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Monday, 3 November 2014 12:00 AM

Supreme Court - Flight Delay Compensation

Morocco is a short flight away from the UK, and typically the start and end of your holiday is an uneventful flight with a budget airline – something soon forgotten amongst the far more pleasant memories of your holiday exploring Morocco. Unfortunately, very occasionally flight delays do occur and this can affect you significantly.

As previously discussed in Holidays Interruption Due To Volcanic Ash when your flight is delayed certain EU rules may come in to play.

In particular if your flight is delayed by more than 3 hours due to reasons that are not extraordinary, and your flight starts or ends in the EU then compensation rules come into effect.

Supreme Court Ruling

Last week the Supreme Court ruled to reject the application by Thomson Airways and Jet2 to appeal an earlier ruling ordering them to pay compensation for travel delays in a couple of cases. This Supreme Court ruling confirms that passengers in England and Wales have 6 years to make a claim (ruling on Thomson) and that technical faults are not extraordinary circumstances (ruling on Jet2) but are within the control of the airline.

Until this ruling there was ongoing uncertainty as to what events could be claimed as being extraordinary. Therefore extraordinary circumstances causing delays may be thought to include war and weather, but not much else.

Compensation Due

The compensation now due for such delays is £470 plus expenses. Industry commentators state that this will have the effect of increasing flight prices in future and that past claims could total billions of pounds.

Cancellations Of Flights To Morocco

As discussed before, if your flight is cancelled (starting or ending in the EU/ EEA) different rights apply under EU rules (regulation (EC) 261/2004).

If your outbound flight is you are entitled to a refund of your ticket price or to rebook your flight for another date – which you would contact your flight company directly about.

If your return flight is under the flight company has a duty of care to you and is liable to provide accommodation and basic sustenance during your delay (even if it is due to an exceptional circumstance, such as ash clouds) and to provide an alternative flight.

Note that some travel insurance also cover incidental costs of such and if booked through Naturally Morocco we will usually be able to work with your accommodation to hold over your booking for an alternative holiday date (if outbound flight is cancelled).