Flight cancellation and passengers information

TRANS036[1]A new decision from the ECJ was recently rendered in respect of the duty to inform passengers in case of flight cancellation pursuant to the EC Regulation No 261/2004 (11 May 2017, C-302/16, Bas Jacob Adriaan Krijgsman v Surinaamse Luchtvaart Maatschappij NV).

In this case, a passenger was informed of the cancellation of his flight less than two weeks before departure. However, it appeared that the airline informed the travel agent who sold the ticket of this cancellation in time.

The passenger sought compensation under the above mentioned Regulation.

The ECJ confirmed that the airline should justify that it informed the passenger of the cancellation in time, even though the passenger purchased his ticket through a travel agent.

→ to be noted: The airline now has to take appropriate measures to inform directly passengers in case of flight cancellation, whether the ticket was sold directly or through a travel agent. In practice, this would be quite difficult for Airlines to perform as they may not have contact details of passengers when ticket was sold through an agent. The proposition of revision of the Regulation No261/2004 suggests to deal with this issue.