EU passenger rights extended to boats, not buses

The the European Parliament extended passenger rights on July 6:

Assistance for disabled passengers

The European Parliament also extended the initial proposal to cover assistance for disabled passengers.

"Disability may not be used as a reason for denying a passenger the right to board," reads the new EU regulation, adding that "free assistance must be provided to disabled people in ports".

The new rights for disabled will be restricted, however, "on condition that the carrier or the port operator is notified when the reservation is made or at least 48 hours before boarding". The rules will also apply to cruise passengers.

The full article:

  • Siim Kallas, Commission Vice-President in charge of transport, said: "This regulation on the rights of passengers travelling by sea and by inland waterway will extend passenger rights to further transport modes. This means that passengers travelling by water will benefit from the same basic quality service standards wherever they travel in the Union. We hope that the European framework of passengers' rights might soon be completed by the adoption of a regulation on rights for passengers travelling by bus and coach."

  • The new rights include amongst others:

    • guarantee of reimbursement or rerouting in situations of cancellation or of delay at departure of more than 90 minutes,
    • adequate assistance (such as snacks, meals, refreshments and, where necessary, accommodation up to three nights, with a financial coverage up to € 80 per night) in situations of cancellation or delay at departure of more than 90 minutes,
    • compensation, between 25% and 50% of the ticket price, in situations of delay in arrival or cancellation of journeys,
    • non-discriminatory treatment and specific assistance free of charge for disabled persons and persons with reduced mobility both at port terminals and on board ships, as well financial compensation for loss or damage of their mobility equipment,
    • minimum rules on information for all passengers before and during their journey, as well as general information about their rights in terminals and on board ships;
    • establishment by carriers and terminal operators of complaint handling mechanism available to passengers,
    • establishment of independent national bodies for the enforcement of the regulation, through, where appropriate, the application of penalties.

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