Brexit and its impact on passenger rights in the EU

After 43 years of membership, Great Britain has decided to leave the EU. Its Prime Minister David Cameron announced his resignation earlier today and left the task of deciding when to activate Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon to his successor. Now that Britain has shown its intention to leave the EU, what does that mean for European legislation, and in particular EU 261/2004?

The outcome of the referendum does not equal an immediate exit. To trigger Article 50, Britain must officially notify the EU of its intention to leave. A two-year negotiation period follows, during which the terms and conditions of the exit are to be decided and approved by all remaining EU member states and the European Parliament. In the meantime, although Britain ceases its participation in any EU-decision making process, all treaties, agreements, and regulations previously adopted are fully enforceable. Once this two-year period of negotiation has elapsed, Britain will be considered a non-member state and EU Regulation 261/2004 will no longer apply for flights leaving out of the country and operated by carriers such as British Airways, EasyJet, Monarch, etc.

There is however a possibility, that passengers departing from, or landing on British territory, will continue to exercise their rights under EU 261/2004. Similar to Norway, Britain could decide to sign a constitutional treaty with the European Union without being a member, in which case passengers will continue to receive compensation for delayed, cancelled or overbooked flights.

What are my rights under EU 261/2004

EU Regulation 261/2004 states that passengers are entitled to monetary compensation of up to €600 when their flight has been excessively delayed (3 hours or more), cancelled or overbooked, and the airline is at fault.

Am I entitled to compensation?

If your flight has been delayed, cancelled or overbooked, you may verify if you’re entitled to compensation via our Compensation Calculator. If you are unsure of whether or not the reason for the delay will qualify you for compensation, please get in touch with us and share the details of your case, and we’ll be happy to help!