12 June 2023

Flight departed early compensation

Flight departed early compensation

The verdict of December 21, 2021, from the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) brings surprising news for passengers of flights from Germany - if your flight departs over an hour earlier than planned, you may claim compensation.

According to the CJEU, such flights can be considered "cancelled", which gives passengers the right to refer to the European Parliament Regulation 261/2004. According to this document, in the event of flight cancellation, the carrier is obliged to provide passengers with seats on another flight on the same route as soon as possible, or to refund the money for unused tickets. In addition, passengers can seek compensation, provided that the carrier did not inform them about the change of departure time at least two weeks before the planned flight date.

What does this mean for German passengers?

The CJEU ruling is of great importance to German passengers who experience expedited flights. According to the ruling, in case of a significant acceleration of the flight, the carrier is obliged to pay full compensation, which is set based on the length of the flight (250, 400, or 600 euros).

Similar to delayed flights, passengers of expedited flights are deprived of the opportunity to manage their time freely, which can lead to various inconveniences. In such situations, they are entitled to appropriate compensation.

What are the requirements?

It is important that the reservation confirmation you receive from the carrier contains information such as the place and time of departure and arrival, as well as the flight number.

The carrier is also obliged to directly inform passengers about changes in flight plans, even if the tickets were purchased through a third party. If the carrier does not inform passengers about changes at least two weeks before the planned flight, it may be considered cancelled.

How to get compensation?

If your departure flight is expedited, you have the right to claim compensation. To make a claim, you must provide the flight number, the name of the initial and final airport, the delay time, as well as one of the following documents: boarding pass, ticket, travel agency contract, or reservation confirmation.

Although airlines often do not respond to individual customer claims, it is worth using the services of companies specializing in compensation claims. Thanks to their services, the process of claiming compensation for expedited flights is significantly simpler and more effective.

If as a result of changing flight plans you incur additional costs, you must also present bills and receipts.

In conclusion

The CJEU ruling is an important step towards protecting passenger rights. If your flight is expedited, you should know that you are entitled to compensation. Be aware of your rights and know how to effectively assert your claims. As a result, air travel will become more passenger-friendly, and carriers will understand that they must respect the rights of their customers.