Is there any compensation for flight cancelation due to natural disasters?

When there is a natural disaster such as a volcanic eruption, it can result in flight cancelations. If the occurrence is in the area of the airport, all outgoing and incoming flights will be stopped. If the disaster strikes at your arrival airport, your flight will be canceled. 


What means a natural disaster?

The natural disasters include earthquakes, tsunamis, avalanches, and other devastating incidents that are beyond anyone’s control. It is also not within the control of airline companies. If a flight is canceled or deleted due to a natural disaster, the airline cannot be held liable for the unexpected event. There is no claim that can be collected as the passengers’ losses are not the fault of the airline. 

In 2010, the Eyjafjallajökull volcano in Iceland erupted. Due to the volcanic ashfall that spread far and wide, air travel was disrupted. The air-traffic that was shut-down is known to be the largest since World War II. The reason why the airplanes were not allowed to take flight was because of the damage that the volcanic ash can cause an aircraft carrier’s engines. The shut down lasted for over a week, stranding passengers in Europe and in other parts of the world.

In 2011, the Haneda and Narita airports in Tokyo, Japan were closed as there was an earthquake. It was an 8.9-magnitude quake that triggered ten-meter tall waves. There were tsunami warnings issued to places in the Pacific region to include Alaska and Hawaii. Many airlines canceled their flights to these two airports due to the disaster. 

A matter of safety

Restricting flights when there is a disaster that could affect the safety of those flying and airplanes is more than just common sense. There are flight restrictions aviation policies that are to be followed. When flights are disrupted in such a wide-scale manner, the airline industry suffers great losses. Not only do the tickets have to be refunded or rebooked, but the operations alone make airlines, airports, and other related industries have a loss of income. Passengers get stranded, and there is no air claim that can be made for the flight cancellation, as the tickets during these kinds of situations will be refunded or rebooked. It is also not necessary to make an air claim as one has to understand that there was a calamity that required the flight to be canceled for their own safety. 

You have rights

Getting compensation is similar to having a non-life insurance policy without paying a premium price yearly. To obtain flight compensation from a claim arising from flight delays and cancellations that an airline is directly responsible for can be considered as protection as stated in the EU regulation 261/2004.  A passenger has rights and the said Flight Compensation Regulation takes it further to ensure that airline passengers will be compensated according to the distance of their flight – check here -, and not according to their ticket price.

If your flight was delayed or canceled, you must get to find out the reason why so you know if you can get compensation by making an air claim right away.