Denied boarding compensation

It’s important to know air passenger rights, especially in cases when the airline doesn’t let you board your flight, even when you haven’t done anything wrong. Here you will find suggestions on what to do if you were denied to board your flight.

Less than 1 hour
More than 5 hours

Denied boarding on EU flights

If your flight is overbooked or you’re denied boarding, you may receive from 250 to 600 in compensation, under EU Regulation EC 261. Follow these steps to preserve your rights for compensation and refund:

  • Don’t volunteer to give up your seat for vouchers or perks. By volunteering, you may waive your rights to any additional compensation. However, the airline’s offer might be compelling enough — it’s your choice.
  • Keep your boarding pass and any other travel documents. You can also use any flight document where the booking reference number is provided if you don’t have a boarding pass. The booking reference number is assigned to your flight reservation by the airline — a six-digit code with characters and numbers.
  • Find out why you’re being denied boarding. Despite the most common reason for being “bumped” due to an overbooked flight, there might be other reasons for being denied boarding, so it is worth asking the airline staff. It will be important if you decide to file a claim.
  • Keep your receipts if you have additional expenses due to being denied boarding. You may receive reimbursement for your expenses such as pre-paid reservation, hotel, rental car, or other unexpected costs.
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Flight from Sweden to UK
Airplane flying above city

Your rights on EU flights

If you’re being denied boarding, you have rights such as asking the airline for an alternative flight, compensation, reimbursement of expenses, and accommodation.

  • Ask for an alternate flight to your destination. If you decided to change your journey plans, you may request a refund of your fare and a return flight to your original point of departure.
  • Request for denied boarding compensation. The airline must compensate you for boarding denial immediately at the airport if you are eligible for compensation. Compensation for being denied boarding is in addition to re-routing or refund mentioned above.
  • Request the airline to cover your meals and refreshments. If you have to wait at the airport longer than planned, the airline must provide you with snacks and refreshments under EU Regulation EC 261.
  • Request the airline to provide you with accommodation. If you have to wait for your alternative flight overnight, the airline should provide you with hotel accommodation and transportation from and to the airport or cover your expenses for these necessities.
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Denied boarding on international flights

Passengers who travel on international flights can claim a refund of their expenses due to boarding denials, it is important to follow these steps:

  • Don’t volunteer to give up your seat for vouchers or perks. By volunteering, you may waive your rights to any additional compensation. However, the airline’s offer might be compelling enough — it’s your choice.
  • Keep your boarding pass and any other travel documents. You can also use any flight document where the booking reference number is provided if you don’t have a boarding pass. The booking reference number is assigned to your flight reservation by the airline – a six-digit code with characters and numbers.
  • Find out the reason why you’re being denied boarding. Despite the most common reason for being “bumped” due to an overbooked flight, there might be other reasons for being denied boarding, so it is worth asking the airline staff. It will be important if you decide to file a claim.
  • Request for an alternate flight to your destination.
  • Keep your receipts if you have additional expenses due to boarding denial. You may receive reimbursement for your expenses such as pre-paid reservation, hotel, rental car, or other unexpected costs.
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Flight from Europe to US

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