Stuck at airport due to flight delay? Here’s how you can get free meal!

Anish Mondal
This is to streamline airlines-passenger relationship and clearly demarcate the rights and responsibilities of the two parties.

Travelling on a flight has become a part of our everyday life. Airways is one of the fastest and quickest modes of transport. When a passenger is about to travel by flight to the desired destination, flight delay is the last thing they want. But think about the airlines. Operating a flight is a complicated tasks as many people and agencies are involved at multiple levels. The delay in flight may be caused by several reasons such as Technical or Mechanical issues, Weather conditions, ATC (Air Traffic Control) clearance and Security clearance and others.

In India, the Ministry of Civil Aviation released a ‘Passenger Charter’ last year that mentions the rules, rights and guidelines that applies to an air traveller for enjoying a comfortable and a relaxing journey till the desired destination. This is to streamline airlines-passenger relationship and clearly demarcate the rights and responsibilities of the two parties.

Know what you should do when travelling on a domestic flight-

If a traveller is experiencing a delay in the flight, here is when he/she can get free-meal:

(1) If one checked-in at the airport on time and the flight is expecting to be delayed by more than 2 hours or more having a block time (Block Time is the total amount of time a flight takes from pushing back from the departure gate to arriving at the destination gate) of up to 2.5 hours, then he/she is entitled to get meal and refreshments free of cost.

(2) The passenger travelling in a domestic flight is also eligible to get free meal even if the flight is delayed by 3 hours or more having a block time of more than 2.5 hours and up to 5 hours.

(3) The traveller is also eligible to receive the refreshments at free of cost if the flight gets delayed by 4 hours and not falling in above two categories.

Know how to enjoy the benefit of free meal and refreshments-

If a traveller is witnessing a delay in the departure of the flight, then they should approach the concerned airline to enjoy the benefit.

(1) Visit the airline counter at the airport.

(2) Show the ticket and inform that the flight is delayed.

(3) Ask for free meals as laid down in the ‘Passenger Charter’.

(4) Take the voucher and enjoy the meal.