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Little did you know (or maybe you did), airplanes can be impounded—just like cars. Four years ago, a German traveler experienced a 22-hour delay on a Thomas Cook airlines flight from Vienna to the Caribbean. In response to the horrific scenario, the airline was supposed to pay the passenger $680 in fines for the inconvenience, as laid out in regulations from the European Union that calls for airlines to compensate flyers on delayed or canceled flights based on a fixed tariff corresponding to the extent of the delay and the distance.

After the unidentified passenger came forward and shared that the airline had not compensated her, a court order was obtained. Condor—Thomas Cook's sister brand—has since paid the fine, but it doesn't erase the fact that airplanes can actually be impounded. 

Erika Owen is the Audience Engagement Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram at @erikaraeowen.

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