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Passengers’ rights



The European Union has established passengers’ rights regarding airline companies and works to promote them. These are the main rights passengers are entitled to.

Flight and booking information

When you check about a flight or make a booking through a travel agency in the European Union, all passengers are entitled to receive neutral and accurate information:

Unless a passengers requests otherwise, a travel agency should provide them with neutral information on the basis of the computerised booking system, in particular regarding:

  • The different options available to make a trip in the following order:
    • - non-stop flights.
    • - flights with intermediate stops, but without a change of aircraft.
    • - connecting flights.
  • All the fares available from different airlines, as displayed.

A travel agent must give passengers direct access to the information shown by the computer system if they request it, either by allowing them to see the screen or by printing it out.

If the ticket is booked through a travel agent or directly with an airline, they must pass on to the passenger all information available in the computer system about:

  • the identity of the air carrier which will actually provide the service, as opposed to the carrier mentioned on the ticket.
  • Changes of aircraft during the journey.
  • Stops en route during the journey.
  • Transfers between airports during the journey.

More information

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Denied boarding (General considerations)

EC Regulation 261/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council, of 11 February 2004, in force since 17 February 2005, establishes common rules for Airline Companies on compensation and assistance to passengers in the event of denied boarding, cancellations or long delays of flights.

This Regulation applies to:

As long as passengers have a confirmed reservation on the flight, and, except in the case of cancellation, arrived in time for check-in as indicated on the ticket or, if no time is so indicated, no less than 45 minutes prior to the scheduled flight departure time:

  • Passengers departing from an airport located in the territory of a Member State to which the Treaty applies.
  • Passengers departing from an airport located in a third country to an airport situated in the territory of a Member State to which the Treaty applies, unless they received benefits or compensation or were given assistance in that third country.
  • It shall not apply to passengers travelling free of charge or at a reduced fare not available directly or indirectly to the public.

Operating air carriers shall give priority and pay particular attention, and this is what we always do at Iberia, to the needs of persons with reduced mobility and any persons accompanying them, as well as to the needs of unaccompanied children.

Denied boarding

  1. 1. Conditions for passengers denied boarding

    In the event that there are more passengers with a confirmed booking on a flight than available seats, so long as the check-in procedures have been performed with the minimum time required, Iberia shall ask for volunteers to surrender their confirmed seat in exchange for agreed compensation and the assistance mentioned in section 1.2.

    If an insufficient number of volunteers comes forward and other passengers are forced to be denied boarding against their will, these passengers shall be entitled to compensation and assistance. When there is a justified reason for denying boarding, passengers shall not be entitled to any type of compensation and/or assistance. Boarding may be denied in any of the following situations:

    • (a) When carrying the passenger and/or his or her baggage could endanger safety, health, comfort or integrity or the aircraft or any of its parts, or the comfort of other passengers or crew. In particular, if the passenger makes any threat, adopts intimidating behaviour or uses aggressive or insulting language with ground personnel and/or crew.
    • (b) When the passenger’s physical or mental state, including a state caused by the consumption of alcohol, drugs or medications, may involve a danger or even a risk to him or herself, other passengers, crew or property.
    • (c) When the passenger has upset security, order and/or discipline during check-in or, in the case of connecting flights, during a previous flight and the carrier has sound reasons to believe that this behaviour could be repeated.
    • (d) When the passenger refuses to submit to the anticipated security checks and/or refuses to duly prove his or her identity.
    • (e) Any other similar situation based on reasons of health, safety or lack of travel documents, as long as there is due cause and could endanger the health of passengers and/or crew, the safety of passengers and/or crew or when the passenger does not present the travel documents required by any competent authority in accordance with the approved laws in force in each State.
    1. 1.1. Compensation for denied boarding
      • Compensation may be paid in cash, by electronic bank transfer, bank orders or bank cheques or, with the signed agreement of the passenger, in travel vouchers and/or other services.
      • The electronic vouchers that Iberia provides in these situations may be exchanged for cash or a travel voucher (MCO) of a higher value and may be used to buy tickets from Iberia.
        A Flights under 1,500 km 250 EUR* or MCO
        B Intra-Community flights of more than 1,500 km and others between 1,500 and 3,500 km 400 EUR* or MCO
        C Other flights not included in the points above 600 EUR* or MCO

        * Compensation shall be reduced by 50% when the arrival time of the alternative flight is no more than 2 hours (flights included in section A), 3 hours (flights included in section B) or 4 hours (flights included in section C).

    2. 1.2. Assistance for denied boarding
      • Passengers may choose between:
        • - Carriage to their final destination, in comparable transport conditions, as soon as possible or on a later date at the passenger’s convenience, depending on available seats.
        • - Reimbursement** within 7 days for the part or parts of the journey not made, and for the part or parts already made if the flight is no longer serving any purpose in relation to the passenger's original travel plan and a return flight to the first point of departure.
      • In addition, passengers shall also be offered free of charge:
        • - Meals and refreshments in a reasonable relation to the waiting time.
        • - Two telephone calls, telex or fax messages, or e-mails.
        • - If it were necessary to stay overnight: accommodation, where appropriate, and transport between the airport and place of accommodation.
  2. 2. Flight cancellations
    1. 2.1. Compensation for cancellation
      • The Regulation provides for excluding obligations on operating air carriers paying compensation to passengers when:
        • - If it can be proven that the cancellation is due to extraordinary circumstances that could not have been avoided even if all reasonable measures had been taken (cases of political instability, meteorological conditions incompatible with the operation of the flight concerned, security risks, unexpected flight safety shortcomings, airport congestion, air traffic management and strikes that affect air carrier operations).
        • - If passengers are informed of the cancellation at least two weeks before the scheduled time of departure.
        • - Passengers are informed of the cancellation between two weeks and seven days before the scheduled time of departure and are offered re-routing, allowing them to depart no more than two hours before the scheduled time of departure and to reach their final destination no more than four hours after the scheduled time of arrival.
        • - Passengers are informed of the cancellation less than seven days before the scheduled time of departure and are offered re-routing, allowing them to depart no more than one hour before the scheduled time of departure and to reach their final destination less than two hours after the scheduled time of arrival.
      • If none of these circumstances occur, passengers with confirmed reservations for a flight that has been cancelled shall be entitled to:
        • - 125 euros for flights of less than 1,500 km, when the re-routing offered has an arrival time at the destination of no more than two hours after the one initially scheduled on the reserved flight; or 250 euros ¡f the delay is more than two hours.
        • - 200 euros for all intra-Community flights of more than 1,500 km and all other flights between 1,500 and 3,500 km, when the re-routing offered has an arrival time at the destination of no more than three hours after the one initially scheduled on the reserved flight; or 400 euros ¡f the delay is more than three hours.
        • - 300 euros for all flights not included in the points above, when the re-routing offered has an arrival time at the destination of no more than four hours after the one initially scheduled on the reserved flight; or 600 euros ¡f the delay is more than four hours.
        • Compensation can be paid in cash, by electronic bank transfer, bank orders or bank cheques or, with the signed agreement of the passenger, in travel vouchers and/or other services.
        • - The electronic vouchers that Iberia provides in these situations may be exchanged for cash or a travel voucher (MCO) of a higher value and may be used to buy tickets from Iberia.
        • - To begin to process your compensation, we would ask you to contact our Customer Service Centre via the telephone numbers or addresses you will find at the end of this brochure.
    2. 2.2. Assistance for cancellation
      • Passengers may choose between:
        • - Carriage to their final destination, in comparable transport conditions, as soon as possible or on a later date at the passenger’s convenience, depending on available seats.
        • - Reimbursement** within 7 days for the part or parts of the journey not made, and for the part or parts already made if the flight is no longer serving any purpose in relation to the passenger's original travel plan and a return flight to the first point of departure.
      • In addition, passengers shall also be offered free of charge:
        • - Meals and refreshments in a reasonable relation to the waiting time.
        • - Two telephone calls, telex or fax messages, or e-mails.
        • - If it is necessary to spend the night: accommodation, where appropriate, and transport between the airport and place of accommodation.
  3. 3. Flight delays
    1. 3.1. Assistance for delays
      • When IBERIA anticipates a delay of:
        • - Two hours or more on flights of up to 1,500 km.
        • - Three hours or more on intra-Community flights of more than 1,500 km and all other flights between 1,500 and 3,500 km.
        • - Four hours or more in the case of all other flights.
      • Passengers shall be offered free of charge:
        • - Meals and refreshments in a reasonable relation to the waiting time.
        • - Two telephone calls, telex or fax messages, or e-mails.
        • - If it is necessary to spend the night: accommodation, where appropriate, and transport between the airport and place of accommodation.
      • When the delay is more than five hours, passengers may choose between reimbursement** within 7 days for the part or parts of the journey not made, and for the part or parts already made if the flight is no longer serving any purpose in relation to the passenger's original travel plan and a return flight to the first point of departure.
  4. 4. Upgrading and downgrading

    If an operating air carrier places a passenger in a class lower than that for which the ticket was purchased, it shall within seven days reimburse** the following proportions of the price bracket or brackets in which this occurs:

    • 30% for all flights of 1,500 km or less.
    • 50% for all intra-Community flights of more than 1,500 km, and for all other flights between 1,500 and 3,500 km.
    • 75% for all flights not included in the previous points.

** Reimbursements: To begin the reimbursement procedure in the cases mentioned, the ticket purchaser should contact the office, Agency or Point of Sale where the ticket was purchased.

Compensation and periods affecting baggage incidents

The reason for compensation is objectively based on the accident of damage and will proceed, up to the liability limits established in this chapter “in proportion to the damage suffered” and only if the airline company did not take all reasonable measures to prevent the damage or it was impossible to take said measures (EC Regulations 2027/1997 and 889/2002).

for domestic and international traffic
DELAY

Basic Care:
Delivery of the OVERNIGHT KIT to NON RESIDENT passengers at the stopover where the incident occurred which meant they had to spend the night without their baggage.

Compensation for Delay:
Evaluation, upon the presentation of bills, of expenses related to not having had the personal belongings that were in the baggage, up to 1,131 special drawing rights per passenger (*).

With a prior special declaration value:
The declared amount, with premium paid.

(Art. 22 of the Montreal Convention and Annexes to EC Regulations 2027/1997 and 889/2002).

MISPLACEMENT
(See NOTE 1)

Without a prior value declaration:
Up to 1,131 special drawing rights per passenger (*).

With a prior special declaration value:
The declared amount, with premium paid.

(Art. 22 of the Montreal Convention and Annexes to EC Regulations 2027/1997 and 889/2002).

DETERIORATION
(See NOTE 2)

The available options will be offered in this order:

  1. 1. Repair of the damaged item or
  2. 2. Replacement for another similar one or
  3. 3. Up to 1,131 special drawing rights per passenger (*).

(Art. 22 of the Montreal Convention and Annexes to EC Regulations 2027/1997 and 889/2002).

NOTES
  1. 1. The amount already paid in compensation for delay shall be deducted from the resulting compensation amount.
  2. 2. These solutions shall apply in the same order of preference and according to the possibilities of each case.

* The special drawing rights value, according to the definition from the International Monetary Fund, fluctuates daily, which is why the equivalent in force on the day of the incident will be applied. You can ask for information from our services or consult the Bank of Spain website (www.bde.es)

Time limits concerning baggage incidents:

  • “Receipt by the person entitled to delivery of checked baggage without complaint (opening of the PIR at the corresponding counter) is prima facie evidence that the same has been delivered in good condition and in accordance with the document of carriage” (Art. 31 of the Montreal Convention).
  • In addition, the passenger “must put it in writing to the airline company as soon as possible. If the damaged baggage is checked baggage (…) within seven days, and in the case of delay, twenty-one days, in both cases from the date on which the baggage was placed at his or her disposal” (Art. 31 of the Montreal Convention and Annexes to EC Regulations 2027/1997 and 889/2002).
Purpose of the period for domestic and international traffic
To lodge a compensation claim:

Delay. . . . . . . 21 days.
Misplacement. . . . . . . 21 days.
Deterioration. . . . . . 7 days.

(Art. 22 of the Montreal Convention and Annexes to EC Regulations 2027/1997 and 889/2002).

To exercise the claim action:

Expires after TWO YEARS.

(Art. 22 of the Montreal Convention and Annexes to EC Regulations 2027/1997 and 889/2002).

Items that should not be carried in your baggage:

In accordance with Iberia’s General Carriage Conditions, as referred to on the carriage contract (ticket) signed by the two parties, passengers should not include in their checked baggage items considered dangerous, fragile, perishable or valuable (money, jewels, precious metals, computers, personal electronic devices, negotiable documents, transferable securities or other valuable objects, business documents, passports and other identification documents or documents of proof).