travel firms that are breaking the law over package holiday refunds. Ryanair passengers who booked after 10 June can change flights departing up the end of November for free, with at least seven days notice, but take care that you don’t get ripped off when rebooking. It might be worth waiting to rebook as customer services are experiencing an extremely high volume of calls, although there’s a danger fares will rise while you wait. Many people are telling us that the airline websites aren’t working, or they can’t reach the carrier to request a refund. This applies for all flights on any airline that departs from an EU country, as well as Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and the UK, and flights on any EU carrier from any airport. Those who have tried to claim a refund online say they’ve accidentally been sent a voucher instead and, once issued, BA is refusing to exchange vouchers for cash. Can I get a refund? Many people are telling us that the airline websites aren’t working, or they can’t reach the carrier to request a refund. Unlike with flights and package holidays, you’re not necessarily entitled to a refund if your holiday cottage booking is cancelled due to coronavirus. If your travel operator tells you to claim on your insurance, get this in writing. After sending some info and uploading some documents, I received a refund of €600. reported Wizz Air to the CAA and CMA for not following guidelines. This is despite the fact that holidaymakers taking those flights will invalidate their travel insurance, unless they have specialist cover. In lieu of refunds, passengers told the DOT that carriers are offering them vouchers or credits for future travel. United Airlines last week reported that it has cut about 80 percent of its capacity in April and anticipates larger cuts in May. The European Union on Wednesday issued a similar statement, saying EU law requires reimbursements to be made within seven days. “The obligation of airlines to provide refunds, including the ticket price and any optional fee charged for services a passenger is unable to use, does not cease when the flight disruptions are outside of the carrier’s control,” the agency said. But on Friday, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) issued a notice to U.S. and foreign airlines reminding them that they remain obligated to provide “a prompt refund to passengers for flights to, within, or from the United States when the carrier cancels the passenger’s scheduled flight or makes a significant schedule change and the passenger chooses not to accept the alternative offered by the carrier.” (Lawmakers in Europe followed suit days later, with EU Transport Commissioner Adina Valean rejecting calls from airlines to relax refund rules.). Given the avalanche of cancellations, airlines have been steering customers toward the option of obtaining a future flight credit if their flight has been canceled due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Airlines must fully refund airfare to passengers whose flights have been canceled during the outbreak of Covid-19, the U.S. Transportation Department ordered on Friday. Some suppliers have been better than others – find out who you should book your next holiday with. For more information on travel corridors, as well as which countries you actually visit for a holiday, see our general travel corridor Q&A. Wizz Air customers who want to cancel flights due to FCDO advice have to pay a fee to claim a refund and cannot swap free of charge onto another flight. Have a confidential tip for our reporters? If it still won’t do the right thing, you could try to claim through your card provider.
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