What are your rights when an airline cancels your flight?
You are entitled to get your money back if the airline cancels your flight. You don't need to accept a voucher in this case.
The airline must refund the money within 7 days source but what do you do when the airline does not respond to your emails and letters and their hotline isn't doing much either?
It happened to me when Easyjet cancelled a flight in July 2020. I was supposed to fly from France to Berlin in September 2020 but Easyjet cancelled the flight. They offered me a voucher to buy another flight or a refund.
I filled out the refund form on their website and waited for Easyjet to wire me 189.- Euro. I reminded them by mail again in October 2020.
Your options if the airline does not pay
I decided to go with a debt collector when I didn't hear back from Easyjet three months after they cancelled my flight. Please note that this is only an option if the airline cancels the flight. You might think about travel cancellation insurance to be on the safe side if you can't travel for other reasons.
The first options I googled were agencies which help enforce flight rights:
These services are probably the fastest option to get a refund. The issue I have with these services is that you have to pay them while I wanted the airline to pay for the debt collection. I wanted all my money back and let Easyjet pay for the charges.
How to use a lawyer to get your money back
I picked a lawyer in my neighbourhood and paid another 81.- Euro to him to handle the case.
Easyjet did not react to any of his letters so we brought this to court.
The Amtsgericht Wedding charged me another 105.- Euro to handle the case. There was no hearing and in March 2021 a judgement was passed which Easyjet accepted. I received the first chunk of the money in April 2021.
The last chunk of money was received in July 2021, more than 12 months after my flight was cancelled by the airline.
Use a local lawyer to get your money back when airlines refuse to pay after they cancelled the flight
- if you don't need the money immediately,
- if you want all your money back and want the airline to pay for the lawyer.