A ‘guaranteed’ £100 instant payment for delayed airline passengers is to be offered by a start-up firm.
FlightDelayRepay is aiming the scheme at airlines, operators, banks and retailers who can offer it as part of their loyalty programmes to reward and retain customers.
It is intended to be provided free of charge to passengers, who will receive compensation automatically from FlightDelayRepay the moment their registered flight is delayed by three hours or more.
The payment will go straight into the passenger’s PayPal account – unlike with flight compensation agencies, which can take an average 90 days to settle a claim and deduct up to 50% in fees.
Manchester-based FlightDelayRepay goes live today (Tuesday) having developed technology underpinning the scheme.
The company is in talks with an unnamed global tour operator and online retailer to provide the service to their loyalty programme members.
Its guarantee applies to all flights that arrive into or depart from Europe to anywhere in the world, regardless of carrier or the reason for the delay.
The firm claims to cover more delayed flights than under EU regulation 261/2004 compensation rules.
The European regulation has limitations on non-EU carriers and does not require airlines to pay out for “extraordinary circumstances” such as extreme weather or industrial action by baggage handlers or air traffic controllers.
However, FlightDelayRepay covers these eventualities and comes as the EU considers increasing the minimum delay for compensation from three to potentially 12 hours, and doubts over air passengers’ rights post-Brexit.
Passengers are still entitled to claim EU compensation after receiving their £100 or €100 from FlightDelayRepay.
Unlike travel insurance that typically pays out £20 if a flight is delayed by more than 12 hours, with FlightDelayRepay there are no exclusions and no evidence required. Being fully automated, no claim needs to be submitted for processing.
The firm provides travellers with an instant payment of £100 or €100 to ease inconvenience and help meet unexpected expenses such as taxis, meals or entertainment while waiting to fly.
Passengers register their flight number online 24 hours before scheduled take-off.
The offering is underwritten by Millstream Underwriting on behalf of Arch Insurance Company (Europe).
FlightDelayRepay founder and director Richard Rubin, former head of UK and France operations for a major flight compensation company, said: “We provide a fresh and exciting opportunity for global brands to reward, wow and retain the loyalty of their best customers.
“Each time a flight is delayed is an opportunity to turn irate passengers into passionate loyalists and brand advocates.”