500km or under
  • £175 for journeys of 1,501km to 3,500km
  • £265 for journeys of 3,501km or longer


It may be helpful to determine the distance of your flight’s destination relative to Belfast’s as part of considering what amount of compensation you can reasonably expect. As always, our team is always eager to answer any questions you have.


Claim Compensations during Worker Strikes


Worker strikes in the airline industry are unfortunately the bogeyman when it comes to filing compensation claims against airline corporations. Generally, worker strikes tend to bring either parts of airports or entire airports altogether out of service for however long it takes the involved parties to negotiate with one another.


Per the CAA and EU regulations, labour strikes are considered well outside of the control of airline companies. This means that flight delays and cancellations caused by airline union strikes are not within the scope of reimbursement. Not all is bad news on this front, however!


During the course of a workers’ strike, any incidents that still occur due to an airline’s mismanagement or error can still constitute a valid incident for a reimbursement claim. For example, your seat being erroneously given to another traveller or a checker being diverted to another area from where they were supposed to be are some of the many such possibilities that could unfold that could cause serious losses and inconvenience for you even at the height of a strike that you can still claim compensation for.


Due to the technicalities of responsibility and other additional complexities involved with strike-related claims, the difficulty rises. However, with Idemniflight serving you, let all your discouragement melt away if your claim still stems from direct airline error. We are always willing and able to rise to the challenge to secure you the reimbursement you deserve.


About Belfast Airport


Belfast International Airport is an airport with an extensive history nearly as old as modern aviation itself. It was founded as Aldergrove Airport after a nearby village in 1917 during the First World War. From there clear through to World War II, it served the RAF extensively before finally being designated for widescale civilian use in late 1963. Twenty years later, it would attain its modern name of Belfast International Airport in 1983 with annual arrivals on the steady increase.


Throughout its use in the civilian commercial aviation industry,  the air transit hub has seen many a flight dock and undock from its terminals per day. In modern times it operates multiple terminals and served upwards of 6.2 million passengers as of 2018, up from roughly 2.5 million in the mid to late 1990s as aviation needs in the area expanded. Noteworthy airlines that operate at the airport include Ryanair, Virgin Atlantic, BH Air, and more. Destinations from the airport include places as close as Dublin and London and as distant as Germany and Vilnius in Lithuania via Wizz Air as of 2019.


Of particular interest, is the airport’s recent performance industry. A ranking conducted by Which? Magazine of 30 different airports within the United Kingdom placed Belfast directly at the bottom with a dismal score of 42% for customer satisfaction. After all, like all forms of transportation hubs, strategic and commercial importance for a site does not always guarantee the highest quality of service offered there for all.


As of 2019, the airport hosts transport links including by road, train, and bus. The M2 motorway provides driving commuters a direct link between the airport, Belfast, and the surrounding metro area with multiple car parks. Translink offers bus service to the city centre of Belfast. Meanwhile, train connections via Antrim station lead from the airport to both Belfast proper and Derry. Train connections straight to Dublin are also available for commuters.


By and large, this airport is the busiest in all of Northern Ireland, and the second busiest overall on the entire island just behind Dublin. Whilst it is a critical air hub, its occasional middling to negative visitor reviews indicate it as a likely source of common incidents that can trigger the need to submit a claim for reimbursement for a wide variety of reasons.


How Long Have I got to Claim ?


While filing your claim as soon as possible after the incident is often the most prudent, it is also a great comfort to realise that your window for filing your claim with the airline in question is quite broad indeed at a whole six years from the date of the incident! This gives individuals plenty of breathing room to gather all the necessary evidence and other materials.


Get Professional Help!


Idemniflight is at your service for all your reimbursement claim needs! We offer not just an intuitive, easy to navigate website, but also a postal address should you wish to correspond with us via old fashioned but reliable letter format. We can also be reached by telephone and via email.


Members of our team are on standby in an active forum to answer any questions you and others may have about claims, as well as to browse on topics relating to claims and various situations and experiences others have had with the commercial aviation industry. You deserve only the best in indemnification guidance, and it is in our very name! Don’t wait, contact us by your preferred method today and get your reimbursement claim on the fast track to success with Idemniflight.