Passengers left on the ground due to the cancellation of planes in times of pandemic can exchange the voucher received in exchange for the ticket for cash. The European Commission has obtained the ok from 16 big airports including Alitalia, Ryanair, KLM, Air France and British Airways. Compensation will be effective within one week
Seven days to reimburse passengers left ashore due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Sixteen airlines, including Alitalia, Ryanair, KLM, Air France and British Airways, have pledged to compensate travelers whose flights were canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic and who received a voucher.
The ticket and cash refund
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The decision comes after the major disputes and protests put in place by passengers, who had seen their ticket converted into a voucher, a voucher to be used within one year from the date of request, instead of obtaining a cash refund of the same ticket. as required by law. But denying financial reimbursement, offering only travel vouchers as compensation for the canceled route, is an illegal practice under EU law.
The European commission: compliance with the rules
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The confirmation comes from the European Commission in a note. Following a complaint from Beuc, the European consumer organization, the EU executive had to take matters into its own hands. After the first appeal to the various national authorities for compliance with EU rules on passenger rights had fallen on deaf ears last year (in the context of the Covid crisis, neither the EU executive nor the member countries took legal measures against the companies), he thus called the national co-operation for consumer protection (CPC) to order. The latter, together with the EU executive, had initiated a dialogue last February with airlines accused of being reluctant to reimburse travelers whose flights had been canceled due to travel restrictions linked to Covid-19.
Sixteen companies say yes to the EU
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Sixteen companies now involved in refunds: they are Alitalia, Aegean Airlines, Air France, Austrian Airlines, British Airways, Brussels Airlines, Easyjet, Eurowings, Iberia, KLM, Lufthansa, Norwegian, Ryanair, TAP, Vueling and Wizz Air. All the big airports have agreed to provide, within seven days, as required by European legislation, for the reimbursement of passengers who were unable to leave. Airlines have also made a commitment to inform travelers of their rights in the event of cancellation, to present the different options offered on an equal footing and to refund unused vouchers that travelers had to accept in the early stages of the pandemic. .
The note from the EU executive
“Most airlines – reads the note released by the European Commission – agreed that the unused vouchers that passengers in the early stages of the pandemic had to accept can be reimbursed in cash if the passenger so wishes”.