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COMPLAINT: Avoid Air Berlin if you have a schedule to keep

 
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Old Mar 11, 2012, 6:36 PM
klsmithnyc klsmithnyc is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 1

I was booked on a flight from JFK to Berlin on Air Berlin, leaving at 6:35 on Saturday 3/10. When I arrived at the airport, my flight (the only one on Air Berlin) had been delayed until 3:30 THE FOLLOWING DAY. Air Berlin classified this as a delay, so that they would not have to offer rebooking assistance. They also did not offer any help in booking a hotel, getting me home, or even a meal voucher. The gate staff seemed to be given orders to not apologize or offer any assistance other than giving out cards with a German phone number and address.

I could have rebooked myself, for $1000+ one-way, so I chose to fly the next day. When I arrived at the airport, the "delayed" flight was going out as expected, but that day's 6:35 flight was not scheduled for 5 a.m the following morning. Still, no offer of rebooking or assistance.

Yes, it's a cheap airfare, but you get what you pay for.
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Old Mar 11, 2012, 11:25 PM
jimworcs jimworcs is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Shropshire, England
Posts: 3,197

This delay is coverd by Regulation EU 261 and you are entitled to be compensated. You were also entitled to accommodatiion, a free phone call and meals. The fact that your flight originated in the US does not exempt you, if your destination was in the EU and you flew on an EU based carrier. As both these criteria apply to you, you were entitled to the rights bestowed by this regulation.

Write to Air Berlin demanding your entitlement to compensation under EU 261. Copy this letter to the competent authority in Germany. You can write to them in English and they will respond in English. The address of the competent authority is:

Luftfahrt-Bundesamt (LBA)
DE - 38144 Braunschweig
Tel.: +49 531 - 2355115 (mo-th 9-16, fr 9-15)
Fax: +49 531 - 2355707 [email protected] http://www.lba.de

If you google EU261, you will find copies of the regulations. At the minimum you are entitled to your hotel costs, meals and the fixed compensation amount.

This is the actual regulation, but you can find a summary through google.

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/...01:0007:EN:PDF

Last edited by jimworcs; Mar 11, 2012 at 11:28 PM.
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