Easyjet Cancellation Vouchers In Leau Of Cash Refund

AlexEB
AlexEB Posts: 2 Newbie
edited 3 August 2023 at 2:41PM in Flight delay compensation

I thought this would be interesting to anyone who had their Easyjet flights cancelled due to covid, but weren’t offered a cash refund.

Easyjet cancelled my flights when the FCO advised against non-essential air travel due to covid. The airline was obliged to offer me a cash refund, but rail roaded me into accepting a voucher for future travel.

I approached the airline in December 2022, but they refused to back down saying that I had accepted the voucher.

I then proceeded to file my complaint with the Aviation Alternative Disputes Resolution (ADR) service, whom took 33 weeks to decide in my favour.

If you were forced into accepting a voucher during this time and weren’t offered your money back, then you have every right to ask for a cash refund. Just don’t expect it anytime soon!

All the best,

Alex

ps: Here is the determination from the ADR adjudicator. You might be able to quote some of this in your initial communications with Easy Jet:

5. DETERMINATION: 5.1 I must base my determination i) on the facts and evidence provided ii) on what is fair and reasonable in the circumstances and iii) in accordance with applicable laws and regulations and AviationADR’s policies and scheme rules. 5.2 The Passenger is requesting a full monetary refund of the Flight ticket costs, which they state the Airline is obligated to reimburse. The Airline has stated that they paid the Passenger the Flight ticket costs in the form of a Flight voucher and have provided a Passenger Name Record (“PNR”) in support of this. The Airline has stated that the reimbursement for the Flights was provided as a Flight voucher due to the Passenger accepting this. The Airline has further states “as the Flights were cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, all passengers were offered discretionary flight vouchers”. However, the Passenger has stated that whilst they chose the Flight voucher, they only did so as they were not offered a monetary refund, and further that the Flight’s cancellation email did not include the option of a monetary refund. The Airline has not stated nor demonstrated that the Passenger was offered a monetary reimbursement of the Flight ticket costs. I am satisfied that the Passenger is eligible for the option of a reimbursement of the Flight ticket costs in monetary form in accordance with Article 8.1 of the Regulation. I refer to Paragraph 4.2 of the EC261/2004 Interpretive Guidelines: “…in the case of two flights which are part of the same contract…, passengers should be offered two options in the event of cancellation of the outbound flight: i) to be reimbursed for the whole ticket (i.e. both flights) or ii) to be re-routed on another flight for the outbound flight”. Whilst I acknowledge this specifically refers to a case where the outbound and return flights are made by different carriers, I am satisfied that the Passenger is entitled to the same options, including a refund of the whole ticket price, where the outbound and return flights are purchased under a single contract with the same carrier. This is due to the fact that the return journey no longer serves a purpose where the Passenger cannot travel on the rerouting option(s) offered by the Airline for the outbound flight, which occurred in this case. I am further satisfied on the balance of probability that the options available to the Passenger following the cancellation did not give the Passenger a specific option of obtaining a monetary refund. I do not consider that the Airline has demonstrated that they offered the Passenger the option of a monetary refund at the time of the cancellation of the Flight, and as the Passenger wished for a monetary refund, I am further satisfied on the balance of probability that the Passenger did not give their agreement to a travel voucher in lieu of a monetary payment. Additionally, I refer to the Commission Recommendation (EU) 2020/648 of 13 May 2020, Recommended Characteristics of Vouchers Point 4 which states the following: “If vouchers have a validity period longer than 12 months, passengers and travellers should have the right to ask for reimbursement in money no later than 12 months after the issuance of the voucher concerned. They should have the same right at any moment thereafter subject to applicable legal provisions on time limitation. Carriers and organisers could consider making vouchers refundable at a point in time earlier than 12 months after the issuance of the voucher concerned if the passenger or traveller so requests.” The above indicates that the Passenger may be entitled to a cash refund equivalent to the value of the voucher. Whilst I acknowledge that the above is a recommendation only and is not a legal requirement, I am not satisfied that the Airline has demonstrated that the Passenger was given the express option of a refund at the time of the cancellation. As such, I am satisfied that the Passenger did not choose to have the Flight ticket reimbursed in the form of a Flight voucher in lieu of monetary payment. Therefore, I determine that the Airline pay the Passenger the value of the Passenger’s portion of the Booking in monetary form. Given that neither party has demonstrated a breakdown of the Flight ticket costs for the Passenger, I determine that 50% of the Booking costs be reimbursed to the Passenger.


Comments

  • PHK
    PHK Posts: 1,247 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    I'm not sure that entirely matches your post but anyway the decision seems to hinge on the airline not stating or showing that they offered a choice of voucher or monetary refund. 

    No doubt in future cases they will evidence that they did!
  • Caz3121
    Caz3121 Posts: 15,539 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Anniversary First Post
    I had EasyJet flights cancelled at the start of the pandemic - phoned them up, requested refund and had it back in my account within 5 days. I don't recall being pushed towards vouchers instead. You would always be due a refund if the airline cancels the flight - different from choosing to cancel a flight that did operate due to non-essential travel being advised against (or any other reason)...in which case the CMA could not prove a refund was due and vouchers were deemed acceptable (I voluntarily cancelled some flights which did operate and got vouchers)
  • eskbanker
    eskbanker Posts: 30,746 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper Photogenic First Post
    Caz3121 said:
    I had EasyJet flights cancelled at the start of the pandemic - phoned them up, requested refund and had it back in my account within 5 days. I don't recall being pushed towards vouchers instead. You would always be due a refund if the airline cancels the flight - different from choosing to cancel a flight that did operate due to non-essential travel being advised against (or any other reason)...in which case the CMA could not prove a refund was due and vouchers were deemed acceptable (I voluntarily cancelled some flights which did operate and got vouchers)
    At the risk of being pedantic, airlines can cancel flights, whereas passengers can only cancel bookings/tickets/reservations on those flights - I'm sure you'll be well aware of this and will also have seen plenty of threads where using 'cancelling flights' interchangeably for either has led to confusion!  In this case, OP does clarify that "Easyjet cancelled my flights", so it's clear that a refund was due....
Meet your Ambassadors

Categories

  • All Categories
  • 342.9K Banking & Borrowing
  • 250K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 449.6K Spending & Discounts
  • 235K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 607.6K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 172.9K Life & Family
  • 247.7K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.9K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards