15.02.2021

Air passenger rights around the world

In the EU you are protected, but what about the rest of the world?

Yes, when it comes to your rights, in the European Union these things are very well regulated. The best part being that for most part the rules regarding air passenger rights are the same in all EU countries. The only real difference is the time limit. While in Latvia you can claim compensation for flights only up to 6 months old, in many other countries it’s 2 or 3 years. But, yes, what about the rest of the world?

In many countries it depends only from the airline's policy.

While in others there is something similar to what we have in the EU.

Check your compensation online (if your flight was from or to the EU)!

Or continue reading to learn more about your rights.

Air passenger rights around the world

The good thing is that you are protected not only in the EU.

There are a few other countries around the globe which offer protection for their air passengers. Continue reading this summary to learn more about them.

Beach town

Air passenger rights in Turkey

In Turkey there is the SHY-Passenger Regulation.

In many aspects it's very similar to European Regulation (EC) No 261/2004. Thanks to this regulation, when travelling to and from Turkey you are protected against delays, cancellations, and denied boarding.

There are also specific rules regarding downgrades.

In case of delays and cancellations it gives you a right to care.

If your flight is delayed, you can ask for a refund. If the delay of an international flight is longer than 5 hours, passengers are entitled to a refund. On domestic flights passengers can get a refund if a flight is delayed for more than 1 hour.

If the delay is long, you have a right to care.

In case of delays lasting for eight hours and over, the airline must provide you with free accommodation and free transfer to accommodation. If you are not allowed into the country due to border regulations, your airline must offer you a free stay at an airpot hotel, if there’s one.

If your flight is cancelled, you can get compensation. Unlike what we have in the European Union, in Turkey this applies only to last-minute flight cancellations. And only when cancellation is not caused by extraordinary circumstances, like extreme weather conditions or security issues.

If you are denied boarding, you can get compensation.

Only if it's due to overbooking.

The amounts of compensation are as following:

  • €100 - for all domestic flights;
  • €250 - if the distance of your flight is up to 1500 kilometres;
  • €400 - if the distance of your flight is between 1500 - 3500 kilometres;
  • €600 - if the distance of your flight is more than 3500 kilometres.

Source: www.istairport.com/en/

Kiev, Ukraine

Air passenger rights in Ukraine

In Ukraine you are almost as protected as in the EU.

When flying to or from Ukraine and if your flight is cancelled, you can get compensation. If your flight is delayed and you have to wait long at the airport you have a right either to free food or both free food and free accommodation. In some situations you can also ask for a full refund that must be paid to your bank account.

You have a right to care if your flight is delayed for:

  • 2 hours or more for flights of up to 1500 km;
  • 3 hours or more for flights of 1500 – 3500 km;
  • 4 hours or more for longer flights.

The airline should provide you with food and drink vouchers.

If the delay is longer — free accommodation and transfer.

If the delay is 5+ hours, you can ask for a full refund.

If your flight is cancelled, you can get compensation.

In some situations you will be entitled to up to 600 euro. You will be entitled to compensation only if the reason of it is something that could be considered airline’s fault, not something out of their control (often called extraordinary circumstances). And only if you are notified of it less than 2 weeks prior to the estimated departure.

But there are a few exceptions.

You can’t get compensation if:

  • You were informed of the cancellation 7 – 13 days prior to the estimated departure; you chose a new flight offered by your airline, which departed not more than 2 hours after the original departure time and you reached your destination less than 4 hours after the original arrival time.
  • You were notified of the cancellation less than 7 days before the scheduled time of departure; you chose a new flight offered by your airline, which departed not more than 1 hour after the original departure time and you reached your destination less than 2 hours after the original arrival time.

In other situations you can get flight cancellation compensation.

The amounts of the compensation are as following:

  • If the distance of the flight is 1500 km or less – €250;
  • If the distance is between 1500 - 3500 km – €400;
  • If the distance is over 3500 km – €600.

The amount may be reduced by 50%, if you are offered a new flight.

If your flight is cancelled, you can also request a refund.

When a flight is cancelled, you must be offered a new flight to your destination. If you don't wish to fly anymore, you can also request a refund or a return trip to the airport of origin.

Source: kbp.aero/en/pass/delay/

Aerial view of Rio de Janeiro

Air passenger rights in Brazil

In Brazil you are protected by the ANAC Resolution 400.

It covers all commercial flights to, from or within Brazil. According to this resolution, you are protected against flight delays, cancellations, and denied boarding.

Whenever you have to wait, you have a right to care.

If your flight is delayed for even 1 hour, you are entitled to assistance from the airline — the airline must provide you with access to means of communication. In some situations it will be a call, in other - access to WiFi.

If the delay is 2+ hours, you are entitled to food and drinks.

If the delay is 4+ hours, you are entitled to an alternative flight or flights to your destination. If you will have to wait overnight for your new flight, the airline should also provide you with free hotel stay. If the hotel isn’t at the airport or very close by, free transportation to and from the hotel should be provided.

If it isn’t offered and you have to deal with that yourself, you can later claim compensation for the inconvenience.

You can claim up to 1300 USD per person.

If you are denied boarding, you can get compensation.

Plus, you must be offered a new flight to your destination.

But that includes only situations when you are denied boarding because of overbooking — if the airline has sold more tickets than there are seats. In these situations you will be entitled to compensation of around 350 USD for domestic flights, and about 700 USD for international flights. If you give up your seat seat voluntarily, they are not entitled to a compensation.

Changes in flight schedule. If there’s any changes in flight schedule or itinerary, the airline must inform their passengers at least 72 hours before the original flight time. If the airline fails to do so, it must offer a new flight or full refund. The airline must also provide a new flight or a full refund if the change in schedule is of more than 30 minutes for national flights and 1 hour for international flights.

Source: www.anac.gov.br/en

Canadian flag

Air passenger rights in Canada

Everyone travelling to, from and within Canada is protected against delays, cancellations, denied boarding and tarmac delays. If the reason of delay is within the airline's control, all passengers are entitled to the minimum standards of treatment and compensation.

If the airline did not notify you of a flight delay or cancellation at least 12 hours before the planned departure time, the airline must provide you with:

  • food and drinks;
  • access to means of communication;
  • free accommodation and free transportation to and from this accommodation, if you have to wait overnight for your new flight.

It applies only to situations when it’s fault of the airline.

If it isn’t fault of the airline, you will not be entitled to any of that.

In some situations you will also be entitled to compensation.

If you are informed of the delay or cancellation less than 2 weeks in advance:

  • For a delay of 3 to 6 hours, a passenger receives C$400. Small airlines must pay 125;
  • For a delay of 6 to 9 hours, a passenger receives C$700. Small airlines must pay 250;
  • For a delay of 9 hours or more, a passenger receives C$1000. Small airlines must pay 500.

It applies also to denied boarding due to overbooking.

If you are denied boarding for a reason that is within the airline's control, the airline must pay out compensation. For a delay of 0-6 hours a passenger who was been denied boarding can receive C$900; for 6-9 hour delay - C$1800; for 9 or more hour delay - C$2400.

Source: otc-cta.gc.ca

People on the streets in India

Air passenger rights in India

In India air passengers rights are protected by APAI.

Established in 1990, APAI (Air Passengers Association of India) is a non-profit organisation focusing on the rights and well-being of air passengers. Thanks to this organisation, there are rules that apply to all airlines operating in India, and they are the same for all of them.

Whenever you have to wait, you have a right to care.

If the delay is short, you may have a right to free food and drinks. Complimentary meals and drinks must be provided by an airline to all passengers who have checked in on time and have:

  • A flight with a block time of 2.5 hours and a delay of 2 or more hours;
  • A flight with a block time of 2.5 – 5 hours and a delay of 3 or more hours;
  • A long flight which was delayed for more than 4 hours.

If the delay is longer than 24 hours — free hotel room and transfers.

If the flight is expected to be delayed by more than 6 hours, rescheduled time should be communicated to you more than 24 hours prior to original scheduled departure time. The airline must offer an alternate flight within a period of 6 hours or full refund.

If your flight is cancelled, you have a right to refund.

If you are informed of the cancellation 2 weeks prior to scheduled departure time, the airline must provide you with a new ticket or a full refund. If you are informed less than 2 weeks and up to 24 hours prior to scheduled departure time, the airline must book you a new flight (for free) with a departure time within 2 hours of the scheduled departure time of the cancelled flight.

If you haven’t been informed of anything, you are eligible to a refund.

What if you are denied boarding due to overbooking? Anytime that happens you will be entitled to denied boarding compensation. The amount of the compensation depends on the the length of the delay — how much later you reach your final destination; since every time you are denied boarding due to overbooking, you are also offered a new flight to your destination.

Source: apai.in

Haifa, Israel

Air passenger rights in Israel

In Israel you are protected against cancellations and overbooking.

All thanks to Israeli Aviation Services Law (IASL). Just like in other countries around the world, it applies only as long as it’s fault of your airline, not extraordinary circumstances.

If your flight is cancelled, you can get compensation.

That is, if the flight is cancelled less than 2 weeks before the date of departure. The amount of compensation depends on the length of your flight - if it’s up to 2000 km, between 2000 to 4500 km or over 4500 kilometers.

If you are denied boarding, you can get compensation.

If everything is in order with your documents, and you are denied boarding due to overbooking — you will be entitled to compensation. The amount of compensation depends on the length of your flight and how much later have you reached your final destination.

Source: www.elal.com

New York, USA

Air passenger rights in the USA

In the United States, airlines are not required to compensate passengers in case of flight delay and cancellations. However, compensation is required by law when there’s an overbooking, and the passengers are denied boarding. Unless a passenger hasn’t surrendered their seat voluntarily — in this case the passenger is not entitled to a compensation.

The amount of compensation depends on:

  • The price of the ticket;
  • Whether the flight was international or domestic;
  • The length of the delay.

Even though compensation is not required by the U.S. law, each airline has its own policies about what amenities it will offer to the delayed passengers. If your flight is experiencing a long delay, contact the airline to find out, if you can get a free meal and / or hotel accommodation.

If your flight is delayed, you may try to switch to a different flight, if it is possible. Prior to switching to a different flight, find out if there’s a fee for changing your reservation. If your flight is significantly delayed, in some situations you may be entitled to a refund. Contact the airline to find out about this possibility.

You should be notified of any changes, if your flight departs within 7 days.

Source: www.transportation.gov

Finnair airplane at the airport

Air passenger rights in the European Union

As already mentioned, in the EU you are very well protected.

Plus, the rules are almost identical in all EU countries.

It applies to flights from and to the European Union.

Learn more about your rights in the EU:

Safe travels!


By Europe and EU we mean all EU Member States, Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Martinique, Reunion, Mayotte, Saint Martin (French Antilles), the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, Iceland, Norway, and Switzerland.