Cancelled or delayed flights? Here's how to act and ask for reimbursement!

Traveling is a magical experience, we all know that. Fabio and I saw wonderful places and met incredible people. But, unfortunately, there are times when even dream travel can turn into a nightmare, especially when we are faced with canceled flights or delays that exceed three hours. After some research but especially gathering your personal experiences, we decided to write this article to help you in case this kind of mishap occurs to you!

Let’s start with the question we need to ask ourselves before embarking on this journey into the world of reimbursement. 🙂

  • When am I entitled to a refund for the cancellation, delay of more than 3 hours, overbooking, etc. of my flight?European EC Regulation 261/04 on Passenger Rights is not limited to protecting you in case of flight cancellation. It goes much further, offering coverage even for significant delays, missed connections due to airline mishaps, and in case of overbooking.

The regulation applies to those departing from or landing at EU airports, provided the airline is European and the cause of the problem is their responsibility.
The process of obtaining reimbursement can sometimes be very complicated if one has no knowledge of how to proceed, which competent body to contact, how to contact the airlines, what documentation to fill out, and who to send it to.

  • So what to do and who to turn to in these situations?The most practical and recommended way is to go straight to the website of the airline concerned by looking for the section on refunds, cancellations and delays, assistance, etc. In most cases as so many of you have told me, you can work it out directly with them without any problems! You will still have to do some research to find the right page and from of each airline. I looked up Ryanair’s for you:

In some cases, however, difficulties may arise by approaching the companies directly. Endless waiting times, delays, and even sometimes untrue creative excuses to completely avoid giving you a refund are the most common cases where many people find it difficult to continue!

But don’t worry friends, here are some great solutions that have already been tried out and have worked great, allowing you to not only get a full refund, but in some cases even more than you expected.

Here is a list of specialized agencies that can help you.


This is the number one choice according to your personal experiences! With AirHelp, the possibility of getting a refund becomes very quick and easy.I will leave the link here.

Other excellent mentions should be made of:

Thanks to one of their friends you will see that you will be able to get a refund for your flight cancelled or delayed for more than 3 hours. However, let’s look at some of your direct testimonies and cases in which these agencies have proven to be super effective.

  1. I have relied on Airhelp a couple of times and have gotten refunds even on a few figures.
  2. AirHelpQuick and accurate, I didn’t even understand how you did it and yet I am a lawyer !
  3. SOS flight fantastic… Only 1 registered mail 5 euro refund without charge of 700
  4. ITALIAR REIMBURSEMENT. EN Professional and prompt in refunding my flight
  5. Refund on the fly. I am a lawyer but I relied on them and I assure you they are much faster! I received 250€ for landing in a different place due to bad weather!

In short, if you don’t have the skills or time to start the practice yourself, don’t overthink it and rely on them! Let’s get a little more specific and see some of the most frequently asked questions and answers about this!

  • Do I have rights if I miss a connecting flight?
    YES – if the flights are part of a single reservation and you arrive at your final destination 3 hours or more late, and the delay is not due to extraordinary circumstances, you are entitled to compensation.
  • My flight is supposed to leave from Milan this morning, but I just got a message from the airline saying that the flight has been canceled. Do I have rights?
    YES – you have rights according to EU standards. You are entitled to a refund of the full cost of your ticket for the portion of the trip not taken or to re-routing (a new flight to understand) at the first opportunity. If you are already at the airport and opt to accept the newly offered flight, you are also entitled to meals and drinks in proportion to your waiting time, and two phone calls, text messages or e-mails. You are also entitled to an overnight stay if you are rerouted the day after your scheduled flight and, depending on the circumstances, financial compensation.
  • If the plane has a technical defect, can it be considered as “extraordinary circumstances”?
    NO – a technical problem that emerges during normal aircraft maintenance or is caused by failure to maintain an aircraft properly cannot be considered as “extraordinary circumstances.”
    YES-if the technical defect is related to an incident that was not caused by the normal activity of the airlines and is beyond their control due to its nature or origin.
  • Am I only entitled to compensation for flights that were canceled or can I get compensation for delayed flights as well?
    Both. With cancelled/delayed flights, you will not receive compensation if the cancellation/delay is due to extraordinary circumstances, such as bad weather. Where the cancellation/delay is due to extraordinary circumstances, you may not be entitled to compensation, but the airline must still offer you assistance (reimbursement or re-routing) and assistance (meals and/or lodging) while you wait for alternate transportation.
  • We had booked a flight to Venice, but the airline changed the destination of our flight and we landed in Bologna. We had to arrange our own transportation to Venice. What are our rights?
    Under EU rules, a flight that has been diverted to another airport, which does not serve the same city, country or region as the airport for which the reservation was made, must be treated as a cancelled flight. You have the same rights as in the case of a flight cancellation; in addition, you can claim the costs incurred in getting to Venice.

If you would like to get an even more complete picture, I leave you with the link to the official European passenger rights website:

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