News Item

EU adopts rights for sea travellers

The European Parliament has passed a regulation on rights of passengers travelling by sea and inland waterways.

After air and rail, transport by water will be covered by a specific set of rights for passengers throughout the EU. Maritime and inland waterway passengers - in particular passengers with a disability or reduced mobility - will enjoy new rights that will protect them when they travel within the EU.

The new rights include:
- Guarantee of reimbursement or re-routing for cancellation or delay at departure of more than 90 minutes.
- Adequate assistance (such as snacks, meals, refreshments and accommodation up to 3 nights, with a financial coverage up to € 80 per night) on cancellation or delay at departure of more than 90 minutes.
- Compensation of 25-50% of ticket price for delay in arrival or cancellation.
- Non-discriminatory treatment and specific assistance free-of-charge for those disabled or with reduced mobility at terminals and on board.
- Minimum rules on information for all passengers before and during journey.
- Establishment by carriers and terminal operators of complaint-handling mechanism for passengers.
- Establishment of independent national bodies for the enforcement of the regulation.

But don't hold your breath - after this week's vote in the European Parliament, the Council will have to confirm the agreement for the regulation to be formally adopted. It would then be due to enter into force 2 years after its adoption.

The Transport Commissioner adds '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'. This would then bring similar rights for all forms of public transport.

  • 08 July 2010
  • MTNG

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