Your rights if snow hits your flightAirlines must help with delays and cancellations

15 January 2013

Snow Airport

Heavy snow has been forecast for much of the UK, threatening delays and cancellations to flights, particularly in eastern and northern England.

If your flight is delayed or cancelled because of snow the airline has an obligation to look after you. However, you are unlikely to get compensation because airlines class extreme weather as 'extraordinary circumstances' beyond their control.

To find out full details of your rights for flight delays, cancellations and other problems, have a look at our travel rights guides.

Flight delays

If your flight is delayed or cancelled your airline is obliged to offer assistance under the Denied Boarding Regulation, as long as you're travelling with an airline based in the EU, or a non-EU airline flying from an EU airport.

Whether you are covered by the regulation depends on the length of the flight and the length of the delay. But if you are covered, your entitlements include free meals and refreshments, and free hotel accommodation if an overnight stay is required.

Flight cancellations

For , you have the same rights to meals, refreshments and accommodation.

You should also be offered a choice of a refund within seven days of the full cost of the flight, or re-routing to your destination as soon as possible, or re-routing at a later date convenient to you.

Package holidays

If you booked a package holiday and your flight was cancelled, you have the right to cancel your holiday and get a full refund, or re-book for another departure.

You should not have to pay administration charges for re-booking your holiday. If you are re-booked to a cheaper holiday you are entitled to a refund for the price difference. However, if the new holiday would have cost more than the original, you may incur some additional costs.

Insurance for weather cancellations

Your insurance may cover you for extraordinary circumstance such as severe weather. Check your travel insurance documentation. You can also see who Which? picks as recommended providers for travel insurance

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