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This morning, I was supposed to take a flight from Deurne International Airport to Alicante in Spain, with assistance from the flight agency, Tui Fly, because of my autism. This flight was scheduled to depart at 6:30 AM.

The problem is that yesterday, a group of climate activists attempted to occupy Deurne airport, destroying part of the fence and causing the one plane that was still to land to be rerouted to Brussels Airport Zaventem. And it just happened to be that my flight of this morning was supposed to use that plane. So last night around 7 PM I was informed through text, in French even, that my flight would depart at the same time from Zaventem and that instead of the check-in being at Deurne between 4:30 and 5:30, I would need to be at Deurne at 3:15 at the latest so the passengers could be shipped by bus to Zaventem so they could take their flight there.

So instead of getting up at 4 AM and arriving at Deurne at 4:30 AM, I had to get up at 2 AM and arrived at Deurne at 2:30 AM, together with my brother who drove me there. We then talked to a Tui Fly employee there and because there wouldn't be any assistance from Tui on the bus ride and the travel on foot from the bus to the check-in counter, it was proposed that my brother would instead bring me directly to Zaventem and we would handle the rest of the assistance there. We accepted this proposal, drove to Zaventem and went to the Tui Fly counter there. The rest of the assistance was handled really well and I'm now typing this question from my final destination.

The question I have about this: is ANY of this covered by any EU regulations regarding passenger rights and potential compensation? My flight wasn't delayed and the destination wasn't changed, but the departure was changed and to handle this I had to get up 2 hours earlier than I originally planned to.

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    "it was proposed that my brother would instead bring me directly to Zaventem and we would handle the rest of the assistance there." If they did not offer you already a voucher or something similar on the spot they are the worst of the worst.
    – EarlGrey
    Dec 18, 2023 at 12:05

1 Answer 1

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You are covered by EC261. However, this case seems to be "...caused by extraordinary circumstances that could not have been avoided by any reasonable measure".
This means you are entitled to assistance, but not compensation.
I think you should be entitled to a refund on extra transport costs to Zaventem, since this would be considered assistance.

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    Even if they don't have a form, you can still send them a paper letter.
    – Alice Ryhl
    Dec 17, 2023 at 22:04
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    Usually there's no form, you just gather all the details and contact them directly.
    – André
    Dec 17, 2023 at 22:33
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    @Kimbi But if the OP needs and was promised autism assistance and this one was unavailable on the bus, they might still have a case. Could be hard and might not be worth the effort to actually get what they might be entitled to.
    – gerrit
    Dec 18, 2023 at 9:12
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    @Kimbi Not only was it not available, but "it was proposed that my brother would instead bring me directly to Zaventem" so the airline's solution was "We can't. Do it yourself." Dec 18, 2023 at 9:37
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    Seems like the airline worked with OP to come up with a reasonable solution, they should cover the brothers costs (transportation and time) though.
    – deep64blue
    Dec 19, 2023 at 8:43

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