The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is considering action against airlines handling of refunds.
Law states airline operators must refund clients flight money within 7 days if the flight is cancelled.
Many Airlines are struggling to keep up with demand for refunds, as less than 10% of flights from the UK are taking off.
The CAA regulator stated “We are reviewing how airlines are handling refunds during the coronavirus pandemic, and will consider if any action should be taken to ensure that consumer rights are protected,”
Cancelled flight refunds delays
Thousands of complaints have been received with clients being fobbed off with “Travel Vouchers” and the system to convert that back to the refund that was originally promised “Extremely Difficult”.
It has been estimated there is over 7 Billion pounds in refunds due.
The CAA clearly stated that “Under the law, consumers are entitled to receive a refund for their cancelled flights. Even despite the challenges the industry is currently facing. We expect airlines to provide refunds for cancelled flights as soon as practically possible. Whilst appreciating there are operational challenges for airlines in the current circumstances.”
Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary recently stated:
“it will take up to six months to refund passengers for flights cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic. The airline was struggling to process a backlog of 25 million refunds with reduced staff.”
Thousands of jobs in the aviation industry have been cut with fleets grounded. British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and Ryan Air are just a few affected. The proposed 14 day quarantine will only further hurt the industry.
Karen Dee speaking for the Airport Operators Association regarding the proposed fourteen day quarantine for inbound passengers stated:
“The measures should be applied on a selective basis following the science and the economic impact on key sectors should be mitigated”.