A tale as old as time. A delayed or canceled flight can be a huge pain in the neck. It messes up your plans for the whole trip, and to make matters worse, you have to worry about other details as well.
Overall, it’s not a pleasant thing to happen to anyone and we get why. But here are some things that you should do if your airline has just messed up your plans.
What to do if your flight has been canceled/ delayed:
1. The Montreal Convention has your back
The Montreal Convention has established that passengers are entitled to compensation if any damage was caused to them due to travel disruption or luggage issues. Passengers can get compensation up to $3,000 for any damage caused.
And in case of injury or death, they can get up to $70,000. In case of any delay, luggage issues, or financial loss you are eligible and entitled to ask for compensation, according to the Montreal Convention. However, there are some exceptions such as bad weather, air traffic restrictions, any medical emergency, and so on.
If you wish to file a complaint you need as much proof as possible.
2. Compensation of the U.S. Flight
Even though U.S. airlines are not required to provide any compensation to the passengers when their flight is canceled or delayed, they do however have the responsibility to compensate those people who were left behind from an oversold flight.
In addition, they are also required to provide any information regarding the flight status, if it departs in the next seven days. You might get compensation if your flight was delayed by a lot, but you would have to check with the airlines first.
3. Talk to an airline representative
This is the first step to take when this has just happened to you. To learn what your options are, what you can do next, and if they will offer some sort of compensation, talk to a representative first. Either call the number displayed on the airline’s website or walk to the airline’s departure gate.
4. If you had a connecting flight find out what happened to it
If you had a connecting flight and your first flight got delayed/canceled, there’s a 99% chance you’re going to miss the second flight. Talk to your airline representative they might be able to change your connecting flight.
5. Check the insurance policy
Call your travel insurance provider and explain the situation, you may receive compensation for that. In addition, you may receive compensation to help you with the accommodation, and local transportation, and will provide you with services that will manage to book you a new flight.
6. Consider purchasing a lounge pass
Lounges are specially designed areas for a traveler’s leisure and comfort. They exist in every airport and if you have to wait some more there’s no better place to do that than in a lounge.
Your travel insurance will cover some of the costs if the airline won’t, here are three insurance benefits you should keep your eye on before embarking on a trip:
- Travel delay benefit: If your plane has been delayed for more than 5 hours three plans will get you up to a $2,000 compensation.
- Trip cancelation benefit: There are also three plans which, in case your flight got canceled due to: extreme weather conditions, injury or illnesses, or an airline strike, can get you a compensation worth $150,000.
- Baggage delay benefit: If your baggage has been delayed you can get compensation up to $500.
In the future, consider these tips to avoid any unpleasant situations:
Tips to prevent a canceled or delayed flight:
- Book yourself a morning flight: The chances of a flight being delayed in the afternoon are way higher than it happening in the morning.
- Book a flight in the middle of the week: In the middle of the week, fewer people leave the city so the chances of it being delayed are of course smaller. And it’s also cheaper.
- Book a flight with no stops: If you have more stops on a flight, there are higher chances of one of the connecting flights getting delayed. If it’s financially convenient for you, book a direct flight. It’s also more relaxing when you don’t have to run from one gate to another.
1. Check the forecast
Check the weather forecast in advance, because if you encounter serious weather inconvenience then the chances of the flight being delayed or, worse, canceled, are higher. So, what you can do is keep an eye on the weather, and change the flight if possible in case the weather is bad.
If you plan a spontaneous or last-minute trip ALWAYS keep this in mind.
2. Bring only a carry-on
Besides the fact that it’s cheaper and it saves a lot of time from the check-in if you have a delayed or canceled flight getting your bags back can be pretty challenging and can take forever.
3. Traveling for the holidays? Extend your trip
When it comes to booking flights around the holidays, besides the fact that the tickets can be crazy expensive, everyone is leaving town to either go back home or visit some relatives. Usually, the busiest days are the ones after the holiday and those the day before.
A crowded and busy airport means tons of delays and flight cancellations, and we are more than sure that you don’t want to be stuck at the airport for the holidays for who knows how long! So, book them in advance and search for the best dates that won’t break the bank and will also get wherever you want to with no unpleasantries.
4. Always purchase travel insurance
Even though you have to pay some extra bucks, to get some is worth it, especially in cases like these. You never know what obstacle can appear to spoil your plans. Having travel insurance can turn out to be very beneficial for you if anything unplanned happens during your trip. It can ease your costs if you have a delayed or canceled flight.
It’s very helpful for situations such as: having your bags missing or delayed, canceled or delayed flight. If you had prepaid activities and the flight delay or cancellation made you lose that money, they can reimburse you the lost amount.
5. Read the guidelines for canceled or delayed flights
We sometimes skip the reading part… you know like we do with the Terms & Conditions section whenever we purchase something. But, it’s not always the brightest idea to do so since it can turn out to be beneficial for us, like in this case.
Airlines usually have a dedicated category or section on their website which can guide you or answer some of your questions when this unfortunate incident happens. Make sure that you read those terms before purchasing a ticket since it’s possible that some of them will not be too helpful in these situations.
There’s nothing worse than having your plans drastically changed, especially your vacation plans. However, sometimes things we have no control over happen, and the best that we can do is to stay calm and find a way out of this.
Next time you plan a trip, to avoid flight delay or cancellation, follow the steps provided above. If you did and it still happened to you then make sure to ask for compensation or a new flight. Trips are nice and relaxing, but when these things happen, we would rather be in our bed sleeping and watching something good on TV, am I right?
Your next read should be: 14 SHOCKING Facts Hotels Are Hiding From You.