How to get a refund for flights canceled by Ryanair, EasyJet and Volotea

How to get a refund for flights canceled by Ryanair, EasyJet and Volotea

How to get a refund for flights canceled by Ryanair

The Antitrust has moved against the three airlines for the commercial practices adopted for the reimbursement of tickets for canceled flights

A passenger looks at the departure board at the airport (press office photo) A fine of 4, 2 million to Ryanair for non-reimbursement of canceled flights was decided by the Competition and Market Authority (Agcm) which, in recent days, had imposed two more penalties for 2.8 million on EasyJet and 1.4 million on Volotea for the same reason.

According to the Guarantor, the three companies engaged in a seriously incorrect and unprofessional conduct when, after the limitations on travel, they canceled numerous flights scheduled and offered for sale, always using the motivation of health emergency and continuing to issue vouchers without refunding. This last method is hindered and delayed, to induce and in some cases force to choose the voucher and, for the Agcm, after having provided misleading and omissive information to consumers about their rights.

Ryanair, for example , had not reimbursed consumers the cost of tickets for flights canceled after 3 June 2020, but in the case of the Irish company, the advertising campaign was also considered misleading. Starting from that month it had communicated the possibility of changing the flight for free (with the claim "No penalty for the change" or similar), whereas instead it applied higher rates for the new chosen flight than those charged at the same time on its own system. reservation. In addition, there was a penalty if the change took place in the seven days prior to departure.

There are other misconducts ascertained by the companies, such as the failure to recognize a refreshment in the case of cancellation of the trip due to a return of the pandemic, or the addition of obstacles to the possibility of using vouchers already issued, perhaps by forcing the use of a paid telephone number to be able to use it, or by failing to make a cash refund upon expiry of the same or still not providing for the duration of 18 months, as established by emergency legislation.

How to get a refund

At the time the sanction was announced, Ryanair offers two ways to get a refund on its website, depending on whether the flight was booked on its platform or on screen scraping sites. ". The latter "may not share customer personal data with us" and "provide us with false information", causing contact difficulties and therefore "so far we have not been able to refund you directly". To remedy the problem, the company provides a "customer data verification form".

“Vouchers are offered as a valid alternative to cash refunds”, with 18 months to rebook the flight, even setting it for a date after that deadline, explains the company. In any case, “if you accept the voucher and do not use it before the expiry date, you will receive a full refund in cash; if you use only part of the voucher before the expiration date, you will receive the remaining balance in cash after the expiry ", reads the page dedicated to direct bookings, which hosts a specific form to get the money back before 18 months.

EasyJet announces that, in the event of flight cancellations, "passengers will be informed directly by email and will be explained the options available to them, which include moving to another flight, receiving a voucher for the value of the reservation or the possibility to request a refund through the Booking Management section ". For this summer, until September 30, the Swiss company guarantees the possibility of changing the flight at any time up to 2 hours before departure, with all flights currently on sale and to any destination. On a page dedicated to vouchers, however, the expected duration of the voucher is "12 months from the date of issue (unless otherwise indicated by easyJet)".

Volotea's policy is similar: if flights should be changed or canceled by the Spanish company (the only case in which a refund is required), "we will inform you via the associated email or telephone when booking ", offering three possibilities: accepting the new departure time for another flight in the event of a change; choose another more convenient date for the passenger, "as long as it is within 7 days of the original flight date"; obtain a refund of the total amount of the reservation. "In the event of a cancellation, we will make sure to refund your booking amount as soon as possible," the company explains.

If it is not the company that cancels the flight, but the customer, coverage is offered free insurance, included in all flights, in the event that the passenger or one of the travel companions test positive for a Covid test carried out "up to 14 days before the flight, you will be able to obtain a full refund of your booking". To do this, you will need to contact the company "and send us an official certificate with the test result" using a form. If the booking was made by May 31, 2021 on the Volotea website or app, for flights departing until September 30, 2021, it is possible to change the flight dates without additional commissions (only fare difference if any).

“The Antitrust has ascertained the incorrect behavior of airlines that used the Covid excuse to cancel semi-empty or low-paying flights, without recognizing refunds and compensation to travelers - explains the president of Assoutenti Furio Truzzi -. We remind you that in the event of flight cancellation, in addition to ticket reimbursement, the EU Regulation 261/2004 recognizes a pecuniary compensation from 250 to 600 euros per passenger, a right that has been denied by air carriers justifying the cancellations for reasons attributable to Covid ".

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