Don't miss out! Join the thousands of people who subscribe to our once-daily email or our free miles and points Facebook group with all the best travel news. Some links on this page may pay me a commission - as always, thanks for your support if you use them
If you’ve been reading along, you know that my recent trip to Europe was marred by the fact that my initial flight to Dublin was canceled
While going through the rebooking process, my philosophy was that I wanted to concentrate on GETTING to Europe, and then I’d figure out how to get compensation for my canceled (and ultimately downgraded) flight. I didn’t want to do something to my ticket (like refund or cancel it) and find out that all of a sudden I didn’t have ANY ticket to get to Europe
Submitting an EU261 compensation claim
EU261 is a resolution passed by the European Union back in 2005, laying out a specific formula for compensation for passengers whose flights are delayed or canceled. In my case, because my flight was 2993 miles (4817 kilometers), my flight is considered a “Level 3” flight, and so the EU261 compensation is at the highest level.
EU261 is applicable for any carrier flagshipped in the European Union OR if you are flying from the European Union OR if you are flying TO the European Union (but only on an EU-based carrier). In my case, we were flying to Dublin on Aer Lingus, so I qualified for EU261 compensation on both counts
As I understand it, a Level 3 flight that was canceled or delayed more than 4 hours is subject to €600 per person.
Form to submit an EU261 compensation claim
When I got back into the USA and ready to submit my EU261 compensation claim, it took me a little time to figure out how exactly to submit my EU261 compensation claim. There are several different websites out there that will submit your EU261 compensation claim and follow up on it with you for a percentage of your EU261 compensation (usually around 25%). My plan was to use one of these sites if I had to, but to try and do it by myself to get the full amount of EU261 compensation for myself!
I’ll share what I did and if you have any suggestions, leave them in the comments
To submit an EU261 compensation claim, you have to send in your documentation to the airline in question. I used this online form (PDF) from the official online site of the European Commission.
Where to submit your EU261 compensation claim
Some airlines have online forms where you can submit your EU261 compensation claim (here’s Ryanair’s EU261 compensation claim form). I was looking to file an Aer Lingus EU261 compensation claim, and I did not initially see where to submit my EU261 compensation claim. I did read reports that the Aer Lingus EU261 address is
Aer Lingus Limited,
Head Office Building,
But before I just mailed something to a black box somewhere in Ireland, I thought I would check if there was an online way to do it. I reached out to @AerLingus on Twitter
(SEE ALSO: List of Airline and Hotel Twitter contacts) and they responded with
— Aer Lingus (@AerLingus) September 28, 2015
So I submitted my EU261 compensation claim through that online Aer Lingus form, and we shall see how that goes!
(5/14/18 – UPDATE: Read here for the final resolution of this EU261 compensation claim)
Any tips or suggestions (or war stories!) of submitting an EU261 compensation claim? Leave them in the comments!