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Air passenger rights

Air passenger rights are protected by European Regulation No. 261/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council. Read below how you can assert your rights if your flight has been delayed, overbooked or otherwise affected.

All air passengers have a bill of rights if the flight has at least a departure, arrival, and / or transit at a Spanish airport, according to European Regulation nº 261/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council. Consequently, when such rights are violated, the passenger is entitled to a claim that may entail compensation, whether economic or otherwise. On the other hand, if the passenger expresses a disagreement with any of the services provided by any of the entities related to his flight, but does not have the right to make a complaint, he has the right to submit a complaint or suggestion.

If you do not present a claim and / or make a complaint concerning the given service, the quality of this service can neither be verified nor improved, as the responsible persons / entities cannot be informed. As a consequence, you will lose the opportunity of obtaining any compensation.

The right for placing a complaint may result from the following cases

In the following we show you a list of the most frequent cases, in which you have a right to complain and which are usually presented to airline offices, airports or other entities concerning the journey, e.g. travel agencies, tour operators etc. In order to accept the complaints, based on those cases, certain conditions have to be fulfilled. This means that you have to fulfill your obligations as a passenger, whilethe passenger rights have to be violated without any reason. Please take into consideration, that the situations described hereunder, could occur without intention -for example due to major forces- in this case, any complaint shall be precluded.

  • An insufficient, confusing or neutral answer or the refusal of the same.
  • Refusal to go on board due to overbooking, delay or cancellation of the flight.
  • Refusal on the right to make a complaint.
  • Incidents concerning the flight ticket, its emission or modification of the air class.
  • A delay in the departure or arrival of the flight.
  • Lack of assistance in case of a delay in departure.
  • Missing the airplane or the flight connection.
  • Damage or loss of the baggage.
  • Discrimination of passengers with a handicap or with reduced mobility.
  • Lack of safety at the airport or on board of the aircraft.
  • Lack in the services at the airport or in the aircraft.
  • Accidents and or injuries.
  • ...more cases.

Those passengers affected by cancellations can use specialised complaint services and receive financial compensation.

Passenger with cancelled flight
Passenger with a delayed or cancelled flight at an airport

Before you make a complaint you might make sure that you have a right to do so, fulfilling the conditions for each individual case. The passenger has an obligation to know his rights if he wants to file a complaint. In this case he may ask for a document at any airport in Spain, in which his rights are described, including some advice about how to act. In the contrary, please do not hesitate to contact the Spanish National Aviation Agency (Agencia Estatal de Seguridad Aérea - AESA).

How to file a complaint

Please do not leave the airport or the area, where the incident has occurred, without informing yourself previously about the procedure of filing a complaint (means, channel, period of time, proofs, etc.). Some complaints have to be done on-site, while others can be dealt with within a reasonable time period by normal mail or internet.

For this reason, depending on the entity concerned, you may dispose of sheets of complaint at the check-in counters of the airlines, at the information desks of the airport or in the airport shops. You may also download and print them if it is not necessary to present the complaint on-site.

Please be very precise when you describe the incident and keep all the related documents, even if you think it is not necessary. You may need the documentation again in case you do not receive an answer within the agreed period of time or maybe you are not happy with the answer, and want to lodge an appeal before the courts or contact with the National Aviation Agency AESA (case of appeal against the airline).

Additional information:

Due to the complexity and the constant evolution of the regulations and the laws, the information given herewith may not be complete, incorrect, incomplete or not yet updated. Therefore it is within your responsibility to do everything in your power in order to gather the necessary information.

Please find more information (details of each case, compensations, regulations, directions and phone numbers, etc.) at , in the sections about passenger rights.