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Archive for December, 2012

Travel delay caused by freezing fog and ice

Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

Yet again, cold weather, freezing fog and ice has caused travel disruption with several key airports, including Heathrow, cancelling flights with aircraft grounded.

For those flying from UK airports and who suffer delays or are stranded, then it’s useful to know what rights you have. Under the European directive of Air Passenger Rights, all EU operators have a duty of care to passengers and should be responding to claims for delay by providing at least food and drink vouchers for those caught up in the delays at the airports.

If you are stopped from boarding, you may be entitled to compensation between €125 and €600 depending on flight distance and the delays incurred when re-routed.  For long delays, you may request a refund of your ticket if the delay exceeds five hours, but only if you decide not to travel.

The only snag is that, as with so much EU legislation, what is given in one hand is often taken away in the other. Under these rules the airline can claim protection for delays relating to, yes that’s right “weather” amongst others. The protection the airlines have is a sting in the tail for passengers as losses from “Weather, Air Traffic Problems, Security & Safety, Political Unrest, and Strikes”, are reasons why an airline will not pay out compensation to travellers.

So all WASPS have a sting in their tails!   So what about travel insurance? Under the delay section of a policy, most insurers will give some benefit for periods of delay faced at the airport. For those facing longer delays, then travellers may be eligible to abandon their holidays but do check your individual travel insurance documents as some of the cheaper basic covers do exclude this protection.

This article is brought to you by Travelandinsure.com – specialist in ethical travel insurance.