Know what your rights are if you are stranded at an airport

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — In Omaha, Southwest Airlines passengers are still stuck on Thursday as flights are canceled. 

A Lincoln travel agency said the holiday weekend was chaos for many. 

“We had emergency calls constantly all those four days,” said Holly Kaiser with Via Van Bloom Tour and Travel.  

As travelers continue to encounter desperate scenes at the airport, there is some important information everyone should know. 

“Even if they cancel a flight because of weather, they still have to refund that ticket,” Kaiser said. “There are also rights on delays, if you are delayed one hour, if you are delayed eight hours.” 

The U.S. Department of Transportation said airlines are not required by law to pay for hotel rooms or food for stranded passengers.

But if your flight is significantly delayed, you might be entitled to a refund, and if your flight is canceled, you are entitled to a prompt refund. 

Southwest has a webpage for people stranded in airports.

“You can submit a full refund request for any canceled flights, and if you have any travel expenses due to the disruption, you can submit those receipts directly to on our website,” said Ryan Green, chief commercial officer at Southwest Airlines.

Bags are another concern, as we’ve seen pictures of hundreds of bags all over airports. 

“If you’re going to travel Southwest, try not to ever check backs,” Kaiser said. “Because once you’re checked in and you check a bag, there’s nothing they can do to try to accommodate you until you get your bag back.” 

Travel agencies say having a professional helps in the process of getting refunds and knowing your rights. 

Also remember to keep your receipts for rental cars, hotels, meals and any flights you rebooked.

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