Should your air passenger rights be scrapped?Consultation starts as Europe marks flight rights

04 July 2012

Airport sign directing travellers to the terminal.

Consumers are being asked if their flight rights should be abolished as part of the government's drive to reduce red tape.

The question is put to consumers as part of the government's Red Tape Challenge, which was extended to cover aviation at the start of July. 

Refund and compensation rights

Consumers have until 26 July to comment on questions about the future of flight rights regulations that cover refunds and compensation for delays and cancellations, lost baggage, financial protection for customers if travel companies go bust, help for disabled people, and information given to passengers.

One of the questions in the Red Tape Challenge asks if these regulations should be scrapped altogether. Others ask if they could be replaced by a voluntary code, simplified, merged, or improved by better enforcement. Consumers are also asked if the regulations should be left as they are.

Full details of how the regulations protect you are in our Which? flight rights guide.

European flight rights 

The consultation on flight rights is taking place as 28 airports across Europe marked air passenger rights day on  4 July. 

Gatwick and Belfast International were two of the airports taking part in the day, which is intended to improve passengers' knowledge of their rights. The day is organised by the European Consumer Centres

Cancellations and delays

One of key pieces of European law included in the Red Tape Challenge is the EU Regulation 261, which gives you rights to refunds and compensation for cancellations and delays, and is being reviewed by the European Commission.

Airlines including Ryanair have argued the regulation should be watered down so airlines do not have to pay for customers care if delays are down to events outside airlines' control, such as bad weather or airport closures.

Which? Travel believes the law should not be watered down and urges consumers to make their views on the law clear by contributing to the government's consultation.

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