AirHelp – How Much Are Airline Claims Worth
I wrote some time back about this great product that is designed to assist with flight delay claims and how important it is to again emphasize for all you out there how important it is to claim when you experience delays or cancellations of your flights.
How Much Money is Involved
Recently I received an email follow-up from AirHelp as part of their affiliates program with an amazing illustration of how much money is really involved in the claims procedure against the airline industry and here is the tabular representation for you.
Last Years Travel Disruption
No. of Passangers Eligible for Compensation
Money Owed to Passengers
As you can see from this table, there is a wopping €350 million left over in unpaid potential claims from passengers that have suffered delays or flight cancellations. So why are so few people claiming this money from the airlines? Well, this can largely be attributed to ignorance of what your rights are in terms of the Montreal Convention that was established to regulate consumer rights for delayed and cancelled flights.
Airlines are not obligated to make consumers aware of their rights or procedures for claiming compensation and let’s face it, it’s not in their best interests to do so as they would then be loosing money. According to AirHelp, €443m was left behind this time last year in unpaid potential claims by travellers.
Firstly: Know Your Rights
There are 6 main types of claims that you as a traveller could potentially submit to the airline:
- Flight Delays Claim
- Flight Cancellations Claim
- Missed Connections Claim
- Overbooking Claim
- Denied Boarding Claim
- Delayed Luggage Claim
The interesting part is that should you have experienced any of these problems within the last 3 years, it is still possible to submit a claim against the airline you flew with. There are some thresholds that applied, by that I mean if the delay is say for 10 minutes, this claim does not qualify.
There are 2 main considerations that are taken into account when calculating the claim value. The first one consideration is the time impact on the traveller and the second one is the distance of the flight. The longer the delay and the longer the flight distance equates to a large claim compensation value. Delay claims generally start from 3-4 hours delays and work their way up from there. The claims range from around 250€ to a maximum of 600€ depending on these factors.
Secondly: What Do I Need to Claim
It important that you keep you boarding passes from you travels to have all the details handy when you need them. The website will ask you to fill out you departure and destination to check you eligibility.
A world of caution, never sign any document that the airline gives you to sign that waives you right to claim. You might feel obligated to if they have already compensated you in other ways such as vouchers or hotels but do not sign that document. By doing so, you will be unable to claim any further compensation in the future which will not benefit you in the long run.
Thirdly: The Claim Process
This is a 3 step process where:
- The initial eligibility is checked to make sure you claim qualifies once it is submitted on the AirHelp website
- Additional information of incident are requested such as inclement weather or safety concern
- Finally, the website will require you to submit you travel documentation as proof that you were on that flight
Give it a Try
There is nothing to lose here other than the small amount of time needed to fill in the forms. Any delay you can think of that happened in the last 3 years could qualify to give you cash back in you pocket and all you need is your flight details to check if you qualify.
So click on the AirHelp link and submit your information for a no cost or obligation evaluation of your claim and see if you qualify for compensation. That might be the bump you need to start planning your next great adventure.