Amid Israel's airport strike, a guide to passengers

Courts likely to rule that flight delays and cancellations due to general strike called in protest of government's judicial overhaul, constitute circumstances beyond airline's control, excusing them from compensating passengers; Israelis stranded abroad should immediately contact airlines or travel agents

Ehud Fai, attorney, Iris Lifshitz Klieger|
After flights from Israel were suspended on Monday, after a general strike was announced, Israelis were stranded at the airport and arrivals were also delayed.
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If the strike continues until the late hours, incoming flights are expected to be canceled.
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Passengers are stranded at Ben Gurion airport after a general strike was declared
(Photo: AFP)
The strike which encompasses Israel's public sector as well as parts of the private sector was called by the labor union the Histadrut, Israel's largest, in a press conference earlier.
So what do those scheduled to travel need to know?
According to Israeli law, as of hour 5 of a flight delay, or if the flight is canceled passengers would have the option of canceling their travel plans and be reimbursed fully after submitting a demand, within 21 days, or change to another flight when one is available, at no extra cost.
If the flight was canceled or delayed for over eight hours, passengers will be eligible for compensation from airlines, for a period of up to four years from flight cancelation.
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Departing flights are canceled after a general strike was called
(Photo: Reuters)
However, if the airlines can show that the flight delays or cancelations were caused by circumstances beyond their control, or a general strike, there will be no compensation.
Courts will likely rule in favor of airlines in the current strike.
Israelis stranded abroad would be advised to keep receipts for hotels, transport or any other expense so that they may submit them to airlines when reimbursement is possible.
They should also contact airlines or travel agents quickly to find alternative flights and document or record all dealings with them.

Israeli law specified
החוק הגדיר כמה סוגי הטבות שעל חברות התעופה לספק לכם ללא תשלום במקרים של עיכובי וביטול טיסות, ושהזכאות לקבלתן תלויה בזמן ההמתנה לטיסה. למשל, החל מהשעה השלישית לעיכוב הטיסה תהיו זכאים לקבל מחברת התעופה ועל חשבונה מזון, משקאות ושירותי תקשורת (הכוללים שתי שיחות טלפון והודעה באמצעות פקסימיליה או דואר אלקטרוני). החוק אף קובע כי חובה על החברה ליידע אתכם בדבר זכויותיכם.
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