Announcement of cancelled flight responsibility airline


An airline must prove that a passenger was informed about the cancellation of his flight at least two weeks prior to this flight. Otherwise, the airline is obligated to pay compensation, even if the consumer booked via a travel agency.

That is how the European Court of Justice decided. The court ruled in a case from a passenger against Surinam Airways (SLM). The man booked tickets for a return flight between Amsterdam and Paramaribo for the 14th of November 2014 via a travel agency online.

The airline informed the travel agency on the 9th of October 2014 that the flight was cancelled. However, the travel agency did not inform the passenger until the 4th of November.

Compensation cancelled flight

The passenger claimed an amount of EUR 600,- from the airline because he was informed about the cancellation of his flight less than two weeks prior to his departure. SLM refused to pay and claimed the travel agency was responsible. The travel agency disagreed.

The court emphasized that the airlines was responsible. "As long as the airline cannot prove that the passenger was informed more than two weeks prior to his scheduled departure time, the airline is obligated to pay the compensation mentioned in the regulation", the court decided.

The airline however does have the option to claim this compensation from the travel agency afterwards.

Read the press release on the case here

Your right to compensation in case of cancelled flight

If your flight is cancelled and the airline is sited within EU, Norway or Iceland, you might be entitled to this compensation:

  • 250 euro for all flights not exceeding 1 500 kilometers
  • 400 euro for all flights within the EU longer than 1 500 kilometers and for all other flights between 1 500 and 3 500 kilometers
  • 600 euro for all other flights, covered by EU regulations.

The compensation can be changed if the airline rebooks you to another flight. Read more about cancelled flight.