Back in May (read more here), we had a Reader Question-case where S7 Airlines of Russia claimed that EC 261/2004 wouldn’t apply to them for a trip starting in Vienna because they are not based in European Union.
This obviously was utter nonsense because this legislation applies to all flights from EU + Switzerland, Norway and Iceland (and community carriers’ flights TO the same area).
Here’s what the reader wrote at the time:
I was traveling from Moscow to Vienna and back. First flight was alright, but with returned I had some problems. I was traveling from Vienna to Moscow by Russian airlines S7.
They canceled my flight before 4 days till my departure. They didn’t gave me alternative ticket. They just write to me to call to them and after this they maybe do something. I called them free days and made three application that I need another flight. Before one day till my departure they send me email with another ticket.
When I returned I tried to receive compensation due EC 261/2004, but S7 wrote to me, that they are not EU resident and not regulated by EU law. They don’t wont to pay to me.
I don’t know what to do. How can I punished them and forced them to pay compensation to me? They should pay to me due EC 261/2004 because flight was canceled with out any reason and it was from EU.
Here’s what I suggested reader to do:
The EC 261/2004 definitely does apply here. It doesn’t matter that S7 Airlines is not Community Carrier because the flight was from Austria.
Because S7 Airlines didn’t inform the reader more than a week in advance of the cancellation they could get away from paying compensation only if the alternate flight(s) is not scheduled to leave more than hour earlier and the reader doesn’t arrive to his final destination more than two hours late.
As long as this is not the case, the reader could contact the National Enforcement Body for Austria and open a case with them against the S7 Airlines.
Here’s the list of the enforcement bodies:
There are companies that handle these claims too that usually take roughly one third or more from the compensation paid by the airline.
Here’s update from the reader:
I have a new information about my case with S7 Airlines. I wrote to Austrian The Agency for Passenger Rights (apf) https://www.apf.gv.at/
After message to them and a few months I received message from AFP that S7 agree to pay for me and my girl 800 euro (400 euro per person). I received this payment yesterday.
It is always good to hear that a reader has been successful getting what they were owned by an airline that didn’t want to follow the EC 261/2004 legislation.
There is really no need to use any of the claims agencies that take 30% or more cut of the money if they are successful as long as you are willing to bit of the work by yourself. These National Enforcement Bodies are there to help consumers with their claims to ensure that airlines adhere to the legislation.