How to check if you’re owed a refund from airlines

An investigation found that airlines owe millions in CCJs (Jimmy Chan / Pexels)
An investigation found that airlines owe millions in CCJs (Jimmy Chan / Pexels)

Airlines owe UK passengers millions of pounds in refunds and expenses, a new investigation has found.

An investigation by Which? found that airlines, including Wizz Air and Ryanair, owe around £4.5 million in county court judgments (CCJs).

Rocio Concha, Which? director of policy and advocacy, said: “The scale of court judgments piling up against major airlines is a result of a system where the odds are stacked against passengers and airlines feel empowered to routinely ignore their legal obligations to pay out refunds and compensation.”

As well as Ryanair and Wizz Air, Tui Airways and British Airways are among the airlines that have outstanding CCJs.

How to find out if you’re owed a refund from an airline

Refund and cancellation policies vary by airline, but this information is typically available on their website.

You may be owed a refund if the airline cancels your flight and fails to book an appropriate replacement flight.

In some cases, passengers can also claim expenses from the airline: for example, if they were rebooked onto a flight for the following day and had to spend money on a hotel.

Furthermore, if your flight is delayed by more than three hours and it is the airline’s fault, you’re entitled to compensation from the airline.

To claim a refund, contact the airline directly. You may be able to do this through your online account. Alternatively, contact customer service by phone or email.

Finally, if you believe an airline has failed to meet its legal obligations, customers can take their case to adjudication services such as AviationADR or CEDR.

If the case isn’t successful, customers can use the gGovernment’s Money Claims Online service to pursue payments through county courts. A CCJ can then be issued to the company, which requires them to pay the customer.

Meanwhile, Which? is calling on the Government and regulators to take urgent action over the millions owed in CCJs.