Flight delays and cancellations – they’re the worst way to start and end much looked-forward-to trips. Disclosure: This post was commissioned by MYFLYRIGHT who help travellers who have had flights in the EU delayed or cancelled to claim compensation.
Tap tap-tap. After a long weekend exploring Cologne, we were all pretty tired. Some of our group had flown back to the UK a bit earlier in the day, landing in Manchester, but we sorry few had rocked up and checked into our London flight a few hours later. Arriving at our gate – one at the very end of the airport terminal – we began to suspect that our flight was delayed when there were no airline staff anywhere near said gate, but we chalked it up to ‘one of those travel things’.
Tap tap-tap. We drew closer and closer to takeoff time, still without sight or sound of gate crew.
Tap tap-tap. The word DELAYED flashes up on the board, accompanied by the resigned groan of everyone waiting.
Tap tap-tap. 5 minutes before we should have taken off, and we’re still sat in the uncomfortable plastic of chairs that airports specialise in. You know, the ones that seem to only ever mould to the backs of pedestrian crossing characters, not actual human beings with spines.
Tap tap-tap. DELAYED – HALD AN HOUR. We check our watches/iPhones/laptops – and murmur ‘that’s ok, we’ll still land at Stansted for 11 pm. That’s totally workable.’
Tap tap-tap. Delayed – One Hour. Oh no.
Tap tap-tap. The gate loudspeaker crackles on “Attention all passengers for the 2230 Flight RC3321 Cologne to London Stansted. We are sorry for the delay to this flight, please refer to the gate departure boards for updates.” Well, that was unhelpful or rather sadistic, depending on whether you’re a glass half full or half empty kinda person.
Tap tap-tap. Tap tap-tap. One of our group makes a mercy dash back through the terminal to buy everyone fries to share – clearing out their kitchen of hot, salted spud sticks – and earning tired grins and ten minutes of chatter about literally anything not flight-related, travel or *shudder* the word delay.
Tap tap-tap. All around us fellow travellers were dropping like flies. One fellow passenger who – most randomly – I knew from a client’s office, had crawled fully under a table to snooze on her backpack, the kiosks had been emptied of coffee and our batteries were rapidly draining thanks to endless levels of CandyCrush. I, rather luckily, realised that my suitcase was the perfect height to balance my laptop on and managed to draft up a blog post or two.
Tap tap-tap. Finally. We had a takeoff time. 3.5 hours after our original takeoff, we were boarded, buckled in and eager to feel that rush of taking off. Luckily, I never trust late evening flights and had booked myself an airport hotel room, but many of the people I was travelling had to get back to London long after the trains had stopped running. Hassle-filled, stressful and worse, the flight got everyone home with only a few hours before they had to get up for work on a Monday morning. Oh, the joys of flight delays and cancellations.
Worst of all, I’ve never claimed for this or other delays – I shall have to sit down and hop onto the Myflyright claim calculator! To claim compensation with Myflyright, there are only two conditions: 1) an airline should be registered headquartered in the EU and/or 2) the flight should depart from an EU airport.
Did you know that 80% of passengers are unaware of their rights in case of flight delays? Only a fraction – about 5% – of those affected succeed in enforcing their claims independently, as the airlines often exploit the naivete of passengers to avoid compensating. With MYFLYRIGHT, checking if you can claim compensation for your flight delay is free of charge. If you decide to use the service, MYFLYRIGHT will pursue your claim against the airline with no financial risk, and they charge a percentage of the money refunded.
The crew at MYFLYRIGHT kindly sponsored this post (sharing my own personal experience in Cologne) in order to keep our wanderlust strong and the travel fund topped up for future fun and blog posts.
Have you ever claimed for delayed flights?
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