Rights in the event of a cancelled flight

Last updated 24/08/2021
If your flight has been cancelled, you are entitled to a refund of the full cost of the flight ticket or to be re-routed to another flight. In some cases you may also be entitled to compensation.

What are you entitled to in the event of flight cancellation?

Last updated 24/08/2021

If your flight has been cancelled, you are entitled to choose whether you wish to have your flight ticket refunded or have your trip rebooked.

 

If you choose to rebook your trip, you are also entitled to reasonable care (meals and refreshments – non-alcoholic) while you wait for the next available flight departure. 

If an overnight stay proves necessary as a result of the rebooking, the air carrier must also offer you hotel accommodation as well as transportation between the hotel and airport.

If the air carrier fails to offer you reasonable care while waiting for your rebooked flight, you may purchase meals and refreshments yourself and subsequently claim a refund for your purchases from the air carrier.

Remember to keep the receipts for your purchases so you can document your expenses to the air carrier.

 

If cancellation is not announced 14 days before departure

If you have not been informed of the cancellation at least two weeks before the scheduled time of departure you may be entitled to compensation. This does not apply, however, if the cancellation is caused by extraordinary circumstances such as bad weather, some forms of industrial action, manufacturing defects on the aircraft or air traffic controller restrictions.

 

If the cancellation is due to COVID-19 measures

If your flight has been cancelled due to COVID-19 measures, you are entitled to a refund but not compensation. You can read more about your rights here:

About compensation

As a passenger, you may be entitled to the following compensation amounts:

 

Within the EU:

  • 250 euro for flights under 1500 km
  • 400 euro for flights over 1500 km



Outside the EU:

 

  • 250 euro for flights under 1500 km
  • 400 euro for flights between 1500 km and 3500 km
  • 600 euro for flights over 3500 km

In certain instances, the air carrier may reduce your compensation by 50 % if you are rebooked on another flight. This depends on how far you are travelling and how quickly you arrive there.

Do you want to file a complaint regarding your flight?

You must first contact the air carrier. If you have not heard from the air carrier within six weeks or if you are dissatisfied with the air carrier's decision, you may have your complaint processed by the authority in the EU country where the incident occurred.

FAQs on flight cancellations

Last updated 24/08/2021
Below you will find answers to the most frequent questions about flight cancellations.

What applies if your flight or trip has been cancelled due to COVID-19?

If such is the case, you should contact the air carrier to be rebooked to another departure, or to have your ticket refunded. Rebooking will in most cases not be possible due to the current circumstances. You have the right to have a ticket refunded upon cancellation, which means that you’re not obligated to accept a voucher if the air carrier offers you such compensation. 

 

However, you can choose to accept a voucher instead of having your ticket refunded. If you’re considering this, it would be advantageous for you to investigate which terms and conditions apply to the air carrier's vouchers, including what security you have if the air carrier goes bankrupt.

 

The air carrier will not be liable for other expenses you may have incurred from separate bookings, such as hotel/accommodation, rental car, etc. You should consult your travel insurance if you have one.

The Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority is not able to process a complaint if the passenger has cancelled the ticket themselves. In accordance with Regulation (EC) 261/2004 passenger rights only apply if the air carrier cancels the flight. In this regard, it is insignificant whether the passenger has cancelled the ticket because of instructions from the air carrier. 

 

The Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority urges passengers not to cancel their tickets themselves if they wish to keep their right to a refund, cf. Regulation (EC) 261/2004. Furthermore, the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority has called upon the air carriers to clearly inform the passengers about the consequences of passengers cancelling their tickets themselves.

 

In case you, as a passenger, have cancelled your ticket because of the information given by an air carrier, you may consider contacting Center for Klageløsning who has other possibilities for dealing with consumer aspects. 

The Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority has issued an order against 12 air carriers. The order requires the air carriers to make a refund to the passengers before November 15 and December 1.

 

The Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority has issued an order to the following air carriers: Aegean Airlines, Air France, Brussels Airlines, easyJet, KLM, Lufthansa, Norweigan, Ryanair, Scandinavian Airline Systems (SAS), TAP Portugal, Thai Airways and Vueling. 

 

In case you have a complaint regarding a refund with one of the mentioned air carriers, you should expect to receive your refund soon and therefore you do not need to submit a complaint to the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority.

 

If you receive your refund before the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority has made a decision in your case, kindly inform the Authority regarding the payment so your case can be closed by the Authority. 

Regulation (EC) 261/2004 regulates the air carrier's responsibility and obligations. Ticket providers, also known as Online Travel Agencies (OTA), are not covered by the regulation (EC) 261/2004.

 

When purchasing a ticket through a ticket provider you should be aware that you may experience difficulties in receiving a refund for an unused ticket.

 

In accordance with Regulation (EC) 261/2004 it is the air carrier that is obliged to refund your ticket. However, the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority is aware of the fact that there can be some ambiguities between the ticket provider and the air carrier with the result that it can be unclear who to approach in order to receive the refund.

 

In case you have purchased your ticket through a ticket provider, you must be aware that the ticket provider may charge an additional fee for their service. This fee may be deducted from the amount you get refunded.

 

The Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority is aware of the challenges that may occur with the ticket provider. The Authority is currently working with other authorities to clarify the liability of the ticket provider in regard to air passenger rights.

 

To avoid the potential challenges that lies with purchasing tickets with ticket providers, you can choose to purchase tickets directly with the air carrier.
 
If you experience challenges with the ticket provider, you can contact Forbruger Europa or Center for Klageløsning.
If you’ve booked a trip including both flight and accommodation, you can contact pakkerejseankenævnet for reimbursement of the total amount. You’ll find their contact information at the link below.

The air carrier may direct you to the travel agency or third-party provider through which you made your booking and it can be a good idea to start your complaint there.

 

However, in accordance with EU 261/2004 it is the air carrier that is obliged to refund your ticket.

 

If the travel agency or third-party provider does not pay the refund, you must submit your claim to the obliged party – the air carrier.

 

Please note that your inquiry with the air carrier should be made in writing, as you must be able to document your inquiry when you register a complaint with the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority. You must allow the air carrier 6 weeks to respond to your inquiry.

 

The air carrier companies are obliged to refund your flight ticket if you request it. Therefore, a practice of only offering vouchers is not in accordance with the regulations applicable in this field.

 

Several air carriers have begun to take action to make vouchers more attractive. Thus, it may be that an air carrier offers you a compensation amount, such as a bonus or gift voucher, in addition to the value of the flight ticket, in order to make you accept the voucher. The air carrier is legally allowed to do this. If you’re considering this, it would be advantageous for you to investigate which terms and conditions apply to the air carrier's vouchers, including what security you have if the air carrier goes bankrupt.

 

If you do not wish to receive a voucher, you must notify the air carrier that you want the flight ticket refunded in full. If the air carrier refuses to refund the flight ticket, you can file a complaint with the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority.

If you accepted a voucher without the air carrier informing you of your rights for a refund, you are eligible for a conversion of the voucher to a refund. In that case you should contact the air carrier in order to ask for a conversion.

 

If the company informed you of your rights for a refund, but you choose the voucher the air carrier is not obliged to convert your voucher.

If the air carrier doesn’t want to convert your voucher you can contact the authority from the country the flight was to depart from. 

The air carrier will not be liable for other expenses you may have incurred from separate bookings, such as hotel/accommodation, rental car, etc. You should consult your travel insurance if you have one.
You cannot get compensation for e.g. delays if the delay is due to Covid-19, as it is considered that this is an extraordinary circumstance that does not oblige the air carrier to pay compensation. 

If the air carrier does not respond to your inquiry within six weeks, you can file a complaint to the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority. Please note that the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority can only deal with complaints if the cancelled flight was scheduled to depart:

 

  • From a Danish airport or
  • From an airport in a non-EU/non-EEA country directly to a Danish airport with an air carrier registered in the EU 

As a result of the corona crisis and the many cancelled flights, air carriers are currently receiving many inquiries, and many air carriers have been forced to lay-off their staff. Therefore, it may take longer than under normal circumstances for the air carrier to respond to your inquiry. We recommend that you arm yourself with patience.

In general, the air carrier must pay your refund within seven days. However, due to the current situation, it is recommended that you arm yourself with patience. You can file a complaint to the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority if the air carrier does not respond to your inquiry within six weeks. 

There are currently many air carriers receiving many inquiries and many of these air carriers have been forced to lay-off their staff. Therefore, it may take longer than under normal circumstances for the air carrier to respond to your inquiry.

If the air carrier goes bankrupt, you must file your claim to the bankruptcy estate, whether it is a claim for a due refund or a claim for cash conversion of a voucher.

You will also have the opportunity to have your plane tickets covered by the Travel Guarantee Fund, if the departure was scheduled to/from a Danish airport. However, this does not apply to domestic flights. There will be a deductible of DKK 1,000. The fund does not cover vouchers in the event of bankruptcy.

 

If you have purchased your ticket with a Mastercard or Visacard you can contact your bank in order to apply for a refund. Note that this does not apply to a Danish “Dankort”.


If the company does not cancel the flight, you will not be able to refund your ticket as you have no statutory right to cancellation. In such cases, you must contact your insurance company to consult your options.

Some taxes and fees are only charged if you use the air carrier ticket, and under such circumstances you have the right to have them reimbursed. These are typically taxes and fees paid to the government and the airport. Please note that the seller has the right to charge a fee of DKK 100 per air carrier ticket when you request a refund for taxes and fees.

In case you have purchased your ticket through a ticket provider, you must be aware that the ticket provider may charge an additional fee for their service in connection with refunding your tickets. This fee may be deducted from the amount you get refunded.

 

In case of cancellation, the air carrier shall refund the full ticket amount. Therefore, they are not allowed to charge a fee for the reimbursement.

In general, the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority's case handling time is 3 to 6 months. However, there are currently a large number of cases which can lead to protracted handling times.

 

As a part of the The Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority's case management process, the individual complaints must be submitted to the air carrier in order for them to respond to the claim.

 

Following the current special circumstances, we recommend that you are patient regarding the processing of your case.

 

Furthermore, the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority has issued an order against 12 air carriers.

 

In case you have a complaint regarding non-payment of refund with one of following air carriers, you should expect to receive your refund soon and therefore, you do not need to submit a complaint to the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority. 

 

The Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority has issued an order to the following air carriers: Aegean Airlines, Air France, Brussels Airlines, easyJet, KLM, Lufthansa, Norweigan, Ryanair, Scandinavian Airline Systems (SAS), TAP Portugal, Thai Airways and Vueling. 

 

The order requires the air carriers to pay the refund to the passengers before November 15 and December 1. This applies regardless of whether you have a complaint with the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority or not.

 

If you receive your refund before the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority has made a decision in your case, kindly inform the Authority regarding the payment so your case can be closed by the Authority. 

You can file your complaint via the following link:

Please note that the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority can only accept complaints where the relevant cancellation departs:

 

  • From a Danish airport or 
  • From an airport in a non-EU/non-EEA country directly to a Danish airport with an air carrier registered in the EU 
 

The Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority will initially screen your complaint to make sure all necessary information is included. In case any information is missing, you will be contacted by the Authority. 

 

If the Authority finds that you may have a claim towards the air carrier, the Authority will submit your complaint to the air carrier. The air carrier may then respond with their view on the matter. The air carrier may forward information of technical nature, e.g. weather reports etc. 

 

The Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority is obliged to make sure that all relevant information is included in the assessment, on grounds of which the Authority will make a decision.

General questions regarding cancellation

If you are notified of the flight cancellation less than 14 days before the scheduled time  of departure, you may be entitled to compensation, unless the cancellation is caused by extraordinary circumstances such as bad weather, certain types of industrial action, manufacturing defects or flight controller restrictions.

If you have chosen to rebook your trip, your right to compensation depends on when your new flight departs and when you arrive at your destination.
Package travels are regulated by the Danish Package Travel Act and not by the EU Regulation. The Authority therefore recommends you to contact your travel agency regarding your rights in connection with a flight cancellation.

If you have chosen to rebook your flight due to a cancellation and the air carrier fails to offer you reasonable care while waiting for your rebooked flight, you may purchase meals and refreshments (non-alcoholic) yourself and subsequently claim a refund for your purchases from the air carrier. 

You may also get a refund for reasonable expenses for hotel accommodation and transport to/from the hotel if an overnight stay was necessitated by the cancelled flight. 

Remember to keep the receipts for your purchases, so you can document your expenses to the air carrier. 

If the air carrier does not offer a rebooking of your cancelled flight at the earliest opportunity, you may rebook yourself and subsequently file a claim for (reasonable) expenses to the air carrier for the new flight ticket which you have purchased yourself.

If you choose not to rebook, the air carrier must refund the original price paid for the ticket.  

 
An air carrier is not normally obliged to refund consequential damages such as lost hotel bookings at your destination, unused rental vehicles, holiday residence expenses as well as other tourist services and consequential losses.

Regulation (EC) 261/2004 applies to flights from Greenland and the Faroe Islands if the flight is arranged by an EU-registered air carrier.

Regulation (EC) 261/2004 does not apply to flights from Greenland and the Faroe Islands if the flight is arranged by an air carrier that is not domiciled in the EU, for example, Air Greenland and Atlantic Airways.

Regulation (EC) 261/2004 applies to flights to Greenland and the Faroe Islands, irrespective whether the flight is arranged by an air carrier domiciled in the EU or not. 

In relation to your complaint, please consider whether your flight tickets constitute a single booking. Please note that even two tickets purchased under the same booking confirmation can under certain circumstances constitute separate bookings.

 

Upon receiving your complaint, the Danish Civil Aviation and Railway Authority will look at the place of the purchase of the tickets. In case the tickets were purchased directly from the air carrier, the tickets will usually constitute a single booking.

 

On the other hand, if the tickets were purchased via an Online Travel Agency (OTA), the tickets will usually constitute separate bookings, since the OTA’s often sell itineraries that consist of separate tickets purchased directly from the air carriers. The tickets used for the itinerary are either purchased from the same air carrier or from different air carriers.

 

If your tickets were purchased as part of a package travel, the Authority will usually consider the tickets as a single booking. Certain exceptions do, however, apply.

The Authority will contact you, should these exceptions apply.

The air carrier is entitled to subtract compensation that you receive from your tour operator for loss of vacation days at your destination, in connection with a delay on an outgoing flight.

You should file a complaint in the EU country where the cancellation occurred.

 

If the cancellation occurred in a non-EU country while you were travelling to an EU country with an EU-registered air carrier/a community carrier, you should file a complaint with the competent authority in the EU country in which you arrived.

 

The final destination is the airport where your journey ends according to the information on your ticket.    

Yes, the air carrier is entitled to deduct any day/night refunds you may have received from your travel agency for lost bookings at your destination due to cancellation of the flight. 

Yes, children under two years have an equal right to compensation as other passengers, irrespective of the ticket price paid for the child. The deciding factor is that a price has been paid for the ticket and therefore the ticket was not free.