12 June 2023

Flight departed early compensation

Flight departed early compensation

On December 21, 2021, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) issued a ruling that might surprise many airline passengers. If your plane departed more than an hour earlier than scheduled, you might be entitled to compensation for the accelerated flight.

The CJEU ruling classifies such cases as "cancelled" flights, which provides a basis for invoking European Parliament Regulation 261/04. According to this regulation, in the event of a cancelled flight, the carrier must provide a seat on the plane on the same route as soon as possible or refund the money for the tickets. Additionally, passengers can claim compensation. It is crucial that the carrier did not inform about the acceleration of the flight at least two weeks before it started.

What does this mean for passengers?

The CJEU ruling is significant for passengers whose flights are accelerated. The Court has determined that in the event of a significant acceleration of the flight, the carrier should always pay the full amount of compensation, which depends on the flight distance (250, 400, or 600 EUR).

Both during flight delays and accelerations, passengers lose the ability to freely manage their time, which can lead to various inconveniences. Hence, they deserve appropriate compensation.

What conditions need to be met?

The decisive factor for resolving the issue of the scheduled flight time will be not only the flight ticket but also the booking confirmation, which contains information such as the place and time of departure and arrival, along with the flight number.

Moreover, the carrier should inform passengers about the change in flight schedule directly, even if they used intermediary services. Now, if the airline does not inform about changes at least two weeks before the planned flight date, the flight may be considered cancelled.

How to get compensation?

If your plane departed earlier than planned, you can claim compensation. To file a claim, it is necessary to provide the flight number, names of the starting and destination airport, length of delay, and one of the following documents: boarding pass, ticket, contract with a travel agency, or booking confirmation.

However, airlines rarely respond to individual customer requests, so claiming compensation on your own can end in failure. In this case, it is worth using the services of companies that specialize in claiming compensation. With their help, the process of claiming compensation for an accelerated flight becomes much simpler and more effective.

In the event that you incur additional costs as a result of flight disruption, it is also necessary to present receipts, bills, and invoices.


The CJEU ruling is a significant step towards protecting passenger rights. If your flight is accelerated, you should know that you are entitled to compensation. It's important that you are aware of your rights and know how to effectively claim your rights. Thanks to this, air travel will become more passenger-friendly, and carriers will understand that they must respect the rights of their customers.