Passenger rights in problem situations
If your flight or train, coach or ship journey is delayed, cancelled or interrupted, you may be entitled to compensation. File a complaint and a claim for compensation with the company that organised the journey. If you are a consumer and cannot reach an agreement about compensation with the company, you can contact the Consumer Advisory Service of the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority. If you are a business traveller, which means that you travel from work, contact the Finnish Transport and Communications Agency Traficom.
If the airline cancels your flight, you can demand rerouting or a refund of the price of your ticket within seven days.
If your flight is delayed, you can demand care. The airline will then compensate you for the costs of the accommodation and meals caused by the delay. In addition, you may be entitled to a certain amount of compensation. The amount of the compensation depends of the duration of the flight and the length of the delay.
However, no compensation will be paid if you have been informed about the cancellation in advance or the cancellation is caused by extraordinary circumstances. Extraordinary circumstances include industrial action, weather conditions unsuitable for flying, and safety risks.
Airlines sometimes sell more tickets than there are seats on the flight. In this situation, the passengers are usually asked if any of them would like to move to a later flight against compensation.
If you do not want to voluntarily give up your seat and you are still denied boarding, you can choose a rerouting of your flight or a refund of the price of the ticket. You are also entitled to compensation and care while you are waiting for your new flight.
If you have to travel in a lower class than indicated in your ticket, the airline must refund part of the price of your ticket.
If your luggage is delayed, has gone missing or has been damaged, you are entitled to compensation from the airline. The maximum compensation is 1 220 euros. If the value of the missing luggage is more than the maximum amount of compensation, you can apply to your insurance company for additional compensation.
If you are late for the check-in or the flight because of your own fault, you are not entitled to any compensation. If you are late because of problems on your previous flight, you have to claim compensation from the organiser of the previous flight.
A passenger who behaves in a threatening way, is intoxicated, does not have a passport or other required travel documents, or does not follow the instructions given by the crew may be denied the right to board the aircraft. The passenger is not entitled to compensation for having lost the flight in such situations.
If it seems that your long-distance train will be arriving more than an hour late, as a passenger you can demand replacing measures: cancellation or interruption of your journey or rerouting. You can also get compensation for your return ticket if the purpose of your return journey is lost because of the delay on your outbound journey.
Passengers of a delayed train can claim compensation for the delay of their journey and, in some cases, free refreshments. If the train is delayed for more than one hour, the compensation is at the most 25 per cent of the price of the ticket. A delay of more than two hours entitles to a compensation of 50 per cent.
If the passenger is already aware of the delay when buying the ticket, the passenger is not entitled to compensation.
Delays or cancellations of train journeys may cause financial losses for passengers, for example, if they have to buy new tickets for their further connections. Find out whether you can get compensation for these losses from the train operating company.
You can get compensation for long bus and coach journeys if the journey is cancelled or delayed for more than 90 minutes. Journeys are considered to be long if they last more than three hours and are at least 250 kilometres long.
In certain delay situations, the bus or coach company must provide the passengers with snacks, refreshments or meals in addition to compensation. The passenger is entitled to stay the night in a hotel room if necessary and to get compensation for the costs of transport between the terminal and the accommodation. If the delay is caused by difficult weather conditions or natural catastrophes, the passenger is not entitled to compensation.
If you have further costs from the delay for example because of having to buy tickets for new connections, you can claim compensation from the bus or coach company against receipts.
If the bus or coach breaks down in the middle of the journey, the company must organise a replacement vehicle. If an accident occurs, the passengers are entitled to first aid, food, clothes and accommodation, among other things.
If the ship’s departure from the port is delayed by more than 90 minutes or cancelled, you can demand the shipping company to arrange rerouting or to refund the price of the ticket. In delay situations, you also have the right to demand that the shipping company provide you with meals and accommodation when it is possible to organise them.
If the ship’s arrival at the destination is delayed by more than 90 minutes, you can claim a reduction of 25-50 per cent of the price of your ticket. You can claim a compensation for damages also for the damage caused to you by the delay and for damage to your luggage.
If the cancellation or the delay of the voyage is caused by dangerous weather (strong winds, rough seas or a flood), the passenger is not entitled to compensation.
Passengers who are not satisfied with their journey must first contact the company from which they bought their tickets. File a complaint as soon as possible after becoming aware of the error. Try to negotiate a compensation with the company. You should always submit the complaint in writing. You can use the Complaint Assistant online service of the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority when preparing the complaint.
If you are a consumer and cannot reach a satisfactory solution with the company, first contact the Consumer Advisory Service of the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority. A consumer advisor will provide guidance and mediation free of charge. You will also find advice on the website of the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority or you can contact the Consumers’ Union of Finland for advice.
Unresolved disputes will be handled by the Consumer Disputes Board. Handling by the Consumer Disputes Board requires that the consumer has first contacted the Consumer Advisory Service.
If you are a so-called business traveller, which means that you travel from work, send your complaint to the Finnish Transport and Communications Agency Traficom. However, Traficom doesn’t handle complaints about luggage.