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Iberia cancellation (LGW to MAD) without notice

Iberia cancellation (LGW to MAD) without notice

Old Feb 8, 20, 5:22 am
  #1  
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Angry Iberia cancellation (LGW to MAD) without notice

Hello,

I was booked on flight IB3715 from LGW to MAD on 05/02/20 which was apparently cancelled. I was already at London Gatwick airport when I saw something was wrong with my boarding card, as my flight was leaving at 10:50 but my boarding card did not show up as it had a departure time of 20:20. I had a connecting flight in MAD (MAD-PMI) that I would not be able to catch otherwise and an important meeting in Madrid on that day.

I tried to see someone at Iberia's check-in desks at Gatwick but there was nobody there. I had to call them to find out what was going on with my flight. They said my flight had suffered a cancellation and it was weird I was not notified (I received no SMS or email, not even one that might have gone to junk emails, to let me know about my cancellation). They offered me to put me on that 20:20 flight from LGW to MAD but I said that would not be possible as I had to catch another flight at 22:10 in MAD. They then offered to fly from London Heathrow that afternoon and they finally booked me on a 16:40 British Airways flight to MAD. They used the same booking reference I initially had.

I had to pay 20 GBP to get to London Heathrow from London Gatwick (a bit more if I add the Oyster card credit). When I got there, the assistant who helped me get my boarding card mentioned there had been some cancellations due to the fog in Gatwick (but Iberia never mentioned this during my call, they just said they did not know what the reason for the cancellation was), so not sure that was my case. I then went to the VIP Lounge for food using a free pass I got from AMEX (I mention this in case I am entitled to food and drink and this might be covered).

Once I landed at Madrid Barajas airport I went to the Iberia information desk and asked for a certificate of cancellation for my flight and they said they could not provide one as it had to be done online. I did that online just to find out today that they have closed my case saying "I am showing in their files as not boarded on that flight". They closed both my case for the cancellation certificate and the one for the compensation I opened.

Now I have two questions for you:

1) What is the best way to claim for compensation and to manage this whilst being treated seriously?
2) How much would I be entitled to taking into account European Air Travel Regulation?

My guess is there should be a compensation of 250 EUR especially taking into account that I was NEVER notified about the cancellation (especially not in the 14 days prior to my flight) and that is why I went to the airport on that day at that time. Also, the alternative transport option I took was over 6 hours after my initial flight, which caused me to miss an important work meeting. Also, there are transport costs related to this issue which I had to pay for myself to go from LGW to LHR.

Any help will be much appreciated - thank you!
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Old Feb 8, 20, 6:01 am
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Welcome to FT!

It seem that your flight was cancelled due to fog at LGW and that you were taken care of adequately, i.e. rebooked into the first available flight to MAD. There is no obligation for IB to pay compensation for cancellations caused by weather; it is extraordinary circumstances under the EU regulation. It doesn't change anything that apparently you weren't notified about the cancellation; it will get you nowhere.

You may be entitled to reimbursement of the travel costs incurred; you should apply to IB for reimbursement if you think it is worth the time/effort.
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Old Feb 8, 20, 9:38 am
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Originally Posted by SK AAR View Post
Welcome to FT!

It seem that your flight was cancelled due to fog at LGW and that you were taken care of adequately, i.e. rebooked into the first available flight to MAD. There is no obligation for IB to pay compensation for cancellations caused by weather; it is extraordinary circumstances under the EU regulation. It doesn't change anything that apparently you weren't notified about the cancellation; it will get you nowhere.

You may be entitled to reimbursement of the travel costs incurred; you should apply to IB for reimbursement if you think it is worth the time/effort.
Thank you SK AAR!

How do you know for sure it was due to fog? I mean, is there any official source that shows this information? Iberia was not able to tell me, even if the BA assistant did suggest it might have been due to fog.

It was not the first available flight to Madrid but one that allowed me enough time to get to the other airport, which I had to pay for myself. Even if not 100% obliged to pay for compensation for cancellations due to weather conditions, I believe there should be compensation due to the fact that they did not comply with my right to information, as per, again, EU law. They had an obligation to keep me informed, which they did not.

It would be good to perhaps check whether any other flights were cancelled or delayed around my departure time from Gatwick, so if any other flights went ahead, that means my flight could have also departed and the company would be liable to compensate me.

Last edited by beckoa; Feb 13, 20 at 8:31 pm Reason: merged consecutive posts
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Old Feb 13, 20, 8:32 pm
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Welcome to Flyertalk uksergio and the Information Desk.

Please follow the redirect as we relocate your query.

~beckoa, co-moderator Information Desk
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Old Feb 14, 20, 3:54 am
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Originally Posted by uksergio View Post
Thank you SK AAR!

How do you know for sure it was due to fog? I mean, is there any official source that shows this information? Iberia was not able to tell me, even if the BA assistant did suggest it might have been due to fog.

It was not the first available flight to Madrid but one that allowed me enough time to get to the other airport, which I had to pay for myself. Even if not 100% obliged to pay for compensation for cancellations due to weather conditions, I believe there should be compensation due to the fact that they did not comply with my right to information, as per, again, EU law. They had an obligation to keep me informed, which they did not.

It would be good to perhaps check whether any other flights were cancelled or delayed around my departure time from Gatwick, so if any other flights went ahead, that means my flight could have also departed and the company would be liable to compensate me.
It's no use checking which flights departed Gatwick, as the IB Express plane will have needed to have flown up from MAD and ATC could have easily told them no. You are almost certainly going to end up in an extraordinary circumstances excuse unless you can somehow prove that the airplane went tech in MAD.

You are due duty of care, which would be reimbursement of the transfer costs between LGW and LHR plus any additional meals, etc.

Otherwise you can take them to court or to one of the newspapers. In a different case, BA have repeatedly refused to pay me EU261 compensation for failing to notify me (via an OTA) of a flight cancellation. I dumped it onto a vulture claims firm and I'm still waiting for resolution 6 months later. Not really worth the effort IMO.
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Old Feb 14, 20, 4:35 am
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Originally Posted by uksergio View Post
1) What is the best way to claim for compensation and to manage this whilst being treated seriously?
2) How much would I be entitled to taking into account European Air Travel Regulation?
Welcome to Flyertalk and welcome to the Iberia forum uksergio. There definitely was a lot fog on 5 February, I was also in LGW that day and it was pretty visible I would have said. There were dozens of diversions that day in London affecting all the airports. Here is one thread illustrating that from the BA forum:
BA 114 JFK-LHR in holding pattern over Wales?

So I don't think you're going to get anywhere for the delay compensation. There is provision for Right to Care which still apples, and so you could claim your extra transport costs to get to Heathrow, however that's slightly uncertain in terms of EC261's wording, since it could be argued that you chose another replacement service rather than accept the one that Iberia Express put you on. It can be argued both ways since clearly there was a better alternative from another airport. You would have had the right to cancel the reservation altogether, get a full refund from Iberia Express and use the money towards whatever services were running from LGW, but that's not possible now. So what I would do is contact Iberia Express Customer Relations and ask for a refund of the travel cost without necessarily insisting they pay it under EC261, hopefully they would be willing to do that. I would stick to the actual cost of the transfer (which I guess was about 11), the rest of the 20 is still available to you or can be refunded by Transport for London.
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