The total number of trips to Ireland increased by 13.4% between March and May 2015, official statistics reveal. The number of trips was up to 2,159,800 - an overall increase of 255,500 compared to the same period in 2014. Trips by residents of the UK increased by 11.5% to 906,500 while trips by those from European Countries other than the UK increased by 12.9% to 789,300. But more travel means more risk of delay for passengers.
Brian Whelan of Airhelp, a company which helps those who have had a flight delayed or cancelled make a claim against the airline, says the amount of compensation available to airlines' customers depends on the length of the flight and the length of delay. But in general, Mr Whelan says that people can be entitled to compensation of between €250 and up to €600 for delays of up two or three hours or more. He says that Irish airports are fairly typical of delays across Europe, adding that airlines are pretty efficient and that actually only less than half of 1% of flights tend to be delayed. He advises people who are hit by flight delays to gather as much information about the delay as they can and know their own booking details. They should also try to get a reason from the airline for the delay and to make sure they know their rights - which are available from Airhelp as well as the Commission for Aviation Regulation in Ireland. The airline is also obliged under EU regulations to fully inform their passengers of what their entitlements are.
But Mr Whelan also warns passengers to be aware of some pitfalls - some airlines have been inclined to offer coupons or vouchers in lieu of compensation. He says that if people accept these and sign away a further entitlement, they could be losing hundreds of euro. He also says there are many reasons why a delay may be "allowable" by an airline, such as an "extraordinary circumstance" which means that the airline is not liable to give a passenger compensation. These reasons include "very" bad weather, which means that a lot of flights around your flights may be delayed.
There is also a big loophole in terms of what the airlines call "technical faults", Mr Whelan adds. The European Court of Justice recently ruled that technical faults are not always a good reason not to give compensation, so it is very important that the airline gives a passenger good information about what actually was the cause of the delay, he states.
MORNING BRIEFS - The number of Foreign Direct Investment projects into Ireland last year jumped 6% to 168, according to the latest FDI intelligence report from the Financial Times. The report says Ireland and the UK were the only countries in the top ten to achieve growth in 2014 - considering the number of projects, capital investment and job creation. Capital investment into Ireland totalled $5 billion, accounting for 4% of the European market share, the report says. The Asia-Pacific region remained the leading destination last year for foreign direct investment, with 4,153 announced projects with estimated capital investment of $250 billion. The region attracted 38% of all capital investment globally last year.
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