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Arline Delays Guide | Travel Insurance Direct (TID)

No matter how well organised you are, how often you check your flight status and gate number, nor how on-point you are with your arrival at the airport, travel doesn’t always go to plan.

As a team of travel experts ourselves, we know that airlines regularly reschedule, cancel, or delay flights with little regard for your travel plans.

This article gives you information about delays caused by a carrier, what you'll be covered for and some things to look out for when it comes to your airline.

Our TID policies do consider disruption because of severe weather conditions, natural disasters, riots, strikes and civil unrest too. For more details read the policy information here.

What you need to know about airlines and booking flights:

It’s always best to embark on any vacation with the expectation that your trip, at some way along the line, will be disrupted.

When it comes to airlines, delays are the result of several factors. They may be due to staffing of the cabin crew; a delayed inbound flight; unfavourable weather conditions at your place of departure; or mechanical issues or concerns.

How to factor delays into your planning

What takes place behind the scenes at the world’s airports is often out of our control, but there are a few logistical considerations you can make to minimise the impact.

If you're booking your own flights, ensure that you know the minimum connecting time between flights and allow a little extra time for short delays. Keep in mind that you may need to change terminals or have a longish walk between gates depending on the size of the airport you’re navigating.

Where possible, book connecting flights with the same airline or within the same alliance, as they may be able to reschedule your flights with minimum fuss (and expense) if the need arises and the gates are normally nearby.

Save that once-in-a-lifetime meal at your favourite Michelin restaurant, or the Broadway show you’ve been waiting years for, for any night but your first night, because you may not make it if the delay is significant.

Know what you're entitled to from the airline

Most international airlines will have Conditions of Carriage or some other policy in simpler English that explain what you will be covered for when they delay your flight.

Depending on the duration of the delay, the minimum compensation from them should be meals and refreshments, but with longer delays you may also be entitled to accommodation and transfers.

Here are links to the Conditions of Carriage for some of the main common carriers used by our customers. There may be additional terms and conditions for your particular fare that you will need to check as well. Search for 'delays' in your carrier's website and see what comes up.

Travelling to the European Union?

Carriers operating in the European Union (EU) offer some compensation to customers who are out of pocket because of: denied boarding; downgrading; cancellation or long delay.

What's covered?

Travel delays are covered up to the limits shown in the Schedule of benefits in the PDS for those travellers who take out The Works, Annual Multi Trip and Domestic travel plans (not included in The Basics plan), in the following circumstances. 

When delayed six hours or more: 

TID will provide cover if your pre-paid scheduled transport is delayed at least 6 hours for unforeseen reasons outside your control. Sub-limits apply. 

In these circumstances we can offer cover for: 

  • The cost of additional meals and accommodation
  • The reasonable cost of rearranging your travel arrangements to resume your pre-paid arrangements. 

Missed connection – special events

If your trip is interrupted by an event that is not anticipated, is unexpected, and is outside of your control, and you are unable to arrive at your destination by the time originally scheduled for the purpose of attending a wedding, funeral, conference, 25th or 50th wedding anniversary, concert or ticketed sporting event which cannot be delayed as a consequence of your late arrival, we will reimburse you for the reasonable additional cost of using alternative public transport, up to the policy limit, to get you there on time.

Remember: It’s important that you provide written confirmation from the carrier as to the reasons for the delay and duration of the delay or restriction.

What's not covered?

There are exclusions in our TID policies when it comes to delays. These include the following:

  • Costs to purchase a new flight or to upgrade your current flight to get you to your destination on time.
  • We will not pay for any non-refundable costs for anyone not named on your policy.
  • In the case of an Agent’s cancellation fees, TID will not pay more than the limit outlined in the Schedule of Benefits.
  • There is no cover where you have made a claim for the same costs under any other section of the policy.

Travel with confidence

Our Customer Service team is always available to help you to understand the policy, what you may be covered for and any documentation you need to pick up along the way.

Our 24-hour Emergency Assistance team is on call to help you access medical attention or hospitalisation if you’re sick or injured.

Our travel safety team at TID work to keep customers informed and publish information on major events on our website.

Call or email our teams day or night as required.

This is a brief summary of cover only. Cover is subject to the full terms, conditions, limitations and exclusions outlined in the Product Disclosure Statement.

Last updated: 10 July 2023

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