Published on : Thursday, January 18, 2018
Creation of a fund would decrease the competitiveness of airlines and increase costs for European consumers. There are numerous means for passengers to obtain a refund for their airline tickets (via credit card, insurance on credit card or via direct insurance with the airline, travel agency or tour operator). Additionally, travel agents are protected through IATA’s Billing and Settlement Plan, with refunds coming from the settlement between travel agents and IATA.
ERA agrees with IATA’s recommendation of a review into existing bankruptcy laws to permit the continued operations of airlines in insolvency, allowing more passengers to complete their travel, and to consider increased priority for passenger refund claims.
Montserrat Barriga, ERA’s Director General says: “ERA fully supports IATA’s position. The aviation industry has an extremely strong track record in dealing with the repatriation of stranded passengers. The amount of passengers affected compared to the actual total number of passengers carried does not justify the creation of this fund. We consider that specific and more restrictive measures for airlines would be discriminative compared with other means of transport and would also penalise the financially prudent airlines. Aviation sector plays a critical role in the European economy, creating wealth and jobs, and further regulation such as the creation of a fund risks unintended consequences, including making travel more expensive and distorting competition in the marketplace.”