Travel by sea


Passenger rights when travelling by sea are governed by Regulation 1177/2010 (on the rights of passengers when travelling by sea and inland waterway), which entered into force on 18th December 2012.

The Regulation applies to passengers travelling

  • on passenger services where the port of embarkation is situated within the territory of a Member State
  • on passenger services where the port of embarkation is situated outside the territory of a Member State and the port is disembarkation is situated in the territory of a Member State, provided that the service is operated by an EU carrier
  • on a cruise where the port of embarkation is situated in the territory of a Member State.

The Regulation guarantees the following rights for passengers:

  • In cases of cancellation or delay of more than 90 minutes at departure –
    • Reimbursement or rerouting
    • Assistance, to include snacks, meals, refreshments, and where necessary accommodation for up to three nights, with a cost of up €80 per night
  • In situations of delay in arrival or cancellation of journeys –
    • Compensation of between 25% and 50% of the ticket price
  • Protection for people with a disability or reduced mobility –
    • Assistance, free of charge, at port terminals and on board ships
    • Financial compensation for loss of or damage to mobility equipment
  • The right to information
    • Passengers must be provided with information on their rights both before and during their journey; general information about their rights must also be provided in terminals and on board ships
  • Complaint handling –
    • Carriers and terminal operators must have a complaint handling mechanism available to all passengers
    • Independent national bodies must be established in each Member State to ensure the enforcement of the Regulation and, where appropriate, the application of penalties.
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