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Explained: Lufthansa Flight Cancellation Compensation – How To Claim

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Flight cancellations can be a major inconvenience for air travellers, but the Lufthansa Flight Cancellation Compensation Programme aims to alleviate some of the frustration by compensating passengers in accordance with EU Regulation 261/2004. 

Lufthansa Flight Cancellation Compensation Programme

Being a respected airline within the European Union, Lufthansa follows EU Regulation 261/2004. This regulation spells out the compensation passengers should receive if their flight gets cancelled. The compensation amounts are determined by the distance of the planned flight and the reason for the cancellation.

How the Programme Works

You’ll qualify for compensation as long as the cancellation was something the airline could control and you found out about it less than 14 days before you were supposed to take off.

The compensation amounts vary depending on the flight distance:

  1. €250 for flights up to 1,500 km
  2. €400 for flights between 1,500 and 3,500 km
  3. €600 for flights over 3,500 km

However, if the cancellation is due to what are described as ‘extraordinary circumstances’ in the terms and conditions i.e. events that are beyond the control of the airline, Lufthansa is not required to provide compensation.

Extraordinary Circumstances

Extraordinary circumstances refer to events or situations which prevent airlines from operating a flight as scheduled. These circumstances usually include severe weather conditions, natural disasters, political unrest, air traffic control restrictions, labour strikes, and security threats. When such events occur, airlines are typically not required to provide compensation for cancelled or delayed flights, as they cannot reasonably be held responsible for the disruptions.


Check what you might be entitled to using this simple form.

Submitting a Claim

If you need to claim compensation, you can do so directly through the airline’s website, but many passengers prefer to use a third party to help with the claim and to pursue it on their behalf.


The AirHelp scheme and website provide a platform that assists air travellers in claiming compensation for disrupted flights. AirHelp specialises in helping passengers understand their rights and obtain compensation from airlines in cases of flight delays, cancellations, or denied boarding under the European Union Regulation 261/2004 and other relevant regulations.

Air travellers can visit the AirHelp website, input their flight details and the nature of their disruption, and the platform will automatically assess their eligibility for compensation. If the claim is valid, AirHelp offers to handle the entire compensation process on behalf of the passenger in exchange for a fee, which is typically a percentage of the compensation amount.

AirHelp has a team of experts well-versed in air travel regulations and customer rights. They work diligently to ensure passengers receive the compensation they are entitled to from the airlines, making the process more manageable and less stressful for affected travellers.

Get AirHelp Plus.

Frequent flyer? Receive expert advice and claim up to £520 compensation when you face flight delays, cancellations, or luggage issues.


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Success Rate of Claims

Lufthansa has a reputation for fairly assessing claims and providing compensation where applicable. Passengers can expect a thorough investigation of their claim, with the airline considering all relevant information and evidence. While there are no public statistics on the success rate of claims, Lufthansa’s commitment to customer satisfaction suggests that legitimate claims are likely to be successful.

Compensation Applicability and Exclusions

As mentioned earlier, compensation is only applicable when the flight cancellation was within Lufthansa’s control and passengers were informed less than 14 days before the scheduled departure date. Exclusions include cancellations due to extraordinary circumstances, voluntary cancellations by passengers, and instances where passengers were offered a suitable alternative flight with a similar departure and arrival time.

Lufthansa Flight Cancellation Compensation - How To Claim

What is EU Regulation 261/2004?

EU Regulation 261/2004 is a European Union regulation that establishes common rules on compensation and assistance to passengers in the event of denied boarding, flight cancellations, or long delays of flights. 

The regulation applies to all flights departing from any country that belongs to the EU, as well as to flights arriving in the EU that are operated by an airline based in the EU.

The main purpose of EU Regulation 261/2004 is to protect passengers’ rights by ensuring they receive adequate compensation and assistance in case of disruptions that are within the airline’s control. The compensation amounts are determined by the flight distance and the nature of the disruption:

  1. €250 for flights up to 1,500 km
  2. €400 for flights between 1,500 and 3,500 km
  3. €600 for flights over 3,500 km

In addition to financial compensation, the regulation also requires airlines to provide passengers with care and assistance, such as meals, refreshments, communication facilities, and accommodation when necessary, depending on the length of the delay and the specifics of the situation.


How much compensation does Lufthansa give?

Compensation amounts range from €250 to €600, depending on the flight distance.

How do I ask for compensation for a cancelled flight?

Submit your application through the airline’s website, or use a third party, like AirHelp.

Which is the best flight compensation company?

There are several flight compensation companies to choose from. It is essential to research and compare their services, fees, and reputation before selecting one.

What is the most the airline will pay to compensate you?

Under EU Regulation 261/2004, the maximum compensation for a cancelled flight is €600.

How much is EU261 compensation?

EU261 compensation ranges from €250 to €600, depending on the flight distance.

How do airlines afford compensation?

Airlines typically allocate a portion of their revenue to cover compensation claims, as it is a legal requirement under EU Regulation 261/2004.

How long does it take to receive compensation?

They generally try to sort out claims within a few weeks, but the precise timeline can change depending on how complicated the case turns out to be.

Does every airline in the world have a flight compensation scheme?  What determines if an airline has one or not?

Not every airline in the world has a flight compensation scheme. The existence of a compensation scheme depends on various factors, including the airline’s country of operation, the regulations governing that region, and the airline’s own policies.

Some countries have their own regulations that dictate compensation for disrupted flights, while others may not have specific rules in place. Airlines may also have their own voluntary policies to provide compensation or assistance to passengers in case of disruptions, even if it’s not required by law.

Do all members of the same airline alliance have similar compensation schemes?

Members of the same airline alliance may have some similarities in their compensation schemes, but it’s not guaranteed that their policies will be identical.


The Lufthansa Flight Cancellation Compensation Programme ensures that passengers are fairly compensated for flight cancellations within the airline’s control. By following the outlined claim process and understanding the applicable compensation amounts and exclusions, passengers can confidently navigate the programme and pursue the compensation they are entitled to under EU Regulation 261/2004.

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