How Some Airlines Can Charge You for Requesting Flight Delay Compensation

When an NFL coach challenges a play, he’s putting a timeout at risk.  If the referee decides he’s correct and the call is reversed, he benefits.  If the referee decides he’s incorrect (or the evidence is inconclusive), the coach loses more than just that call–he loses a timeout.  It’s a penalty to try to prevent frivolous challenges on the field.

The EU has strict rules surrounding flight delays.  You can get compensation much more easily there than in the United States.

Which is why some airlines may be taking a page out of the NFL’s playbook.  (Wow, I didn’t even start that sentence on purpose).

In some cases, if someone submits a claim for a flight delay and their claim is denied, they could owe the airline £25 if they continue pursuing the claim.

flight delay

From the Telegraph:

Under EU rules, travellers can claims up to €600 (£510) in compensation for flights that are delayed for more than three hours. Some of the services administering claims, however, insist that unsuccessful claimants pay the charge, placing a potential barrier in the way of claims.

Passengers for British Airways, Thomson, Thomas Cook and Easyjet face having to pay the £25 fee.

The amount that passengers are entitled to claim depends on the distance of the flight and length of the delay.

If a claim is rejected or a passenger is unhappy with the result then they can ask for an independent service to decide whether the outcome is fair.

Now, it’s not exactly the airline that charges the passengers–well, not directly.  They use a dispute resolution service to review claims, which requires the charge if you decide to continue pursuing the case.

I’m not sure how I feel about this.  While I don’t want people to file frivolous claims, travel is confusing.  Most times, consumers don’t know exactly what they are entitled to.  This requires consumers to know exactly what they are entitled under the law, and punishes them if they are wrong–either by having to pay the £25 fee or not even filing at all.

Are you for or against this policy?

Edit: I should have mentioned, there are services out there that can help you find out if you are eligible for compensation.

About Jeanne Marie Hoffman

Former bartender, still a geek. One equal part each cookies, liberty, football, music, travel, libations. Stir vigorously. +Jeanne Marie Hoffman Jeanne on Twitter

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  1. Against this policy as airlines are out right lying in their data submission with the sole propose of having them look good. This policy honors employee who will willing submit fraudulent data into systems, so that the airlines can reject passengers submissions. I would not be surprised that employees who assists in creating rejects will be financially encourage to reject ALL claims if they can get away with it.
    We have seen this in the US medical insurance industry – don’t let the airlines get away with it also.

  2. “Which is why some airlines may be taken a page out of the NFL’s playbook.”
    I think you meant “taking” and not “taken”

  3. Or maybe “taken” was subconscious.

    “If you are looking for £25 I can tell you I don’t have money, but what I do have are a very particular set of travel skills. Skills I have acquired over very long flight delays. Skills that make me a nightmare for carriers like you. If you fairly compensate me and the other passengers now that’ll be the end of it.”

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