Unacceptable business tactics by BA?
I would really appreciate advice about how to deal what i think are completely unacceptable business tactics from BA:
In August i booked a package holiday for my husband and I touring India in 2024. The package holiday flights would have included a stopover en route to India. My husband and I are in our late seventies and now prefer to travel business class and minimise our travel time so we opted to arrange our own air travel, flying out to India direct. We chose a premium business class return routing to india offered by BA costing £6,823.82. Outbound to Delhi, returning from Cochin via Dakar with Qatar.
In September BA emailed us, changing our return routing. We were now to fly with Vistara from Cochin to Delhi in economy class and hang around at Delhi for over four hours for a BA business class flight home.
This is not the premium arrangement which we had booked and paid for. Indeed when I checked online this exact return offering even including business class from Cochin to Delhi and reserved seats was costing only £4670.82. My husband and I felt cheated so I rang BA asking to have our original routing reinstated. When I was told this was not possible I asked if I was entitled to a full refund of my £6,823.82 original booking if we cancelled the whole booking now because of the changes made to it by BA. BA confirmed that I was entitled to a full refund and that the refund would be exactly £6,823.82. On this clear basis I cancelled the whole booking.
I then immediately made a completely new business class booking with BA.
To date, despite numerous telephone calls and three recorded delivery letters (to BA CEO, Customer Services and Press Office) we have received a refund of only £3,358.86. Worse we arranged chargeback for the remainder via our credit card provider and BA rejected our claim so the chargeback was then returned to them.
Our bank cannot help us further without concrete evidence of the BA refund promise. I have been refused a copy of the recording of the refund and cancellation phone conversation (my evidence) by BA for two months now so have just raised a complaint about this with the Information Commissioners Office. (I am waiting to hear from them).
BA have since downgraded the internal India part of our new booking to economy class too. When I rang up to confirm that we would accept this (we were tired of all the changes) if we were refunded the price difference between business class and economy (approx £400) we were told the exact refund would have to be calculated after we had flown.
BA now owe me £3,464.96 (the balance of the original refund) + £400 (for the second change of class) + £22.05 (for having to send 3 x recorded delivery letters) + damages for the HOURS and HOURS of my time all this arguing has cost me.
AND - an important question - if both the online bookings and the verbal contracts made through BA call centres cannot be trusted where on earth does that leave BA's customers?
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