We had originally planned to leave Orlando on flights number DY7060 at 10:50 PM on March 26th, 2018; However, we ended up leaving 44 hours and 30 minutes later at 7:20 PM on March 28th due to flight delays. Despite perfect weather, but operational reasons from our original airline, we were asked if we could volunteer for an alternate flight at 9:58 AM on March 26th. If we agreed we would be compensated with €200 each. Although a tempting offer, we ignored the request. Twelve minutes later our flight was cancelled altogether and we were automatically switched to a different carrier which was down for a full day per "mandatory crew rest caused by technical reasons on a previous sector".
Our new flight time would be 08:30 on March 28th and our flight number would change to DY7960. At 6:48 PM on the 27th we were notified that due to mandatory crew rest again, our flight would be further delayed until 13:30 (1:30 PM) on the 28th and that we would each receive a $15 meal voucher for our inconvenience, something that certainly made us feel like we were winning the lottery! Upon arrival to check in at the airport, the flight was delayed again. At 11:55 AM we were informed that due to mandatory crew rest, yet again, our new estimated departure time was 16:00 (4 PM).
After passing through security and arriving at our departure gate we were notified that there would be a delay to boarding due to a small water line leak at one of the toilets. Their decision was to remove the water from the aircraft and continue the flight, inconveniencing us with a lack of hot beverages and a requirement to use bottled water at lavatory sinks. We were able to board the plane around 6:00 PM; However, we waited for an hour on the tarmac for clearance on our new route. We began pulling away from the gate around 7:05 PM and officially took off at 7:20 PM. We landed in Paris at 3:30 AM Eastern Time, 09:30 Paris time. By using Uber around 10:30 we were finally able to arrive at our destination at 11:00 Paris time. The airline culprit? Norwegian Air. The other carrier? HiFly.
What we learned can help you too! Roughly 8 million people worldwide are eligible for money, miles or vouches from airlines, but less than 2% know it!
EU Regulation 261/2004 is the law around flight delay compensation. It was originally introduced on the 17th February 2005 when it immediately became binding law in each of the EU Member States. Flight Delay Regulations apply to anybody (regardless of age or nationality) whose flight departs from an airport based in an EU country or whose flight arrives into an EU country and is operated by an EU airline. That means any flights taking off from the UK, or landing in the UK on an EU airline are always covered. Compensation could be up to €600 per person.
Some things to note: Travel Insurance may reimburse you based on your policy. Additionally, while EU Regulation 261/2004 can get you up to €600 per person, they do not have to reimburse you if you claim €600 as "compensation". "Compensation" in regards to airline policy does not refer to what you are entitled (up to €600 per person in "compensation"). However, this term refers to your pay/salary lost as part of your job, which they are not legally liable for so they will not pay you for this amount. Despite that confusion, they are most likely going to give you the full €600 per person as required. However, you should also submit a list of the additional costs that you've incurred due to the delay in which they will likely also compensate you for.
Nearly 2 months after our delayed flight and request for reimbursement, we received an email from the airline stating the following:
"Thank you for contacting us with your claim. We regret the time it's taken to respond to you and we thank you for your patience. Unfortunately, Norwegian flight DY7060 (MCO-CDG) 26.03.2018 was cancelled. Despite our best efforts, we were unable to avoid the disruption to this flight*. Based on the nature of this disruption you're entitled to standard EU compensation: 600 EUR pp. (1200 EUR ). On this occasion, we'd be happy to reimburse the following costs: - hotel(289.98 USD) - other costs (75.43 USD ). Unfortunately, we're unable to cover the other expenses claimed as we're not liable for such costs. For information regarding the legal basis for the reimbursement of financial losses in the event of a flight disruption, please see below**."
When the payment arrived in our bank account, it was €600 per person PLUS the additional hotel and other costs ($1,850.88 in total). It arrived on June 11th.
Check: EU Regulation 261/ 2004 for more information or let us know about your problem and we can help you file a claim.
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Jenny & Bradley of EatWanderExplore