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Australian Watchdog Forces Flight Centre To Refund Cancellation Fees

 |  May 3, 2020

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) welcomed the announcement that Flight Centre will stop charging customers hundreds of dollars in cancellation fees in order to get a refund for travel cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Flight Centre will refund thousands of customers who, from 13 March, were charged AU$300 (US$192.60) per person to get a refund for a cancelled international flight or AU$50 (US$32.10) for a domestic flight.

This policy will also apply to cancellation fees charged by Aunt Betty, Travel Associates, Student Universe, Universal Traveller, and Jetescape Travel (trading as Byojet Travel), which are part of the Flight Centre group.

Flight Centre’s decision follows weeks of pressure from the ACCC for Flight Centre to improve its treatment of customers during COVID-19 travel restrictions.  

The ACCC stated its next step would have been court action if Flight Centre did not change its position. This announcement will provide faster relief for consumers than would have been likely to have resulted from any court action. 

The ACCC has received a large number of complaints about Flight Centre’s cancellation fees from consumers via its Infocentre, website, and social media channels.

“This is a very welcome move made by Flight Centre for thousands of customers impacted by COVID-19 travel cancellations,” ACCC Chair Rod Sims said.

Full Content: ACCC

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