Arrived at the station to find that my train has been delayed by at least an hour? Well it’s not all bad news – in cases like this, EU rules mean that I could be entitled to either an immediate refund if I cancel my travel plans or alternative transport at the earliest opportunity if not. If it’s a long wait, I might also be entitled to some refreshments to keep me going.
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MY JOURNEY. MY LIFE.
Get compensation if flights or train journeys are delayed, and get help in any EU country’s embassy abroad.
It may not be the fastest method of transport, but bus travel can help me to discover places off the beaten track. What’s more, operators are not allowed to charge me a higher price because of my nationality or the country I’m purchasing my ticket from. So whether I buy a ticket in Dublin or Dubrovnik, bus travel remains an affordable way to see Europe.
Stuck in the airport waiting for a delayed flight? I may have to postpone topping-up my vitamin D, but I could be entitled to assistance, reimbursement, or a return flight in the meantime. And if my flight arrives at the destination more than three hours late, then in certain circumstances I may be eligible for €250, €400, or €600 compensation, depending on the route, as a result.
If my journey is postponed until the next day, EU rules require every transport provider to provide me with a hotel, food and refreshments. So no need to worry about napping at the airport or train station – I can travel the following day instead, feeling rested and refreshed.
Is my plane staying firmly on the ground? If my flight is cancelled, then the EU may require the airline to reimburse me the price of my ticket. I can also catch another flight, or travel via a different airport. And if I’m halfway through my journey, I can catch a flight back to my original airport to take off another day.
It’s the holiday of a lifetime until…my wallet and passport are stolen. And to make things worse, my country doesn’t have an embassy in this part of the world. But as a citizen of the EU, I’m entitled to help from any EU embassy or consulate if my own country isn’t represented. Wherever I am in the world, my EU citizenship means I can get support quickly, and without hassle.
How it works
EU rules protect my rights in case of delays or cancellations I might experience when travelling. Whether I choose to travel by plane, train, boat, or bus, I’m entitled to be treated fairly – this includes providing compensation, reimbursements, rescheduling, or hotel accommodation. This doesn’t apply when disruption is caused by extraordinary circumstances – such as an air traffic controllers’ strike, political instability, security risks or extreme weather. However it does mean that for other delays, I’m safe and protected when travelling from or within the EU, or to the EU using an EU airline. Being an EU citizen means that I can ask for help from other EU countries when I need it. For instance, if I ever need protection or assistance abroad, and my country doesn’t have an embassy or consulate there.
Did you know
392 billion km
The total distance travelled by passengers on national rail networks in the EU in 2015.
The maximum amount of compensation I may receive from my airline if my luggage is damaged, providing I submit my claim within 7 days.
The number of EU citizens who live or travel in a country where their Member State does not have an embassy or consulate. This number is expected to rise to 10 million by 2020. Read more
0.15 planes in every 1,000,000 flights
were damaged beyond repair in 2014 – making Europe one of the safest places to fly in the world.
Compensation isn’t given automatically – it’s up to me to claim it! I should complain to my air carrier and, if I don’t receive a response, I can complain to my national authority. In certain circumstances I can use Alternative Dispute Resolution Entities or a court of law to settle my dispute.
Download the app
Travelling soon? Learn about my rights as a passenger before I take off with a swipe of my finger via the app. Read more
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How does the EU help you do what you love?
Ever dream of starting a business, studying abroad, or volunteering to help communities in need? And did you know the EU can support you in achieving all of these things? Discover everything the EU gives you to unlock your potential.