When automation outwits bureaucracy - 42patents

AirHelp – how a start-up helps travellers in getting compensation.

Within 6 years (2009-2015), in EU alone, the total of £8.3 billion of compensation, only for delays, was unclaimed. There are multiple reasons. Passengers:

are unaware that they are entitled to compensations
do not complete their claims because airlines “fobs them off”
do not have competences to challenge their decision
quit too soon
wrongly assume that it is too late or lack of booking confirmation makes it impossible to claim for compensation
The ones that are responsible for dealing with such claims are principally the airlines.

It doesn’t come as a surprise that they have no interest in making this process any easier and more transparent to a traveler. One could say “they are not a charity to enjoy giving money away”, it’s difficult to disagree but it is the customer’s right to receive a compensation. A Danish startup spotted this conflict of interests and decided to address it in the travelers’ favor.

AirHelp takes over troublesome cases of delayed, overbooked or canceled flights from travelers. There is only one condition: an incident couldn’t have taken place sooner than 3 years from the date of filing the claim.

The system uses flights’ details to see whether compensation should be granted. If yes, AirHelp starts to prepare a claim. If not, they don’t ask their client for a dime. When AirHelp manages to get the claimed amount, they will take a cut of 25%. And again, if they don’t succeed at collecting compensation, they won’t charge a traveler at all.


How can such a business be profitable considering all the complexity waiting to stop the claim at every step of the application? AirHelp has automated the legal process of filing a compensation claim. The automation has made AirHelp able to file thousands of claims, without having to manually do the paperwork. Such efficiency makes it irrelevant that some of the claims are not going to be processed. Human potential is used in cases that will create profit. Once again automation lets us focus on what really matters.

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This article is written by Lena Anna Janiszewska




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