Refund for flights 'not fit for purpose'?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Flights, Currency & Car Hire
6 replies 1.1K views
Voyager2002Voyager2002 Forumite
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edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Flights, Currency & Car Hire
My neighbour's experience poses an interesting question:

He rescued some old friends who ended up stranded and uninsured in Cambodia (long story). Since they were penniless and receiving assistance from the British Embassy there, he used his own visa card to buy air tickets on-line to get them back to the UK. Naturally, he bought the cheapest flights available and so used a site called kiwi.com, which puts together flights from several different airlines to get a passenger from one place to another at the lowest possible cost.

Unfortunately, the cheapest routing that this site offered him involved a change of 'planes in India, and a visa for India is needed for this. For some reason the required visa could not be issued to a British citizen in Cambodia (he has a document stating this from the British embassy there). So, within 18 hours after booking he knew that the flights could not used and therefore contacted the OTA to request cancellation or re-routing. They are of course refusing, and in fact he then pushed his credit card to the limit and bought a completely different set of tickets (so the friends are now back in the UK and in fact staying with him).

My neighbour is now disputing the charge for the unused and unusable tickets with his credit card provider (Nationwide). Any thoughts as to whether he is likely to succeed in getting his money back?

(I visited the agent's web-site: for the flights in question there is a statement that a visa MAY be required, and clicking this produces a statement that is virtually incomprehensible but relates to people of Indian origin making an extended visit to India and says nothing about airport transit. There is no link to any official website.)

Replies

  • Caz3121Caz3121 Forumite
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    It is always the passengers responsibility to ensure they have the documentation required for the flights...
    kiwi.com website states
    Kiwi.com can only provide a warning that a visa may be required for your travel.
    Please carefully check which countries you are going through before making your booking. A visa is generally required even for transit purposes & re-checking your baggage.
    Since each nationality has their own unique set of visa requirements, we will not be able to advise you on any visa issue, this is the sole responsibility of the passenger.


    Some airlines offer a 24 hour cancellation when booking direct with them but this does not apply when booking through an agent.
    This leaves the issue regarding refund based on the fare rules of the ticket.
  • What was the routing? The India information I found was perfectly comprehensible:

    Visa required.
    The following are exempt from holding a visa:

    Passengers with an "Overseas Citizen of India" card or booklet.
    Passengers with a "Person of Indian Origin" card.
    Transiting without a visa is possible for:

    Holders of confirmed onward tickets for a max. transit time of 24 hours.
    Hotel facilities are available in Terminal 3 at Delhi (DEL), provided holding boarding card for connecting flight.
  • Voyager2002Voyager2002 Forumite
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    What was the routing? The India information I found was perfectly comprehensible:

    Visa required.
    The following are exempt from holding a visa:

    Passengers with an "Overseas Citizen of India" card or booklet.
    Passengers with a "Person of Indian Origin" card.
    Transiting without a visa is possible for:

    Holders of confirmed onward tickets for a max. transit time of 24 hours.
    Hotel facilities are available in Terminal 3 at Delhi (DEL), provided holding boarding card for connecting flight.

    The routing was through Kolkata (arrival on Air Asia, departure on Qatar Airlines).

    The visa information that you quote is different from that given on the OTA's website.
  • The routing was through Kolkata (arrival on Air Asia, departure on Qatar Airlines).

    The visa information that you quote is different from that given on the OTA's website.

    It would be helpful if you quoted it. The information I quoted is from their website.
  • HeliflyguyHeliflyguy Forumite
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    Could it be considered a visa rejection? if so QR rules allow a refund.

    WAIVERS -
    WAIVED FOR DEATH OF PASSENGER OR FAMILY MEMBER.
    ALL WAIVERS HAS TO BE PROCESSED THROUGH QR
    OFFICES ONLY AND SUPPORTING DOCUMENT HAS TO BE
    PRESENTED.
    FULL REFUND PERMITTED BEFORE DEPARTURE IN CASE OF
    REJECTION OF VISA. WAIVERS HAS TO BE PROCESSED
    THROUGH QR OFFICES ONLY AND EMBASSY STATEMENT HAS
    TO BE PRESENTED AS SUPPORTING DOCUMENT
  • jpsartrejpsartre Forumite
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    Hopefully the bank will come after him for attempting to abuse the card chargeback facility. It is meant to protect people against fraud, it is not a get-out-of-jail-free card for people who change their minds about a non-refundable purchase.
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