Cyprus Mail

Know your passenger rights

Passengers wait for their flights

By Evie Andreou

MEMBERS of the Cyprus European Consumer Centre ECCC have been informing passengers of their rights at Larnaca airport this week.

The campaign, which is part of an EU-wide effort to inform consumers of their rights and to reinforce consumer trust in the EU’s internal market, took place at Larnaca airport for the fourth year in a row. The campaign will take place in 17 EU member-states in June and July.

ECCC head Elena Papachristoforou said that the timing is crucial, before the summer season where most people travel by air and that it would be good to inform travellers of their rights in case their flight is delayed or cancelled, or in the case of the loss of luggage.

She explained that passengers’ rights are protected by European law and that there was an interest from passengers especially those travelling to EU destinations to learn more.

Air passenger rights are valid if their flight departs from an EU country, as well as Iceland, Norway and Switzerland, or arrives in an EU country on board an EU licenced carrier.

If a flight is delayed for more than two hours passengers are entitled to meals, accommodation, communication facilities and in some cases financial compensation.

If a flight is cancelled, the airline must give passengers the choice between reimbursement or rerouting and they may also be entitled to additional compensation (€125-600) under some conditions, but not if the airline can prove that the cancellation was caused by extraordinary circumstances (e.g. airspace closure) or if passengers were informed at least 14 days prior the flight, or if they were rerouted close to their original schedule.

If luggage is lost, damaged or delayed, passengers may be entitled to compensation from the airline of up to €1200.

If a passenger is denied boarding, they have the choice between reimbursement or rerouting. They may also be entitled to compensation and if they choose re-routing, they are entitled to assistance.

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