Holidaymakers jetting off to sunnier climes this Easter may not arrive quite as quickly as they expected - it’s been predicted that half of flights to some popular Mediterranean tourist spots could be delayed.
The website www.FlightDelays.co.uk says 50% of the passengers heading to Corfu and Ibiza are likely to face Easter delays.
It also predicts Lanzarote, Albufeira in Portugal and Majorca will be badly affected by flight delays.
The website arrived at its delay conclusions after studying data from last year on the top 10 Easter destinations for Brits.
It found that flights to Corfu were delayed by an average of 23 minutes, while passengers off to Ibiza were left waiting 41 minutes.
On the bright side, sunseekers heading for Crete at Easter are the most likely to get there on time.
What you’re entitled to
If you’re travelling from a European airport or with an EU airline, your airline is obliged to look after you with food and drink, two phone calls and, if you’re delayed overnight, accommodation plus transport to and from where you’re staying, says Emma Coulthurst from holiday price comparison site TravelSupermarket.com.
This welfare obligation kicks in if you’re delayed for more than two to three hours, depending on the length of the flight.
If you’re travelling from a European airport or with an EU airline and your flight arrives at its destination more than three hours late, you may be entitled to financial compensation of between €250 to €600. The compensation is determined by the flight length and how long the delay is, calculated by the time the flight arrives at its destination, not its departure time.
But Coulthurst warns: “You’re only entitled to compensation if the delay was within the airline’s control. Extraordinary circumstances like really bad weather don’t count, unfortunately.”
Coulthurst stresses she doesn’t think it’s fair to make predictions on which destinations and airlines are likely to face the most delays this Easter purely based on the previous Easter’s data.
“It could be completely different airlines or destinations this time. Whatever the reasons were last year may not be the reasons this year,” she points out.
Know your rights
But wherever the delays are, they will happen, and holidaymakers should know their rights before they set off, advises Coulthurst.
If your flight’s delayed, ask the airline what’s causing the delay. Make a note of the details so you’re clear on the facts at a later date, and keep your tickets and any relevant receipts.
When you’re ready to claim, the Civil Aviation Authority CAA also has advice on information to include. If you’re communicating by post, the CAA’s site has a downloadable letter template to make the process as simple as possible.
Has your flight ever been significantly delayed? Tell us in the Comments section below