Thursday, July 25, 2024

Know your EU passenger rights before you travel

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All packed, and ready to go? For those of you heading off on a summer break soon, we hope your travel plans don’t go wrong, but if they should, you should know that EU travel rules cover passengers in a number of eventualities. Whether your flight is cancelled, your train delayed or your luggage lost aboard your cruise ship, you have the right to make a claim under EU-wide passenger rights. 

What you are entitled to if you need to make a claim will vary from the type of transport you use (air, rail, bus/coach or boat) and whether you travel into, out or within the EU.  In most cases, however, there is a standard procedure to follow if you need to make a claim over a delay, cancellation or problems with luggage. 

First, contact the travel company you bought your ticket from, using the complaint form they provide. If you don’t receive a reply from the company within 1 to 3 months depending on the type of chosen transport, or if you are not satisfied with the reply, you can lodge a complaint with the relevant national authority in the country where the problem happened. You can always contact your local European Consumer Centre for help and advice on problems related to passenger rights, too. 

If you still encounter problems with your claim, you can also try to resolve your dispute using out-of-court procedures – or an Alternative Dispute Resolution entity. If you bought your ticket online, you can submit your complaint via the Online Dispute Resolution platform. These 2 forms of dispute resolution are only available to EU residents.  

If you have a disability or reduced mobility, you have the right to access air, train, bus, coach, or boat travel like anybody else and the right to free assistance at terminals and on-board vehicles. If you feel your rights have been breached, follow the guidelines above for making a claim. More details on your passenger rights are given below. 

For more information 

Passenger rights 

Rights for travellers with disabilities or reduced mobility 

Out of court procedures for consumers 

Online dispute resolution 

European Consumer Centres Network 

Download the “Your Passenger Rights” app to your smartphone ( Google AndroidApple iOS

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