British Airways blames flight cancellations on Covid-19 – and refuses to pay compensation

On the day when British Airways cancelled one other 120-plus flights to and from its primary base, London Heathrow, it has emerged that the airline is rejecting compensation claims for grounded flights.

BA has critical resourcing points which is resulting in the every day cancellation of many home and European flights.

The airline says that the majority passengers are knowledgeable nicely upfront. But when travellers are given lower than two weeks’ discover, below European air passengers’ rights guidelines they’re entitled to money compensation of between £220 and £520 – relying on the size of the flight.

The one grounds on which a service can reject a declare is that if an “extraordinary circumstance” was accountable.

Nick Goodess was on account of fly from London Heathrow to Hanover on 24 April. His flight was cancelled with every week’s discover, and he utilized for the statutory compensation.

However the passenger was informed: “Your declare’s been refused as a result of flight BA978 on 24 April was cancelled on account of the worldwide pandemic brought on by Covid-19.

“The Covid-19 pandemic is an exterior issue, which is past the management of the airline and is an ‘extraordinary circumstance’.

“It isn’t inherent within the regular exercise of the airline and couldn’t have been anticipated.

“Because the cancellation of the flight was brought on by restrictions imposed on account of a worldwide pandemic, in accordance with the provisions of EC Regulation 261/2004, I’m afraid this implies you aren’t entitled to obtain EU compensation on this event.”

Legal professionals contacted by The Unbiased have expressed scepticism over the British Airways defence. Workers scarcity will not be thought to be an “extraordinary circumstance”.

The declare that “the cancellation of the flight was brought on by restrictions imposed on account of a worldwide pandemic” seems to be tough to maintain, one authorized knowledgeable mentioned.

The Unbiased has requested British Airways for a response on this and different facets of the rejection. BA remains to be trying into the case.

On the day Mr Goodess had his flight cancelled, dozens of different companies operated between the UK and Germany.

Whereas easyJet is making round 30 cancellations per day, different rivals – together with Jet2, Ryanair and Wizz Air – are sustaining their regular schedules.

A spokesperson for the Civil Aviation Authority mentioned: “If prospects are involved that airways usually are not upholding their rights appropriately then they need to complain to their airline. If they don’t seem to be glad with the response, shoppers can search redress through the accredited Various Dispute Decision (ADR) service.”

British Airways is registered with CEDR. A unique service supplier, AviationADR, sided with Ryanair in a current denied boarding case – though the airline offered no defence.

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