A final update to my Lufthansa EU261/2004 delay claim.
If you missed out on the details of my issue with Lufthansa, I’ll briefly summarize:
- Itinerary: Milan – Frankfurt – Munich – Los Angeles
- Milan to Frankfurt flight delayed by two hours
- Frankfurt to Munich flight delay (due to crew scheduling) forces misconnection in Munich and returning home 24+ hours later
- EU261/2004 compensation requested due to Munich to Frankfurt delay and delayed arrival into Los Angeles
- Lufthansa rejects compensation on the basis that Milan to Frankfurt delay was not long enough and that subsequent delay did not matter
- Back-and-forth ensued with Lufthansa insisting that Frankfurt to Munich delay did not matter because it was not the “first delay” on the itinerary
- After sending a note to CEO Carsten Spohr’s office, we received 250EUR each without an admission of liability.
> Read More: The Incredulous, Absurd Reason Lufthansa Is Denying Me EU261 Compensation
> Read More: Update On My Lufthansa EU261 Claim
After the last 250EUR deposit, I wrote back once more claiming that only a full payment of 600EUR each plus expenses would resolve the matter. I also filed a complaint with the Luftfahrt-Bundesamt, the German governmental agency that handles these sorts of complaints.
Two E-Mails Arrive
At long last, Lufthansa responded with a pair of notes. First, it agreed to pay the full 600EUR:
Dear Mr. Klint,
We are very sorry that your journey from Frankfurt to Los Angeles via Munich on 22 June did not proceed smoothly and we apologize for the caused inconvenience.
We have taken the opportunity to review your case and calculated the respective distance on the basis of the great circle route method and decided to proceed to the payment of a total of 600 EUR.
An additional payment in the amount of 812 USD (equal 700 EUR / 350 EUR per Person) has today been transferred into your bank account. Since the transaction is organized and processed by our accounting department please allow up to two weeks for the payment to clear. Thank you in advance for your patience in this respect.
We hope that our solution meets your expectations and we would be pleased to
welcome you as well as [your colleague] on board a Lufthansa flight again in the near future.
Before I could even respond with a follow-up about the expenses, this arrived as well:
Dear Mr. Klint,
We are very sorry that your journey on 22 June did not proceed smoothly.
Of course, our passengers can expect to receive care amenities at the airport in such situations. We process today the payment of your hotel bill and your taxi costs for an amount of USD426,44. Your patience in this respect is appreciated as it may take some days for the payment to clear.
We do hope that despite your unfortunate experience, you will continue to travel with Lufthansa.
All money has now posted for both my business partner and me.
Don’t Give Up!
The key is persistence. Lufthansa, like other airlines on both sides of the pond, will try to wear you out through initial denials and spurious excuses. You know if your claim is legitimate or not. If it is, don’t give up. Keep hitting Lufthansa with emails: I started asking for daily updates. Maybe they paid just to get me off their backs. Does it matter? They delay was real and under EU regulation, the money was due.
There is something to be said for following the chain of command, but if I ever run into another Lufthansa delay, I’m not wasting my time going through normal protocols. While Lufthansa unnecessarily dragged its feet, I appreciate that in the end it paid up.