Flight delay

Order of the Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation No.82 dated June 28, 2007 («On approval of the general rules of air carriage of passengers, baggage and cargo as well as requirements for the services provided to passengers, consignors and consignees»), Section VII «Passenger Services», paragraph 99:

If the flight was disrupted through the fault of the carrier or the flight was delayed or canceled due to adverse weather conditions, technical or other reasons or the flight route was changed, the carrier is to arrange for the passengers at the points of departure and at the intermediate points the following:

  • accommodation of a passenger with a child under the age of 7 in the mother-and-child room;
  • two telephone calls or e-mails if waiting for the departure of the flight for more than two hours;
  • soft drinks if waiting for the departure of the flight for more than two hours;
  • hot meals if waiting for the departure of the flight for more than four hours and then every six hours during the day and every eight hours during the night;
  • accommodation in a hotel if waiting for the departure of the flight for more than eight hours during the day and for more than six hours during the night;
  • transportation from the airport to the hotel and back when the hotel is available without additional charge;
  • storage of baggage.

The services mentioned above are provided to passengers without additional charge.

These services must be provided to passengersby any airlines operating both charter and scheduled flights in the Russian Federation as well as international flights operated by Russian airlines.

The adopted document brings the Russian passenger service standards closer to the standards applied to the EU air carriers.

If the delayed flight is a flight from a EU country, you are entitled to demand a similar service referring to Regulation (EC) No. 261/2004 of the European Parliament and EU Council being in effect since 2005, which also stipulates the duty to care for the passengers caught up waiting for the flight. Moreover, according to this Regulation, the airline is to inform each passenger in writing about his/her rights in such a situation.

If the airline refuses to provide the services, the following should be done:

  • Make sure you can document the fact that the flight was delayed (this can be an official document issued by the administration of the airport of departure or airport of arrival, new boarding passes or a document drawn up by several passengers with indication of contact details). As a passenger, you do not need to be concerned with the reason of the delay since it does not affect your rights.
  • If possible, try to obtain a written refusal from a representative of the airline to provide the services in the situation of the flight delay. In case of refusal to issue such document or absence of airline representative, draw up the relevant document with other passengers to confirm this fact (it is enough to have two witnesses).
  • Pay for the hot meals, hotel room and taxi from your own funds and keep the receipts to prove your expenses.
  • Upon returning home, file a written claim to receive indemnification for the damage you suffered providing copies of all the documents (including copies of airline tickets and receipts). If pre-trial dispute resolution was refused, indemnity claims amounting to less than 50,000 rubles are considered by the Justice of the Peace.

You can get assistance in protecting your interests from consumer protection organizations, members of the International Confederation of Consumer Societies, as well as from the territorial bodies of the Federal Service for Oversight of Consumer Protection and Welfare.