If your Ryanair flight is delayed you are likely to be eligible for compensation for up to $600 per passenger.
If you checked Ryanair’s own site, you might struggle to find this information, on their page relating to delay details of compensation are somewhat hidden.
However, as with all operators with flights into and out of the EU, they are governed by EU flight legislation, EU 261/2004 to be specific.
As things stand, this will continue to be the case irrespective of any final Brexit deal, this flight regulation a piece of legislation that will remain untouched.
In keeping with many operators, Ryanair’s site does little to ease the path of those seeking compensation. However, we can answer all the key questions in this post – by the end you should know whether you are entitled to compensation (and if yo are your case is cast iron – none of the ‘you might be entitled to a claim you’ll see on Ryanair’s site.). You will also know how to claim what is rightfully yours.
Are Ryanair Flights Subject To EU Legislation?
As an EU operator, all Ryanair flights are subject to the EU legislation and so any flight is automatically covered and so has the potential to lead to a compensation claim.
That though does not mean that every delayed flight is subject to compensation. Let us explain.
Which flights are covered / under what circumstances is flight delay compensation applicable?
There are three key factors here; the length of the delay, what caused it and how ling ago the delay occurred.
The delay must be for at least three hours; any flight delayed for a lesser period will not be subject to compensation.
The flight distance is not a factor in whether compensation is applicable but it will help determine the amount received – we will expand on this in a later section.
However, the cause of the delay is also of prime importance. If the delay is of the airline’s causing or a factor that is under their control, then a compensation claim is likely to be successful. If, however, the delay was outside the airline’s control, ‘exceptional circumstances’ to use the official terminology, then compensation will not be available.
As for when the delay occurred – if it was within six years for England or Wale, or five years for those living in Scotland, then compensation could apply. The difference is the statute of limitations in the countries, Scotland having a slight difference in this area.
What Do Ryanair Count as Exceptional Circumstances?
The exceptional circumstances clause is of course not set by Ryanair.
What it relates to is whether it is a factor that the airline can control. If the delay is caused by a technical issue with the plane, this would be under Ryanair’s control. So too would a strike by their staff members, or the failure of crew members to arrive on time (perhaps because of issues with an earlier flight).
Typically, this will be shown by other flights, those from other operators or even other Ryanair flights leaving promptly, yet your flight remaining on the ground.
Exceptional circumstances are matters outside of an operator’s control, though you could argue whether many are truly ‘exceptional’.
Extreme weather would qualify, so too any issue impacting the airport and so hampering flights, perhaps a major power cut or security alert.
Strikes by non airline specific staff would also be deemed exceptional so if delays were caused by baggage handler strikes then compensation would not apply.
It is though easy to check. We have a claim form on site and by simply entering some very basic flight details you can quickly find out if compensation applies.
How much compensation could I be entitled to from Ryanair?
When compensation does apply, there is a simple table that determines the claim figure. It is a mix of length of delay and distance of flight.
Please simply refer to the figures below.
250 Euros – for any flight of up to 1,500km with a delay of three hours or more
300 Euros – A delay of three to four hours on a flight of 3,500km or more.
400 Euros – for any flight of between !,500 and 3,500km that is delayed by at least three hours. This figures also applies to flights of 3,500km or more between EU members with a delay of three hours.
600 Euros – A flight of 3,5000km that is delayed by more than four hours.
As a family or group travelling the figure can often run to several thousand Euros.
The figure relates to each passenger, this including children on a paid-for seat. As you can see, for family suffering delays the amount can be significant indeed.
Business travellers too who take multiple flights might be entitled to many thousands of pounds across the course of a year.
Ryanair’s Duty of Care
Quite aside from compensation, Ryanair also has a duty of care to passengers who suffer delays, this covering food, drink and, where the delay goes overnight, accomodation.
The food and drink entitlement is often in the form of vouchers to be use in the airport. On occasion, airlines will be less than helpful in arranging accommodation (and travel there and back to the airport). According to the CAA, a passenger or travelling group would be within their rights to book and pay for accommodation themselves and then claim back from the airline.
The duty of care is quite separate from compensation, by taking vouchers for food and drink or accepting overnight accommodation you re not compromising your compensation claim.
How to claim
The section following this gives brief details about Ryanair as a company, these perhaps giving some insight as to the type of company you would be up against in any compensation claim.
There are three main ways people try to get compensation, although one of those three can be ruled out.
The option to ignore is to hire a lawyer – this will lead to fees regardless of success and these will greatly eat into the available compensation.
A lawyer can help you get the compensation as set out but he EU, but they can’t swell this figure.
A second option is to carry out the claim yourself. This is perfectly possible, but it is not without stress and it will use up a great deal of your time. RyanAir will fight the claim.
Faced with form after form after form and no obvious progress, many passengers simply drop the process.
The third option, and the one RyanAir hate, is for passengers to use companies such as FlightReclaim to process their claims.
We know how flight operators work, we can process claims quickly and our track record means that success is assured in the overwhelming majority of cases.
For RyanAir, it is not worth using their delaying tactics as they simply eat into their time too, it is not worth them threatening that the case will require a court hearing because they would lose. These threats, which can put off many making the claim themselves, would be points when using FlightReclaim as we are happy to go to court on our client’s behalf and do so in a way that is risk-free to the customer.
Unlike the lawyer, we are a no win, no fee service. If you don’t get compensation you don’t owe us a penny.
That said, we rarely lose – our success rate is 98% and we have helped a combined 50,000 passengers claim more than £20 million between them. On TrustPilot we have a superb rating and reputation from more than 200 reviews.
The process is also incredibly simple – hit the start my claim button on site, enter the basic details and then leave it to us.
Ryanair is an Irish budget airline founded in 1984.
It is an airline that has had both huge success yet also major reputational troubles. By 2016 Ryanair had grown to become the largest European budget airline by scheduled passengers flown, and carried more international passengers than any other airline.
The airline has a fleet of close to 400 aircraft and flies to 225 destinations. The company employs some 17,500 personnel and had a revenue of more than £7 billion in 2018. They are an airline who can afford to pay passengers compensation to which they are entitled and yet they are also a company renowned for maximising all the little extras – the heavy use of extra charges being heavily and continually criticised.
By 2019, it had been voted the least-liked short-haul Airline six years running in Which? Surveys and came last in a 2019 rating of 100 UK brands’ customer service. The airline have in the past suggested they will bring in charges for using the toilet on flights. That might give some insight as to ow hey might behave when faced with compensation claims.