An estimated 300,000 passengers will be affected by the cancellation of 50 Ryanair flights a day. Are you affected? You may be entitled to more than just a refund.
Budget airline Ryanair recently announced it will cancel up to 50 flights a day for the next six weeks, a period that extends until the end of October.
The airline claims the measure is designed readdress holiday leave entitlements for its staff, but some analysts believe it is due to a shortage of pilots, after Norwegian airlines announced that 140 of them had joined its business this year.
Unfortunately, it has decided not to publish a list of cancelled flights in advance of a couple of days. Instead it has opted to text (SMS) passengers a day or sometimes even just hours before their scheduled flight.
A spokesperson for Ryanair said: “We apologise sincerely to the small number of customers affected by these cancellations, and will be doing our utmost to arrange alternative flights and/or full refunds for them.”
UPDATE: Since we published this article Ryanair have now backtracked on their decision not to publish a list of cancellations. Details are all affected flights can now be found at https://www.ryanair.com/ie/en/useful-info/help-centre/travel-updates/flight-cancellations7
But your rights under EU compensation rules actually go further than that.
- Passengers are entitled to assistance and compensation, if the disruption was within an airline's control
- Airlines have to offer full refunds, paid within seven days, or rebookings for a flight cancelled at short notice
- In addition, passengers can also claim compensation
- Cancellation amounts are: 250 euros (£218) for short-haul, 440 euros (£384) for medium-haul and 600 euros (£523) for long-haul
- Passengers who reach their destination more than three hours late can be compensated from 200 to 600 euros, depending on the length of flights and delay
The Commission for Aviation Regulation says your airline must provide at least two weeks notice of a cancellation in order to avoid paying compensation. Ryanair passengers informed of flight cancellations leading up to 20 September could therefore be eligible, but the company is likely to inform those booked on later flights well in advance to avoid being liable.
Passengers given less than seven days notice must be offered an alternative flight departing no more than one hour before the original flight, and arriving within two hours of the original schedule. This may be with another airline. Alternatively, you must be given a full refund.
What to do if you’re affected and how to claim your compensation?
Firstly, If you haven’t travelled yet it is worth checking the Ryaniar website to see if your flight is affected. If it is Ryanair will let you change for flight for free, or offer a refund.
For refund claims visit https://refundclaims.ryanair.com/ these will be processed within seven working days.
If you are entitled to compensation due to being given less than two weeks notice, you can lodge claim at https://eu261expenseclaim.ryanair.com Accepted claims are often paid within a week.
Those already abroad really need to get in touch with Ryanair, something that might be easier said than done. The airline is responsible for providing accommodation, and meals until it can get you home. If it has no flights available, it should book you flight with another operator e.g. British Airways, EasyJet etc…
There have been reports of some passengers being told by airport staff that they are entitled to only one night's accommodation, which is not true. The airline's obligation extends for as long as it takes to get you to where you need to be.
If all else fails, and Ryanair refuses to play ball be sure to keep all receipts for accommodation, food, transport (if necessary) to make claim once you are home.