We all know how frustrating it can bewhen something goes wrong with your flight. The complexity and inconsistency in passenger rights does not make it easier. We have been campaigning for all governments to apply the same core principles on passenger rights, that have been endorsed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).
These include the right to care and assistance in the case of delays and rerouting, and to refunds or other compensation in the case of cancellations, where the circumstances are within an airline’s control. It would be unfair, for example, to hold airlines financially accountable for delays related to air traffic control,poor weather, or airport employees strikes, that may cause flight disruptions and cancellations.
Find out more below about what you can do in case of travel disruption or issues with an airline or travel agent.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can IATA help me with my airline/travel agency complaint?
While we serve the airline industry, we are not a regulatory body, and cannot intervene in service disputes or other commercial matters involving airlines or agents and their customers.
For any issue, we recommend approaching the customer service of the respective airline or agent directly.
What are my rights with regard to an incident or accident related to a journey by air?
The "Conditions of Contract and Other Important Information" details airline liability with regard to passenger death or bodily injury, loss of or damage to baggage, and for delay.
It also defines passenger rights and obligations for denied boarding, check-in times, baggage and the transport of dangerous goods. There may be some regional adaptation of the ticket notice.
Please check out the ticket notice applicable to the country of departure indicated on your ticket: www.iatatravelcentre.com/tickets
Are there consumer organizations that I can contact?
The organizations listed below can provide advice on how to proceed with travel complaints, but there may be others specific to your region or country. Your national Civil Aviation Authority may be of help.
Is there a government authority I can contact for my airline/airport complaint?
If you wish to escalate an issue related to any aspect of air travel, contact the Civil Aviation Authorities of the country in which the airline is registered. Directory of Civil Aviation Authorities
Are there rules for persons with reduced mobility that airlines should follow?
Unfortunately, there are no harmonized regulations. Please refer to what the different airlines offer.
To get a clearer explanation on why passenger rights are so complex and what we are doing to make it less difficult for you and the airlines, listen to this 4 min podcast.