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Cancelled flight had to return early

  • NickyP

    I was in the USA last week when I received an e-mail at 6pm (UK time) cancelling my return flight between Heathrow and Newcastle. It took me 3 days to get in touch with BA. I ended up having to fly home 2 days early due to them offering g me a flight 24hrs after the cancelled one with no offer of accommodation etc. Flew into Heathrow and flight then delayed for 3hrs. Can I claim for loss of two days holiday, expenses etc?


    No. No consequential costs due. You may be due EC261 compensation of £520, and costs would have to be paid from this. This is due to moving your flight earlier. But this won’t be due if it is extraordinary circumstances, or if they let you know >14 days in advance. Airline staffing issues are not extraordinary circumstances. They may be able to claim airport staffing issues (and LHR asking them to cancel flights) are extraordinary circumstances. Alternative sources you might be able to claim from are travel insurance.
    You may also be due compensation for the replacement fight delay. This would be additive on top of original fight compensation. What matters is timing of arrival at your destination, not any timings at LHR. What time did you arrive at Newcastle, and how late were you?

    If you had accepted the flight 24h later, you are due hotel costs (regardless of what they actually told you).

    Lady London

    Wondering why this query is arriing too late for us to help you.

    You are due £520 flight cancellation compensation which as Points_worrier pretty much says, they probably shouldn’t be able to get away with avoiding paying your claim for. Although as usual they’ll probably try the ‘exceptional circs’ thing on.

    They were also obliged to cover all your extra hotel nights in US amd/or at Heathrow till they could provide you flights home plus all meals internet and transport to and from any extra hotel for extra nights needed. By law. Regardless of whether (unlikely) they could have got away with claiming exceptional circs to avoid paying you the compo as well, you were entitled to this.

    In general beware taking an earlier flight because you can lose compo etc…. only do it if you can do it easily and it’s something that suits you or you need to be at work, say.

    I am sure BA was pleased you accepted their lies and saved them all that money.

    There is also existing extensive and repeated guidance for most situations on this site in all the threads under the Flight Changes and Cancellations Categoey header.


    As @LL says, the ship has sailed now, but there was no need to return early, BA is/was obligated to provide you with a hotel following the domestic cancellation if they couldn’t rebook you on the same day. You could also have come back on the transatlantic flight as scheduled and made your own car/train/air arrangements to Newcastle and sought reimbursement from BA. There is also unfortunately a risk that by agreeing to come back two delays early you won’t be eligible for the £520 UK261 compensation.


    Thanks for your advice. I was unable to take the later flight as my dogs had to come out of kennels on the day BA offered the alternative. Kennels full because of people extending days due to cancellations and as I could not get through to BA I lost out. Flight back to Newcastle arrived 3hrs late and the only reason it left was because the pilot was a Geordie who wanted to get home. They were on the verge of cancelling. Just a nightmare holiday where I could not stay any longer unfortunately. I have put in a claim to BA and will take it to court if necessary as they cancelled my flights 5 times on the lead up to the departure

    Lady London

    Good luck NickyP let us know how you get on.


    RESULT: submitted claim on Friday. Personal phone call today: EU comp paid and ALL out of pocket expenses (even those I thought they would refuse to pay), plus a bucket load of Avios as a sorry for losing a couple of days of our holiday.


    Great to hear it has worked out. Always worth remembering EC261 sets out what they are legally required to pay. BA can choose to pay whatever else in addition they want to, especially if it is part of service recovery, or to restore faith in the airline!

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