Friday 19 December 2014

What to do when your airline goes on strike

Siobhan Howe

Published 20/06/2014 | 02:30

Depending on the distance of your flight and the length of time you are delayed, your airline must provide you with 'care and assistance'.
Depending on the distance of your flight and the length of time you are delayed, your airline must provide you with 'care and assistance'.

My sister and I booked flights online a number of months ago to Bangkok and I'm worried now about what would happen if the airline goes on strike. I wanted to know what we would be entitled to if our flight is delayed or cancelled.

Also, our connecting flight was booked separately but we do have a couple of hours' waiting time, so shouldn't be affected if we are delayed for a while. However, if the first flight ends up being cancelled, are we entitled to a refund for the other flight?

Depending on the distance of your flight and the length of time you are delayed, your airline must provide you with 'care and assistance'.

This normally includes meals and refreshments, access to a telephone, computer, hotel accommodation where necessary and transport between the airport and the hotel.

If the delay is for more than five hours and you no longer wish to travel, you are entitled to a full refund.

If your flight is cancelled, regardless of when you are notified of the cancellation, your air carrier must give you the choice of a rescheduled flight as close as possible to the original departure time, a rescheduled flight for a later date or offer a full refund of the cost of the unused flight ticket.

The entitlements you receive will depend on when you were notified about the cancellation.

For further details on what your entitlements are visit www.flightrights.ie.

In your case, as your connecting flight was booked through a different airline under a separate contract, you will not be entitled to a refund if the cancelled flight means you miss your second flight.

However, if you have travel insurance I would suggest you check the terms and conditions of your policy, as some policies have an allowance for costs caused by delays

Siobhán Howe works with the National Consumer Agency. showe@independent.ie

Irish Independent

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