Getting compensated for dirty hotel rooms and delayed flights

More than once, you may have been on the receiving end of a delayed/cancelled flight or a holiday package that didn’t quite turn out the way you had planned or booked it. While you may curse your bad luck, chances are you may not know about your legal rights that entitle you to claim compensation for these situations. Here is a brief insight into when, where and how you can claim these compensations in a fair manner.

When are you entitled to compensation?

You may be entitled to travel compensation in the following cases.

  • If the airplane you were about to travel on is delayed for more than the stipulated amount of time or is cancelled.
  • If the airlines with which you booked your tickets goes out of business before your date of travel.
  • If your luggage is delayed or lost in transit.
  • If the holiday you booked is lower in value than what you paid for (for example, you book a deluxe room but are given a standard room upon arrival).
  • If the hotel or airlines entitles you to pay extra money for inconveniences or additional amenities (for example the airlines asks you to pay extra for another ticket aboard another flight to the same destination or if the hotel asks you to pay extra for a room in another hotel due to overbooking).
  • If there is a problem in the holiday that leads to loss of enjoyment (for instance, your all-inclusive deal includes access to the swimming pool and fitness facilities, and you arrive only to notice both of them closed for the entire duration of your trip).

How can you claim compensation for these issues?

Here are a few tips that can come in handy when dealing with issues like these.

  • Be quick

The early bird catches the worm in this case. If your flight has been cancelled, rush to the first available gate agent you set your eyes on. The first few passengers always get higher chances of being boarded on flights (flying to the same or nearby destination) with available seats.

In the case of accommodation, make sure you point out any and every issue then and there itself to the manager on duty. There is no point in dealing with these issues after your stay when the hotel will only be interested in getting the room and services ready for the next guest.

  • Don’t shy away from asking

Be polite but persuasive when you ask for compensation for any of the issues mentioned above. Remember, no airline or hotel will be willing to part with compensation unless you claim for it. So while you need to be polite about your query, you need to be persuasive enough to make the concerned people understand about your needs and demands. If the response is not good, don’t be afraid to point it out, citing that a poor response will definitely not build goodwill in such a situation.

  • Stick to the Issue

Don’t wander around the bush by explaining about all the deadlines you are missing. Be direct and stick to the issue at hand. If you tend to beat around the bush, the airlines or hotel may take it up as a tool to bypass the major issue and try to deal with the minor problems in the hope to steer away from a bigger compensation. So don’t let distractions get in your way as you address the main issue at hand.

  • Remain Clear about your Demands

Almost every other airlines or hotel will come up with some form of compensation to ease your displeasure. However, more often than not, what they offer will not be of any use to you in the current situation. For instance, offering you a two day holiday for free in the next two months is not going to solve the termite infestation in your room today. So make sure you remain clear about your demands and don’t deviate from them until what they call as a ‘gesture of goodwill’ actually helps solve the problem you are facing now.

A lot of travelers are unwary of the fact that they can claim compensation for delayed/cancelled flights or for uncomfortable hotel stays. These pointers will help a traveler know more about his/her legal rights when it comes to claiming compensation for these issues in addition to offering him/her the best possible ways to get compensated for the same.

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