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Denied Boarding? Here’s What to Do

by Jessica Amey

If you’ve ever been in a situation where you turn up at the airport and you’re bumped from a flight, you’ll understand how unbelievably frustrating it can be! You’ve done everything correctly – arrived on time – check; have your passport – check; have your booking confirmation – check…so why are you now being told you can’t fly? We’re here to help you figure out exactly where you stand when you’ve been denied boarding and – here’s the good news – you may be entitled to compensation from the airline.

Take a look at a quick breakdown of your rights and see how to get the money you deserve:

Why are passengers denied boarding?
Okay, let’s put aside the instances where it’s actually the passenger’s fault (we’ll get to that later). What we’re really talking about here is when denied boarding happens because of overbooking. Yes, this is exactly what it sounds like – the airline sells more seats than are actually on the plane. “But why?” I hear you cry – well, airlines are businesses and all businesses want to make a profit. They rely on what are termed as ‘no shows’ – passengers that don’t show up for the flight – and are able to calculate how many no-shows there are likely to be for every flight. When their predictions are off, that’s when the airline first asks for volunteers to give up their seats and if that doesn’t work, names are picked randomly. So, in the end it’s simply bad luck if you’re bumped and yes, it’s really unfair!

How to deal with getting bumped
When you’re denied boarding, it can feel pretty overwhelming. You haven’t done anything wrong, yet your entire trip is now up in the air. Well, as mentioned, you might at least be able to get compensated for all this trouble and this all depends on your flight distance and route, plus the delay at your destination airport. We know, it all sounds a little over-complicated, but you can easily check online whether you’re entitled to compensation when you’re denied boarding. With companies like MYFLYRIGHT, all you have to do is input your flight date and number and they’ll calculate it all for you. Plus, if you find you are owed money, they’ll pursue your entire case for you for free – so what initially seemed like a whole mess of stress is actually easily manageable. There is help out there, so don’t worry!

Is it your fault?
When it’s due to overbooking, you are absolutely not to blame for being denied boarding. However, there are instances where the airline is perfectly within their rights to not allow you to get on the plane. If you arrive late to check in or you don’t have all your documents with you, then it’s a no-go – check in deadlines are there to ensure flights take off on time and it’s on you to stick to that. Plus, it’s pretty clear that there are specific documents required to fly – in this age of strict aviation security, you, as the passenger, have the responsibility to be on top of this. Times when passengers pose a security or health risk are usually perfectly acceptable for the airline to deny boarding, but sometimes this can be a grey area. 

To sum it up, being denied boarding is rough, but you can turn it around to your advantage. Compensation doesn’t completely make up for the situation, but it certainly helps! One more thing – if you were denied boarding in the past, you may still be able to get compensated – the deadline to claim in the UK is 6 years. To find out if you have a claim, simply check out MYFLYRIGHT and make the whole process simple and stress-free!

Good luck out there fellow travellers!

‘Contributed Post’

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