Refund Rights for Lengthy Delays

Tracy Stewart, July 17, 2007
Fares from Washington DC:

    Q. I am writing with a question about the possibility of getting a refund for a long flight delay. Last Sunday I was supposed to fly with Transavia from Treviso to Amsterdam and the flight had a 10-hour delay. We were given a lousy food voucher and nothing else. One of my fellow passengers said that as of February this year airlines are supposed to refund airfare for flights delayed more then 5 hours. Is that right? The Transavia staff of course never mentioned this possibility.

    A. Your fellow passenger is correct. According to European Economic Community regulations on passenger delays, if your flight is delayed by five or more hours, you are entitled to a refund and, if you're left stranded in the middle of your connection, a flight back to your original point of departure. You should definitely point this out to the folks at Transavia, but keep in mind that most airlines aren't exactly eager to hand out a refund. It may take a little hounding on your part to cut through their runaround. Check our Rules of Carriage page for the EEC regulations in their entirety.