17 DECEMBER 2018
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Airlines were warned last week they are at risk of breaking consumer law by imposing rip-off ‘no show’ clauses which they can use to cash in when a passenger misses the first leg of a journey.
Which? magazine said the clauses, which were often buried deep in an airline’s ‘terms and conditions’ table, meant any passenger who missed an outbound flight could be considered a ‘no-show’.
All a passenger’s connecting or return flights were then cancelled, typically with no refund, and the seats could be resold, allowing the airlines to double their money, Which? said.
“Passengers often only find out their tickets have been cancelled when they arrive at the airport for their return leg and are forced to buy another seat at a vastly inflated price, or pay a hefty fine, up to €3,000 in some cases, to use their original ticket,” the magazine added.
The consumer organisation has now written to nine carriers including BA and Virgin Atlantic informing them the practice is potentially in breach of both the Consumer Rights Act and the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Directive.
All comments are filtered to exclude any excesses but the Editor does not have to agree with what is being said. 100 words maximum
Michael Preston, Weybridge/CPT
Since ticketing from EU destinations is so common, it will be an interesting test case if this should ever go to court.