Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Do we still have time to claim after suffering 24-hour flight delay two years ago?
Every day our travel guru answers your travel questions
Simon Calder’s career in travel started at Gatwick Airport, where he cleaned aircraft for Laker Airways and later worked as a security officer. He became The Independent’s Travel Correspondent in 1994, and is known as “the Man Who Pays His Way” because he does not accept free travel facilities. He writes across the Independent titles, as well as for the Evening Standard.
Friday 18 January 2013
Q. Two years ago we had a 24-hour delay on returning from Dominican Republic. We emailed Thomson but they did not offer any compensation. Have we still time to claim? I do not have any paperwork but have entry and exit date-stamps in my passport to show we left after 15 days.
A. Thanks to a court judgement late last year, claims for flight delays of three hours or more can go back six years, to 2007. The law applies to all flights operated by EU-based airlines, so you should be able to claim – unless Thomson Airways can demonstrate there were no “extraordinary circumstances” that it could not have anticipated. The company supplies a standard form for delayed passengers to complete. It stresses that claimants must supply the original flight tickets, but when I took it up with the company, it confirmed that other forms of proof are acceptable.
The CAA produces a useful guide here, including a standard letter to make it easier: bit.ly/CAAhelp
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