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American Airlines Flight Delay Compensation

American Airlines flight delay compensation.

How to claim for delayed flight? And how much can you get?

You might already know that you are protected by European laws when flying with European airlines. But what about non-European airlines, such as American Airlines? Even though AA is registered in the US, you are protected on some of its flights. If it’s a flight departing from the EU, EEA or UK, and it gets heavily delayed, you are entitled to receive care from the airline, and, in some situations, flight delay compensation. How to claim compensation for a delayed flight?

One of the options is to let professionals deal with this.

Or, you can pursue flight delay compensation on your own.

1. American Airlines Flight Delay Compensation: EU Regulations

Overall, the EU flight delay compensation rules are simple.

These rules are almost the same both in the EU and the UK. There are regulations in the EU and UK that establish rules on compensation.

According to these regulations, if you reach your destination 3 or more hours later than scheduled, and it is due to the airline’s fault, you have a right to delay compensation. In case of non-EU and non-UK airlines such as American Airlines, it applies only to flights departing from Europe.

You might receive up to 600 euro per person (per flight).

Could you be entitled to American Airlines flight delay compensation?

Yes, if your flight meets these criteria:

  • Delay is 3 or more hours;
  • Delay is due to the airline’s fault;
  • Fight is from a European airport.

By Europe and EU here on this page (and on this website in general) we mean all EU Member States, the United Kingdom (UK), Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Martinique, Reunion, Mayotte, Saint Martin (French Antilles), the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, Iceland, Norway, and Switzerland.

1.1 Extraordinary Circumstances

There are situations when you aren’t entitled to compensation. 

If, for example, your flight is delayed due to “extraordinary circumstances”.

These situations are out of the airline’s control. It’s something no airline has control of. Examples of extraordinary circumstances: bad weather, natural disasters, strikes unrelated to the airline, civil or political unrest, terrorism threat, and security issues at the airport.

If your American Airlines flight is delayed due to any of these events, you can’t get flight delay compensation. The same applies to flight cancellations.

If you are claiming compensation yourself, double check what you’re told (if your claim is rejected). Because not always airlines are telling the right reason for delay.

The airline claims your flight was delayed due to bad weather. Check if it really was delayed due to bad weather. Check what other airlines were doing at the same time when your flight got heavily delayed. Were there other flights operating from the same airport? Ask for proof and be persistent when claiming compensation yourself. If not the airline might wrongly deny your claim.

If this sounds like a hassle, hand your case over to professionals. They will check your flight on your behalf. If compensation is due, they will claim compensation too.

1.2 How to Calculate the Delay Time?

What really matters is the time of arrival at your destination.

This applies both to direct flights and connecting flights.

Always calculate the delay time at the moment when you arrive. If you have a connecting flight, calculate the delay time at your final destination (your last stop), not at layover airports.

Another thing to remember — your actual time of arrival is the moment, when the doors of the aircraft are opened, not the moment of landing.

1.3 Right to Care

According to European regulations, affected passengers have a right to care.

If you are travelling with American Airlines, it applies to their flights departing from Europe. If your flight is delayed, and you have to wait 3+ hours at the airport, you have a right to receive care from the airline. The same applies to flight overbookings and last-minute flight cancellations. 

American Airlines must offer you free meals and drinks in a reasonable relation to the waiting time, two free phone calls, e-mails or faxes. If the flight is delayed overnight, you should be offered free accommodation and transport from and to the airport as well. 

All passengers are eligible for this type of care from the airline.

Entering hotel room
Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

2. How to Claim American Airlines Compensation For Delayed Flight?

How to claim flight delay compensation American Airlines owes you?

There are two ways you can do it online.

One of the options is to contact American Airlines yourself. Use the contact form on American Airlines’s website to request flight delay compensation. Make sure you mention your rights in accordance to European law. Mention how much later did you arrive at your final destination, and what was the reason for delay. Wait for your compensation. Keep in mind that it might take a while until you receive it. Unfortunately, it’s a lengthy process. 

The second option is — legal representation.

It’s the easiest (and hassle-free) of the two options.

In this case everything is done by a team of legal professionals of a flight compensation company. You need to fill in just one flight delay compensation claim form, and the rest is handled on your behalf.

When choosing this option, here is all you will have to do:

Go to
this page

Fill in a claim form

Upload documents*

Sign online

And that’s it — the rest is handled by professionals.

* Your boarding pass and passport or ID copy.

Read more:

2.1 How Long Does It Take?

No matter how you proceed, it isn’t a short process.

It’s not uncommon to get compensation after a few months.

If you claim compensation with the help of a flight compensation company, it might take less time, because it is done by a team of professionals. If you are claiming compensation on your own, it might take a while until you figure it out.

In short — it’s a lengthy process no matter how you claim. It’s better to be prepared that you will get the money after some time. 2-3 months at least. But it could be longer than that.

Euro banknotes
Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

3. How Much Can You Claim?

The compensation amount is fixed and range from €250 to €600.

How to calculate your American Airlines delayed flight compensation?

Use this simple flight delay compensation calculator.

When your destination is within the EU/UK:


If the distance of your flight is
up to 1,500 km


If the distance of your flight is between 1,500 – 3,500 km

When your destination is outside the EU/UK:


If the distance of your flight is
up to 1,500 km


If the distance of your flight is between 1,500 – 3,500 km


If the distance of your flight is more than 3,500 km

There’s one exception. When the flight distance is 3500+ kilometres and you reach your destination 3 to 4 hours later than planned, you are entitled only to 50% of the compensation amount (that means €300, not €600).

3.1 American Airlines Voucher Refund or Cash?

You might be offered a voucher instead of American Airlines flight delay compensation.

But do you have to accept it? If it’s an American Airlines flight departing from Europe, you can ask for a bank transfer. This is the law in Europe. You don’t have to accept any vouchers.

American Airlines Flight Delay Compensation: FAQ

My flight was cheap. I booked it during sales. Will it affect my compensation claim?


The price of the ticket doesn’t matter. It won’t lower your chances of getting compensation. Nor it will affect compensation amount.

Remember — you are paid for the inconvenience.

What if I don’t have travel insurance? Can I still claim compensation?

You don’t need insurance to receive compensation.

All thanks to the Regulation EC 261/2004 (and Regulation UK261). 

If your flight is 3+ hours late, you might have a right to flight delay compensation from American Airlines. You don’t need to provide any insurance papers. 

Can my child get compensation from American Airlines?

Yes, absolutely.

The passenger’s age doesn’t matter. If you are entitled to compensation, your child/baby will be too. Your child will get the same amount. If it’s a 600 euro compensation, you both will get it — you and your child. If you are travelling with a family, all family members will get compensation. As long as your flight is eligible for compensation.

The same rules apply to infants without a dedicated seat.

Can I claim compensation for someone else (e.g., my friend, relative, or family member)?

Yes, you can.

Even if you weren’t on that flight yourself.

As long as you have a copy of their boarding pass and passport/ID.

Also, they will need to sign a couple of documents. 

How far back can I claim compensation?

It depends on the laws of the country.

In many countries across the globe, especially Europe, you can claim compensation even for old flights. If your flight was 2-3 years ago, you still might be able to make a claim.

What to do if American Airlines is refusing to pay compensation?

The airline is refusing to pay compensation.

How can you proceed? Is it even possible? Yes!

There are two options. The easiest way is to hand over your case to a flight compensation company. They will continue the process on your behalf.

Or, you can contact the national enforcement body of the country your flight was from. There are national enforcement bodies in all the EU Member states.

EU – Non-EU Flights, Tourists

I’m flying to the EU from a country outside the EU. Can I get UK/EU flight delay compensation?

If you’re flying with American Airlines then no, you can’t.

European regulations only cover American Airlines flights departing from European airports.

I’m flying from the EU to a country outside the EU. Can I get UK/EU flight delay compensation?

Yes, you can. 

The same applies to all American Airlines flights from the UK.

I am not a European citizen. Can I get compensation?


Your nationality doesn’t matter. 

If your flight is eligible for compensation, you will get it even if you are not European.

Other Situations

American Airlines provided me with a free hotel stay and a free replacement flight. Can I still get compensation?

Yes, if the flight departed from the EU / UK. 

Because in this case, you are entitled to all three: a new flight, care from the airline, and, if your flight is eligible, to flight compensation.

American Airlines took me to my destination. Can I still get compensation?

You might.

If your flight is eligible, you can get compensation from American Airlines.

As long as the flight was from Europe and it was delayed due to the airline’s fault.

Yes, even if you were provided with a new flight.

What is your experience? Have you ever received American Airlines flight delay compensation? Do you still have questions about American Airlines compensation claim procedures and policies? Ask in the comments.