Delays, Overbooking, Cancelled flights, what???

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Flight board at the airportAfter realizing that flying from Santiago (de Compostela) can be the longest flight ever (more than Santiago de Chile, which I thought it was the longest) I was searching the possible compensations for my coworkers Genís and Marc.They already did something. Hence, try to avoid  flying with Spanair.

In the unlikely case  you are: denied boarding, or if your flight is cancelled, or if your flight is delayed for more tha two hours, airlines must give you a compensation and assistance, depending on the  situation. The reasons because an airline could change the time of your flight or cancel it altogether can be due to weather, mechanical problems and for not having all the crew in the boarding gate. Sometimes airlines might cancel a flight when there are not enought people that booked on.

All the information I’ve found is about flights departing from EU countries, landing to an EU country or with an EU airline.  You can check the information in Spanish here or just read the tips below. I think you can obtain similar compensations everywhere.

Denied boarding because of overbooking or cancelations:

When there’s an overbooked flight,  the airline will call for volunteers already with the confirmed reservation to exchange their flight for an agreed compensation. This compensation depends on how you get it:

If your exchange is for cash, the compensation goes like this:

  • Flights of 1500 km or less: 250€
  • Flights within the EU of more than 1500 km, and all other flights between 1500 and 3500 km : 400€
  • Flights not falling under the other cases (another continent for ex.): 600€

You can also exchange it for Transportation Credit Voucher, depending on the airline you are flying with, it increases the agreed compensation. Usually it is about 100€ or 200€ more than the prices I wrote before.

If there’re not enough volunteers,  boarding can be denied to passengers against their will, if this happens, the compensation and assistance can be denied for the passenger. So don’t think it twice and get the money or the voucher!

Assistance when overbooking or cancellation

Every passenger have to receive, free of charge:

  • Rerouting to the final destination under similar transport conditions and as soon as possible (maximum 7 days). The passenger can fly a later date at his/her convenience subject to the availability of seats.
  • Meals/refreshments in a reasonable relation to the waiting time
  • Hotel accommodation in cases of overnight stay with transport to the hotel included
  • Communication: 2 telephone calls, fax messages or e-mails

Delays in flights

  • There’s no compensation for 2 hours or less delay in the case of flights of 1500 km or less
  • There’s no compensation for 3 hours or less  delay in the case of all intra-EU flights of more than 1500 km and of all other flights between 1500 and 3500 km
  • There’s no compensation for 4 hours or less delay in the the other cases.

And think that:

Not with all the delays you can get an economic compensation, but you can check the Montreal Protocol and request it to the airline.

Not with all the the flights cancellations you can obtain a compensation:

  • If the airline announces the flight cancellation 2 weeks before the flight.
  • If the airline announces the flight cancellation 7 days before the flight and they offer an alternative transportation that will allow you to reeschedule your trip and take off 2 hours before your cancelled flight and with another requeriment: do not arrive 4 hours later than the first scheduled flight.
  • If the airplane shows a cause by “force majeure

And my last tips: Boarding Pass

  • Don’t loose your boarding pass. This is your proof you have a seat assigned and it can help in the future with the complaints.
  • Be patient, in these situations, the airplane crew in the boarding gate or customer service of the airline have just a little bit more information than you and sometimes they can’t do anything. Just make your complaints by requesting the complaint book.
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Work Abroad: where to apply (I)

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Johnny Cash mural on the side of a building in downtown Austin on Rio Grande just below 6th Street. “I don’t find a job”, “this crisis is affecting so much to the economy in my city”, “I don’t know where to look for”. Most of you probably have thought  of taking the first option offered, others can think about they will find it later and it’s better of  just keep looking for…and most of you have the desire of travelling because you feel useless at home waiting for a  call.

If you have this last feeling, don’t think it twice. Despite the economic gloom and doom, there are millions of jobs abroad available these days. If you can afford at least 3 months of living by yourself, it’s time to make a decision (most of the times it won’t be the salary you’ll get in your country, but most of the times it’s not about the salary, it’s about the experience).

Some of the travel jobs on the list you are gonna read below pay better than others. Some demand specific qualifications, while others are available to just about anyone who can speak some specific languages.

  • Teaching Languages.
    • Spanish: The Spanish goverment offers some grants to spanish teachers to go to the US, also, there’re a lot of countries who are lack of spanish teachers.
    • English: you can become part of  the cultural assistant program to teach English in Spain, althought there are a lof of countries where you can teach this universal language.
  • BabySitting:
    • The International Au Pair Association works to put in contact families with people who want to take care of their childrens. Before taking care of a kid, kust make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into first, because it’s sometimes tough depending on the children.
    • There are also other different networking websites to help new babysitters to find families on their own. One of the best is Great Aupair, and mommymixer,  aupair.com and easy aupair . Never forget that a lot of babysitters work as family assistants and drive kids to after-school programs, planning birthday parties, etc..
  • Voluntering:
    • The world needs you and a volunteering escape can help a lot to the organization you are working on and yourself. Volunteer opportunities are practically innumerable and in almost every country. Sites like Volunteer abroad or Idealist are references.
    • Other organizations like the European Youth Portal or the Global Volunteer Network can help to look for the best work. One organization I’d like to mention is Vicente Ferrer Fundation.   Read a little bit about what people says about these  or other organizations before going there.
  • Cruising/Sailoring
    • The perfect way to enjoy the good weather throught high seasons in different parts of the world. There are thousands of cruises which weigh anchor everyday in different parts of the world. All cruise Jobs is the biggest job board dedicated to employment in cruises.
    • Another sites where you can be a part of the cruise crew around the world are cruiselinejobworkoncruiseship and if you want to try something different that just entretaintment, this site allows you to work in platforms and huge non touristic ships.
    • if you don’t like crowds, don’t think it twice and check the opportunity of smaller private yachts. They also need people for the crew, some cool websites I found: crewseekers, findacrew and crewfile.
  • Tourguide:
    • Being a tour guide can be really interesting if you like history and you have good social skills. There so many tour companies where you can apply
    • But tour guide does not only mean going to cities and explain the history and the buildings, you can also combine it with your hobby: mountain biking, birdwatching. Some hostels I’ve been offer the opportunity to be a guide and discover the beauty of the region you are in.
  • Exchange work for Hostel Beds
    • Maybe this option sounds crazy, but some hostels, like the ones next to my favourite area offer it. Grand Canyon are offering some positions of cleaning rooms or computer work. Some hostels have the option already, if not, ask the hostel owner if it’s possible to exchange work  for a bed. Make sure to mention you are good for this position because there’re a minimum days you have to stay there. You can find more information about working in hostels in the Hostel Jobs webpage.
  • Seasonal Agricultural Campaigns
    • Ifyou  don’t like cities and want to feel the countryside, the beginning of seasonal campaigns are your option. It will be tough, but being in contact with nature is always good. The seasonal agricultural campaigns are everywhere. It’s about team work and undertake the tasks of picking, storing and packing the fruit. Check this site for Spain and this post in Australia. Working in an organic farm somwhere around the globe can be also a wonderful experience. Helpexchange is a great site too.
  • Commercial Airplane crew
    • This is not a short term job, it’s another career. Cabin crew work for airlines is a very popular option for a lot of travelers. Qatar Airways or British airways are two options, there are so many opportunities and a lot of companies are hiring. It sounds like a really cool job, but don’t forget that the cavin crew are the responsible for the safety of passengers and are specially trained to deal with security and emergency situations. Their work can be stressful but allows you to discover a lot of places in the world.
  • Artist:
    • Being an artist can bring you everywhere. You can think about music and check the tours of a lot of artists. You can be one of them too. There are also a lot of people who are going abroad to show their culture or travel as a staff. Also, the circus can be a good way to tour the world showing your taOahu, HI - July 2006lent.

And don’t forget you can always travel without working. Just enjoy your time but first of all check out your budget!!