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24h delay on BA


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Right, following my recent trip to London, I was delayed a total a 24h by BA due to a flight change.

 

Timeline of events:

Flight booked - June 2021

2 weeks after booking, got a email saying that my connecting flight had been moved 1h earlier, so I have -5m to make the connection. Meaning my first flight will arrive 5 minutes after my second flight had departed. Now, that email did not offer me a change to an alternative or instruct me to contact them.

 

I asked on the BA forums (not official) and I was told that the flights are "ages away", I am "panicking over nothing" and, this is the best one, "the system will pick up problems like these". So I did nothing.

 

And nothing.

 

Until 20 hours before my first flight, they phoned me up. They offered me a flight 3 hours earlier so that I can make my connection, which I refused as it will cause disruption to my day. So they put me onto the next day's flight as my connection is the last flight of the day. There is an option of the first flight of the day which I also refused. Either way, even with the first flight, it will still put me over 12h later than the booked time.

 

My question is, does this makes me eligible for compensation? I am not quite up to speed with the post-Brexit rules, but I believe the timeframes still apply?

 

Thanks

NatWest for £272:Full and final settlement: 13/11/06

Argos Card for £52.50:Paid to Argos account: 10/11/06

Bank of Scotland for £218:Full and final settlement: 25/01/07

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Hi there, well this is going to be a difficult one.

 

As a foreword I don't know what BA forum you're speaking about but I would dare say that their advice sucks gigantic spheres as you should of course have got in touch with BA immediately to arrange a change at your convenience with no extra fee or a full refund. Now that this is a moot point let's see what your options are:

 

What's your situation? Have you already travelled? Are you going ahead with this trip? What exactly do you want?

 

You should be able to request various adjustments free of charge:

-A hotel night free of charge since you now have to stay overnight.

-A further schedule change at no charge for another day that's more convenient for you.

-A full refund

 

However are you eligible for compensation? Doubtful as you were notified of your flight change 2 weeks ahead of time (I assume) so this doesn't fall within the compensation bracket. The fact that your new schedule was outlandish is a little strange for sure but you were notified with enough time to comply with EC261. Note also that youf flight was not delayed, and you seem to have accepted their offer for a re-schedule. I really don't see a complaint going anywhere.

 

 

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The forum is a general travellers forum, with a BA sub forum with some BA staffers advising on a personal capacity. Most members are the "stuck up" type with status and complain about having a pax in the middle seat on a domestic flight type, if you know what I mean. 

 

And some points for clarification:

1. While I was notified, there was nothing in the notice that I have to contact them. 

2. They contacted me with the alternative flights 20h before the (first) flight. 

3. Even as close as 24h before the first flight, I got the standard automated email about covid, indicating that it is going ahead, as booked, with their systems not sensing any problems. 

4. And finally, yes, I had travelled. 

 

Surely, when I was notified of the flight change, and in any case, within 2 weeks of the flight, I should also be offered the 3 options you listed, not 20h before? All I got was an email telling me that the connecting flight had changed time without anything else. 

Edited by dx100uk
unnecessary previous post quote removed

NatWest for £272:Full and final settlement: 13/11/06

Argos Card for £52.50:Paid to Argos account: 10/11/06

Bank of Scotland for £218:Full and final settlement: 25/01/07

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RE: EC261 Compensation

 

It's normal they won't have asked you to contact them . Your initial rescheduling was obviously done by a bot - and there was no human to notice the mistake, as far as the bot knew your scheduling was perfectly normal so there was no need to ask you to contact them.

 

As long as that was done 2 weeks in advance the carrier's liability to notify you is fulfilled.   (You could have contacted them there and pointed out that the new schedule was impossible. Unfortunately you didn't. Claiming you didn't notice is not likely to work in your favor)

 

The bot who sent you the 24h confirmation didn't notice the mistake either, obviously.

 

At some point a human or another bot finally identified the problem and that's when they called you. As far as they are concerned neither you nor them had noticed the scheduling mistake and they took it on them to notify you so you don't have a bad surprise when you try and check in.

 

However as far as I know, neither flight was delayed or cancelled. You could have taken both flights, if you had the power to be in two places at the same time.

 

So I don't think there is any scope to claim for EC261. But claim forms are free so feel free to try.

 

 

Then, you can certainly make an old fashioned claim (directly to BA)

 

What could perhaps play in your favor:

 

It's the carrier's responsibility to ensure that they don't sell you a ticket where the flyer cannot meet the minimum connection time or MCT.

 

This situation mostly applies to situations where the flyer doesn't know and gets caught. For example say you connect at LHR and you are given 35 minutes to connect. This may look just fine to an unsuspecting tourist, but in reality there is practically zero chance to make the connection, therefore the airline is liable here for selling you this ticket resulting in you missing your connection

 

In your case though it could be argued that even an unsuspecting tourist should be able to tell that it is not possible for them to depart 5 minutes prior to disembarking and therefore that you should have checked your notification more carefully.

 

The fact that the bot allowed such a glaring mistake to happen is certainly an argument in your favour shall you decide to make a complaint.

 

 

What doesn't play in your favor:

 

The airline obviously did their best to get you to your destination as soon as they noticed their mistake. They offered you more than one alternative (the first alternative would have got you in time at your destination, but you declined) and you then accepted another alternative, and fully travelled the ticket. That is a very strong position for them.

 

 

What did you lose and what do you intend to claim for?

 

You took the overnight connection so obviously you had to stay at an airport hotel. Is that correct? Did you keep the receipt for your hotel and meals?

 

You certainly should have asked them on the phone when negotiating your re-route that they provide a hotel. Within 20hrs of the flight it's something they would most probably not have denied to you (but airlines will generally avoid offering off the bat. Why lose money when a customer is just going to roll with it and pay for their own stay anyway, right?). After the fact it's going to be a lot more difficult to claim.

 

I do certainly think it would be reasonable to try and write them a polite but firm letter to claim for that. Not 700 euros, not damages and hardship and all that jazz, just the extra expense you incurred following a scheduling mistake that they made (that should have never happened) and that they didn't notice until way too late in the day , with your categorical inability to leave 3 hours earlier (you had very important business meetings or something critical, it certainly wasn't just convenience) and the extra costs incurred, and asking that they kindly provide compensation for the hotel and meals, which you feel it was their duty to offer you and you are politely disappointed that they didn't, and thafully you happen to have kept all the receipts. Put Alex Cruz on copy for good measure.

 

No guarantee but I feel it has a fair chance of success.

Most probably you will be offered a heap of Avios instead of cash. It's then up for you to decide whether you want to accept that. Personally I wouldn't bother going further, but that's just me. See if anyone here disagrees, and do let us know what you decide and keep in touch with how it went.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Thanks for your long reply. Breaking down your points...

 

1) First flight was in fact delayed to the point that even if the second flight was not changed, I will still miss it anyway. However, it probably don't matter here. Like you said, a bot (or system) did not spot the problem is quite strange.

 

2) Offering me an alternative, 20h before the flight, when I got my next day planned, is not exactly an alternative. I understand that the cut off date is 2 weeks before where their liability ends? If less than 2 weeks, the odds is in my favour?

 

 3) Yes, I kept the receipts but no I did not stay at an airport hotel as non are suitable for me as I was travelling with a 2 & 5 yo (also the reason that some of the alternatives they offered were not suitable/possible) so I need a 4 pax family room.

 

4) I did ask but the person on the phone said I need to contact Customers Relationsion (or something like that, basically a claim?) as he is only responsible for rebooking. I did ask again at check in and was told the same.

 

5) Yes, I kept all the receipts and paid on card, so the payments are all on one statement.

 

6) I may consult TS on this, they did help me along with my Section 75/Chargeback for a dodgy booking for this very same trip. It is just a little embarrassing to keep asking them as they are also going to assist me in a historic claim now. Perhaps CAB or something?

 

Edited by dx100uk
unnecessary previous post quote removed

NatWest for £272:Full and final settlement: 13/11/06

Argos Card for £52.50:Paid to Argos account: 10/11/06

Bank of Scotland for £218:Full and final settlement: 25/01/07

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To the risk of repeating myself. I don't personally believe an EC261 will be succesful here, as it covers denied boarding, delays and cancellations.

What you have here is none of the above. It's something different. If you disagree with me you can fill a form and try to claim it as a delay, see where that goes. I would be very happy to be proven wrong!

 

Good to see that you are able to produce receipts, and even better to hear they had already invited you to speak to someone to get Hotel access. I don't suppose you have any written record of that.

 

I think that an expense claim for your hotel and meal bills for you and all accompanying pax has a very good chance of success, on the basis of your story. Make sure you demand a specific amount,  that you produce the available evidence, and that you aren't too threatening.

 

You can try both the EC261 and the old fashioned claim at the same time. Any amount you would be owed via EC261 would be deductible from the other claim. You can even say that you are claiming both as you aren't sure if it would count as a delay, but that you will be satisfied as long as your expenses are paid.

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