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Sunday, August 19, 2012

New law sees compensation for flight delays

Law which was passed last week ensures that airlines pay out in case of flight delays and cancellations; presents detailed list of passenger rights

A new law,the Aviation Services Law, which came into force last week will ensure that passengers receive compensation for flight cancelations, major delays and changes in terms and conditions.
The law, which was passed in the Knesset in line with a proposal presented by Knesset Member Ahmad Tibi (United Arab List-Ta’al) may cost airlines and tour operators a hefty sum.
The law details the alternatives and support services passengers must be offered if their flights are cancelled or delayed as well as the passengers’ right to seek compensation without proof of damage to a sum of up to NIS 10,000 ($2,480) should the passenger go to court after failing to receive direct compensation from those responsible for the flight.
The law applies to scheduled flights as well as charter flights, flights leaving Israel, including flights by foreign carriers, as well as layovers. Airlines or charter operators that fail to comply with the new law will be subject to stiff penalties which could include a ban from Ben Gurion airport.
The law states that passengers must be compensated with food and drink, according to the time they are forced to wait as a hotel room for the night if the wait is overnight or more.
Should the flight be delayed between 5 and 8 hours, the passenger can cancel their reservation, receiving in exchange for a full refund from the airline.
Moreover, the passenger is entitled to compensation due to cancellations, delays or any other major change in the terms of the ticket by the operator within 45 days of the date a request for compensation was presented in writing.
The compensation will then be paid out to the passenger in cash, by credit card or any other method agreed upon by the sides where compensation will equal 25%-100% of the ticket price in line with the flight distance.