Northern Ireland

Aer Lingus flight cancellations advice issued to thousands of holidaymakers

Upwards of 20,000 passengers are expected to be impacted by cancellations this week

Aer Lingus planes at Dublin Airport. Picture by Artur Widak/PA
Aer Lingus planes at Dublin Airport. Picture by Artur Widak/PA

The Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) have issued advice to the thousands of passengers impacted by Aer Lingus flight cancellations this week.

124 flights have been cancelled amid staff shortages as pilots begin industrial action from Wednesday.

The airline is contacting passengers to offer a refund or alternative booking.

The IAA is advising passengers of their rights for flights cancelled or subject to a long delay due to industrial action by pilots.

Air Passenger Rights under EU Regulation EC 261 / 2004

Flight Cancellations

In the event that your flight is cancelled then your air carrier must offer you the choice between the following

  • Re-routing as soon as possible
  • Re-routing at a later date at your convenience
  • A refund

If you choose the first option then your air carrier must provide you with care and assistance whilst you wait for the alternative flight. These include

  • Meals and refreshments in reasonable relation to the waiting time
  • Hotel accommodation where an overnight stay becomes necessary
  • Transport between the hotel accommodation and the airport and two free telephone calls/ access to email

Flight Delays

If your flight is subject to a long delay - over 2/3/4 hours depending on destination - your airline must provide you with the care and assistance described above.

In addition, if your flight is delayed by more than 5 hours, it must offer you the choice between:

  • Continuing with your journey
  • A refund of the cost of your ticket.

Please note that it is not possible for passengers to travel and avail of the full refund.

If your airline does not provide the care and assistance described above, passengers should make their own reasonable arrangements and retain all receipts in the process.

Passengers are advised to then submit copies of these receipts to their air carrier for reimbursement.


Compensation is payable in certain circumstances where the cause of the delay or cancellation is within the control of the airline, industrial action by the airline’s own staff is considered within its control.

You are not due compensation if the airline gives you 2 weeks’ notice of the cancellation.

If you receive between 7 days and 2 weeks’ notice and your arrival times are later than 4 hours on the reroute then you may be due compensation from the airline.

You are entitled to compensation if you receive less than 7 days’ notice and your arrival time are later than 2 hours on the reroute.

The amount of compensation payable depends on the distance of the flight. If the flight is classed as:

  • Short haul, the amount payable is €250 per person
  • Medium haul, the amount payable is €400 per person
  • Long haul, the amount payable is €600 per person

Additional Information

Aer Lingus should provide passengers with information on their rights and entitlements under EU Regulation EC 261/ 2004.

In situations where an air carrier is unable to provide a suitable alternative flight and passengers travel at their own expense with an alternative air carrier, the original air carriers liability is limited to a full refund of the original flight costs.

Compensation may also be due, as outlined in the compensation section above.

More information can be found here