Content of the material
- Can you get a refund if you miss your flight?
- 4. Check your travel insurance
- Did You Purchase Travel Insurance?
- What should you do if your flight is delayed?
- 6. If needed, find the cheapest flight with Skyscanner
- Ask about the Flat Tire Rule
- We are Celt Kiwi
- Missed flights abroad
- What if you still can’t catch yourflight?
- Youre Going to Get There Soon!
- Document Everything
- 2. Online Check-in:
- 4. Get Yourself Prepared for the Security Line:
- How do different causes of missing your flight affect your rights?
- What happens if you miss your flight on purpose?
- Bottom line
Can you get a refund if you miss your flight?
The short answer to this is, ‘No’. Passengers are not automatically refunded for missing their flight as it is their duty to board on time. In some cases, you may qualify for a discount on the next available flight or even be allowed to board for virtually free of charge, but this is done at the discretion of individual airlines and at unique times.
4. Check your travel insurance
What to do if you miss your flight really depends on if you have travel insurance. Trip cancellation insurance has very specific rules, so you need to check your policy to find out the details. However, if you missed your flight due to weather or an airline delay, then you’ll likely qualify for insurance after a delay of four hours. What that means is that your insurance will pay for the costs to get you to your intended destination. You can even claim the cost of your hotels if you need to stay overnight before departing in the morning.
Did You Purchase Travel Insurance?
If you checked the box that most of us say no to, this might help quite a bit . Assuming you did, then your day just got a little easier. As long as you have a qualifying reason, your travel insurance will cover your expenses for a cancelled flight or delay.
Qualifying reasons differ per policy, so you will need to read the fine print. Generally speaking, if your flight is delayed or cancelled by four hours, then your insurance will cover the costs for another flight to get you to your next destination. There’s no need to wait standby, just book a flight with any airline and be on your way.Check the Terms of Your Flight
What should you do if your flight is delayed?
If and when a flight is delayed, it is the responsibility of the airline to inform passengers about this delay and provide all the information needed, such as how long the wait will be. Most airlines, depending on how long the delay is, will compensate their passengers. If a flight is delayed by more than a certain number of hours (the amount of time is airline and route dependent), you will be compensated with meals and accommodation near the airport if need be. For shorter delays, you might even be given access to the airline’s luxury lounges, keeping you as comfortable as possible! Be aware that some airlines might only give you a percentage of your air ticket back – another reason why travel insurance is a good idea.
6. If needed, find the cheapest flight with Skyscanner
If you have to book yourself a new flight, you can do so via our website and app. Don’t forget to check alternative transport options too. If you are funding the new flight yourself, you might want to investigate rail routes, or the cost of renting a car.Download the Skyscanner App and Save!
Ask about the Flat Tire Rule
There is an unpublicized policy to help customers who miss their flights because of circumstances beyond control. If you can benefit from this policy, the missed flight that caused so much stress could wind up costing you nothing.
The slang term within the airline industry for this policy is the flat tire rule. The idea is that if you experience some mishap that prevents you from arriving at the gate on-time, the airline will re-issue a standby boarding pass for the next flight to your destination at no charge. It doesn’t apply to someone who shows up the next day — and generally becomes unavailable about two hours after the original departure time. Note that some will refer to it as the “two-hour rule.”
That’s why it’s important to proceed to the airport, even when you know the original flight will be leaving without you.
This is not a courtesy that is associated with low-cost carriers. Remember, their business model charges for anything beyond basic transportation. Missed flights on budget carriers frequently incur a financial penalty.
This is a nebulous policy, and some airlines won’t even talk about it. After all, they want you to buy refundable tickets at much higher prices.
But airlines concerned about customer service frequently try to accommodate domestic passengers caught in these circumstances. Just remember: it’s usually a discretionary policy, which means the decision to help you often depends upon the gate representative’s decision and the availability of seating on the next flights.
We are Celt Kiwi
Also known as Tiernan, Rachel and Wendy! It’s lovely to see you here. At Celt & Kiwi we’re blogging about slow, family travel and sharing our relocation experiences. Read More
Missed flights abroad
International travel has become infinitely more complicated, time-consuming, and stressful during the pandemic—perhaps even more so as many countries start to welcome overseas visitors. To avoid missing a flight, passengers need to make sure they have all required entry documents, COVID test certifications, and other necessary paperwork squared away well in advance.
“We can’t stress this enough: Do your research and prepare your documentation ahead of time,” Orlando says. “In Europe, the reports are coming out fast and furious about confusion and 8-hour wait times, because people are trying to put together multiple forms of documentation and rules are changing every day.”
Air passengers traveling in Europe have the benefit of EC 261, one of the world’s most comprehensive passenger-rights regulations. Anyone traveling out of a European airport is covered, and EC 261 enables passengers to receive compensation between 250 and 600 euros (approximately $300-700) for many types of flight disruptions.
The situation becomes more complex if your missed flight isn’t the airline’s fault, underscoring the importance of arriving early at the airport. (Pro tip: Remember that European airlines mark time with the 24-hour clock, so for a U.S.-based traveler, a departure time of 17:15 is easily—and incorrectly—misread as 7:15 instead of the correct equivalent of 5:15 p.m.)
What if you still can’t catch yourflight?
Depending on the airline, travelers may be charged a rebooking fee to get on another flight. Some airlines may also charge the difference in airfare — meaning a missed flight can be a costly inconvenience.
JetBlue, for one, will try to waive the difference in airfare on confirmed travel (and charge only the applicable change fee) when they’re able to rebook travelers on a later departure.
Southwest, on the other hand, never charges change fees — but travelers may have to shoulder the fare difference.
If you arrive at the airport after your flight has closed or departed, take a minute to assess the flight schedule board. Look for later trips with the same airline, which can help you avoid additional fees (or forfeiting your entire remaining itinerary).
Present these options to a gate or check-in agent, which will help expedite the process.
Youre Going to Get There Soon!
Okay, we know this is easier said than done, but you’re trying to figure out what happens if you miss your flight, try to be positive. You’ve either missed your flight at your own fault or due to a force of nature it happened and there is a solution. Staying positive (instead of a grump), you’ll likely get staff who are much more willing to help you. Remember, that flat tire rule is up to the discretion of staff, if you’re rude to them, they may not extend it to you. You’ll get your final destination eventually, you might as well make the best of it for now.
No matter what situation you encounter with the airlines, it always makes sense to document everything that happens at the ticket counter. Get hard copies of everything, including the airline policies the agent applied to your situation.
Should you later decide to file a travel complaint, this paperwork will prove extremely useful.
If you file a travel insurance claim, lacking this documentation could prevent collecting money to which you are entitled.
2. Online Check-in:
With the technology advancements, everything has improved vastly and traveling is one of the major elements that has been drastically enhanced. Now you can not only do the online booking of your tickets but you can also check-in easily. Web check-in will help you in saving a lot of time after reaching the airport. This will probably help you in catching up the flight on time.
4. Get Yourself Prepared for the Security Line:
It is very important to pack all of your luggage in the correct manner. Pack all of the toiletries in the TSA approved containers. Use clear bags so that it is easily manageable for the security to check. Don’t wear shoes that are needed to be tied again and again, keep your electronics easily accessible for security purposes. If you follow this step it will save a lot of your time and you will get out of security checking easily and never miss your flight.
How do different causes of missing your flight affect your rights?
Now that you know what to do if you missed your flight, here’s a quick breakdown of what your rights are depending on what caused your missed flight. The reason for missing your flight matters, as it can affect how the airline handles your situation.
What happens if you miss your flight on purpose?
While it may come as a surprise to incredibly conscientious travelers who typically arrive at the airport three hours prior to their scheduled departure time, some travelers do in fact miss flights on purpose.
Though not common, this can be done as a way to score cheap flights. Deal hunters, for example, may find that it’s cheaper to book a flight with a connection where they want to go, rather than a flight directly to the desired destination.
The traveler will then hop off at the layover city and skip the remaining leg of the itinerary.
When travelers miss flights and do not notify the airline, the rest of the itinerary is almost always canceled. That means that if you are trying to get a flight deal by gaming the system, you might find yourself stranded, or without a return trip home.
Frequent fliers will not receive miles for trips booked and skipped, and certain offenders may even find themselves banned from that airline.
Missing a flight can be frustrating, but you have options to salvage your trip.
The path to take depends on whether missing the flight was your fault or the airlines. In either case, you need to act quickly to protect your trip and secure the next available seat on an upcoming flight. Be flexible in your approach and, most of all, always be kind to whoever you’re speaking with. A little kindness in a stressful situation can go a long way towards getting your trip back on track.
Feature photo by Dmitry Marchenko/EyeEm via Getty Images