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Who Is Eligible for UK/EU Flight Compensation?

Who is eligible for UK/EU flight compensation?

Do you need to be European to get compensation? Are children and infants entitled to compensation as well? If your flight is eligible, every affected passenger – regardless of nationality, age, ticket price, or insurance – is entitled to European flight compensation. Compensation applies to situations like overbooking, significant delays, or last-minute cancellations. The requirement is that the disruption is due to the airline’s error.

Continue reading to learn more about your rights.

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Who Is Eligible for UK/EU Flight Compensation?

Who is eligible for UK/EU flight compensation?

Every affected passenger – regardless of nationality, age, ticket price, or insurance – is entitled to European flight compensation.

1. Non-Europeans

I’m not a European. Can I claim European flight delay compensation?

Yes, absolutely. If your flight is significantly delayed and you reach your destination at least 3 hours later than expected, you can claim European flight delay compensation regardless of your citizenship. The rules apply equally to all travellers, whether EU citizens or tourists visiting Europe.

The same applies to other EU flight compensation types – flight cancellation compensation, and flight overbooking compensation (i.e., compensation for denied boarding).

2. Infants and Children

Does my infant or child qualify for flight compensation?

Age doesn’t matter. Your child can also get EU flight compensation. The rules under EU Flight Compensation Regulation 261/2004 apply to everyone equally. If there’s a significant flight delay, overbooking or cancellation and you’re eligible for compensation, your child is too. This includes infants travelling without a reserved seat.

Adults and children receive the same compensation amount: €250, €400 or €600. The amount depends on the distance of the flight.

Learn more: UK/EU Flight Compensation for Babies and Children

3. People Without Travel Insurance

I don’t have travel insurance. Can I get compensation from the airline?

Yes, you can still get flight compensation. The EU/UK flight compensation rules (Regulation 261/2004 and Regulation UK261) are designed to protect passengers regardless of their insurance status. If you experience a flight disruption such as a delay, cancellation, or overbooking, and the cause is within the airline’s control, you are entitled to compensation.

4. Passengers on Low-Cost Airlines

I’m flying with a low-cost airline. Am I eligible for compensation? Low-cost airlines also have to follow EU Regulations, correct?

Yes, you can get compensation. As a passenger traveling on a low-cost airline, you are equally protected under the EU Flight Compensation Regulation 261/2004. The regulation does not discriminate based on the type of airline, meaning that whether you are flying on a budget carrier or a full-service airline, your rights remain the same. If you face disruptions such as a flight delay, cancellation, or overbooking, and it results from the airline’s fault, you are entitled to compensation. The goal of the regulation is to ensure all passengers receive fair treatment and are compensated for the inconvenience, regardless of the cost of their ticket or the airline they chose.

Low-cost airlines must adhere to the same standards and provide the same level of recompense as any other carrier in the EU.

5. Travellers With Discounted or Cheap Flight Tickets

Can I get compensation if my flight ticket was cheap?

Absolutely, the cost of your flight ticket does not affect your right to compensation under the EU Flight Compensation Regulation 261/2004. This regulation ensures that all passengers are entitled to compensation for flight disruptions such as delays, cancellations, or overbookings that are within the airline’s control, irrespective of how much they paid for their ticket. Whether you purchased a bargain ticket during a sale, used frequent flyer miles, or booked a last-minute cheap flight, your compensation rights remain intact.

Learn more: Can You Get Compensation if Your Flight Ticket Was Cheap?

6. Passengers on Certain Non-European Airline Flights

You might already know that passengers are safeguarded on all UK and EU airline flights, irrespective of their point of origin or final destination.

But you are protected on some non-European airline flights, too!

For non-European airlines, passenger protection applies to flights originating from European airports. If you are flying with Qatar Airways, Turkish Airlines, Delta, Emirates or other non-European airline (including low-cost airlines like Pegasus), and your flight is disrupted due to the airline’s fault, you may be entitled to compensation. Good news, right?

Woman waiting at an airport

Understanding EU Regulation 261/2004 & UK261: A Quick Overview

In Europe, two regulations protect air passenger rights: EU Regulation 261/2004 and Regulation UK261. These regulations are almost identical, with the main difference being the currency for compensation.

You are protected if:

  • Your flight is delayed by 3+ hours.
  • Your flight is cancelled 0-14 days before departure (last-minute flight cancellation).
  • You are denied boarding due to overbooking.

Condition: It must be the airline’s fault, for example technical problems or airline staff strike.

The amount of compensation varies depending on the length of your flight. In most situations, you can receive 250, 400 or 600 euros per passenger.

To claim compensation from the airline, you have two options: file a complaint directly with the airline or get assistance from a third-party service (flight compensation company). We suggest using a flight compensation company for a simple and hassle-free experience.

When choosing this option, here is all you will have to do:

Go to
this page

Fill in a claim form

Upload documents*

Sign online

And that’s it — the rest is handled by professionals.

* Your boarding pass and passport or ID copy.

Learn more:

By Europe, European Union and EU here on this website we mean all EU Member States, the United Kingdom (UK), Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Martinique, Reunion, Mayotte, Saint Martin (French Antilles), the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, Iceland, Norway, and Switzerland. This is where these European regulations work.

Do you have questions about who is eligible for UK/EU flight compensation? Or questions about your rights as a European air passenger? Feel free to ask in the comments.

Featured photo by Aliaksei Lepik from Pexels

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