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Airports Freeze: Travellers’ Rights

  • December 22nd, 2010
  • Posted by EUEditor

airport-cdeg.jpgAir travellers held up by the pre-Christmas freeze on flights are being told they have full rights to reimbursement of fares, on the same basis as travellers delayed when volcanic ash stopped air services flights during April.

Mass payouts now would make 2010 truly a difficult, if not crippling year for much of the aviation industry.

Flying across almost the whole of Europe stopped for extended periods, including one black week last April, because of a threat posed by dust in the air, thrown up by a volcano in Iceland (picture).

See EUAustralia Online, “Air Crisis…”, 21.4.10; Iceland volcano: world without planes”, 18.4.10; “Iceland volcano hits flights …”, 16.4.10.

Automatically, under an EU Regulation, passengers can get reimbursement for flights that are cancelled, in the case of European carriers, for travel within the 27 countries of the European Union, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland.

As well, that law requires that the airlines in such cases provide customers stranded at airports with such assistance as meals and accommodation.

Le Monde this week (21.12.10) has  quoted the consumer federation UFC-Que Choisir as assuring passengers from cancelled flights, that their situation with the freezing g weather is the same as when people were held up because of the volcano, and received reimbursements.

The early Winter chill has caused extensive cancellations and delays this week, as snow and ice shut down runways and tarmacs at airports, and slowed congested train services, in several countries including Belgium, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

See EUAustralia Online, “Airports …”, (22.12.10); “Freeze stays …”, (21.12.10); “Fresh cold snap”, (19.12.10).

Reference

Le Monde / AFP, Paris, Vols annulés : les associations demandent le remboursement, (cancelled flights: organisations seek reimbursements), 21.12.10. http://www.lemonde.fr/planete/article/2010/12/21/vols-annules-les-associations-demandent-le-remboursement_1456365_3244.html#xtor=EPR-32280229-[NL_Titresdujour]-2010122, (22.12.10).

Picture  Charles de Gaulle Airport terminal

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