4 Rights of Airline Passengers if flight gets delayed in Saudi Arabia, How I claimed them?

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is a country which gives rights to people and state authorities try their best to facilitate the public. I got a personal experience in this regard when my flight got delayed at the airport of the Holy Madinah. I was waiting for my flight to Qassim along with other passengers at the lounge of Madinah airport. Suddenly an announcement was made by the airline representative that the flight is delayed and will not depart on the given time. The announcer did not mention expected time for the departure of the flight. While waiting for the flight departure I eventually started surfing the web page of “General Authority for Civil Aviation (GACA)”, I intended to know about the rights of passengers whose flight is delayed. To my surprise, there was a lot to be given as the remedy of a flight delay. GACA regulations explained different compensations for the passengers according to the time duration of flight’s delay. I mention them as follows:[irp]

1-If the passenger is there at the airport and flight is being delayed, the airline is bound to give special care to the passenger and the passenger is also entitled to soft drinks and snacks as well, after one hour of delay in departure of the flight.

2-The airlines are bound to arrange hot meals for the passengers after a delay of three hours in the flight’s departure.

3-If in case the delay in flight departure occurs for a duration exceeding six hours, the passengers waiting for the flight shall be given hot meals, they shall be provided with accommodation and airline is also bound to pay a financial compensation of 300 Saudi riyals per hour however the compensation shall not exceed an amount of 3000 SR in total.

4-If an airline postpones the flight and passenger is informed about this delay seven day before the time of flight’s departure, the passenger is entitled to get the amount of ticket to be given back without any deduction and if the airlines inform about the delay earlier than seven days than the passengers have two options; they may get the ticket refunded or they may ask for a confirm seat on some other flight departing on the same date or within a time of a day or two.

After I had read the above-mentioned remedies, I explained these to all other passengers that got affected by the delay of flight and I had a wish that all of them may contact the airline and demand the rights given them by law. I myself, after a delay of an hour, approached the officials of concerned airline and quoted them rights of passengers in case their flight is delayed. The airline’s representative contacted the higher authorities of airline and they also responded positively (because they were aware of the fact that passengers are well informed about their rights). Within 15 minutes all the passengers received snacks and shortly an alternative flight to Qassim was also arranged by the airline.[irp]

This incident clarifies that majority of passengers were not aware of their rights. Private and public sector organizations very often explain the duties of their customers and punishments for breaking the terms and conditions. Unfortunately, no one is interested in educating the customers about the rights given them by law of land. I feel the dire need of a campaign to educate the people and enhance awareness about different rights of consumers.

Source: Saudi Gazette


  • Arif Fazlani

    my father just missed his flight, he was a business class passenger. He had cleared the immigration as was in the lounge waiting for his flight.. my monther was on wheel chair, and my father is heart patient.. they both were in the lounge and when they kept on repeatedly asking for wheel chair much before the boarding time. finally they had to walk to the board the flight and they were denied boarding the aircraft.. because the gate was closed the reason was unknown the staff was very rude and arrogant they misbehaved and on request of my father did not listen to his several request.. his baggage was off load even before. He was told his tickets are no show and he has to buy another tickets and fly another airline. for 24 hours he was harassed and the rude behaviour of the ground staff and the mental torture of staff at Saudi Arabia – Jeddah airport for Flight Saudia SV 722 from Jeddah to Bombay on 5th of August 2017. i wish to file legal action and complaint to Saudi civil aviation authority about the ground staff and rude behaviour and missing of flight for elderly heart patient without their fault.

  • Did you request the wheel chair at the time of booking the ticket or issuing the boarding pass? If not, you cannot legally ask them to arrange this for them. What I have observed so far, if you book a wheelchair at the time of booking the ticket, it becomes their responsibility to provide one and they make sure that these people are on board.
    Second, they must have reached at the gates very late. If they were sitting in the waiting area, they should have approached them earlier than closing the gates.
    We all know about Saudi staff customer services so you cannot expect them to be very supportive.

  • Arif Fazlani

    thanks Steve, yes we did do booking request for wheel chair at the time of booking and also at the time of boarding pass.. she was on wheel chair when she came to the lounge. we are extensive travellers. That’s shocking it was their responsibility… now we were not late.. the boarding gate was open but the arrogant Saudi Staff was rude and arrogant. Also please note they were not in waiting area they were in Business Class Lounge.. where no announcement is done.

    i wish to take legal action or seeking help to fight and take action against the airlines… need help to find the right place where i can be heard.

  • You can register a complaint against them, but if you are living in Saudi Arabia for some time, you should know that it will be useless at the end of the day.

  • Arif Fazlani

    we are already back home.. but we are going to file a court case against the airlines in India. i need help if i can fight with them or complaint internationally ?