Passengers can claim for cancellations beyond airlines’ control
Airline industry experts warn that a landmark ruling by the European Court over flight cancellations is likely to result in a rise in ticket prices. The court ruled last week that passengers can claim for flight cancellations even if the circumstances are beyond an airline’s control. The court case related to a British couple claiming expenses from Ryanair for a 22-hour delay on a flight between Tenerife to the East Midlands due to a technical fault. Ryanair said that the ruling would “materially increase the cost of flying across Europe”.
Legal expert David Stihler agrees that the ruling is a victory for passengers, but only on “the face of it”.
“This decision can be seen as a victory for passengers, who can be compensated for their outlays due to cancelled flights while waiting to be re-routed to their point of origin. However, the question has to be asked about who will ultimately bear those costs. If it is the case that compensation is payable for cancelled flights due to freak weather events then it is likely that airlines will seek to recoup those costs. Passengers will consequently see an increase in their air fares. It is compensation, but not without costs to the consumer,” he said.
[pictured: Sunset at CPH; courtesy Copenhagen Airports]