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Old 28.04.2008, 17:56
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Rant about easyJet

I fly easyJet fairly regularly to and from the UK and occasionally to other places as well. On 13th March, I was booked on a late flight from Geneva to Liverpool. at 10.30 pm, an hour after scheduled take-off, we were told that the plane had been cancelled for unspecified "technical reasons" and that we should report back the next day, when the plane would be fixed. In the meantime, there were no hotels available within 100km of the airport because of the Salon des Autos and that if we could find our own accommodation, we should do so and would be reimbursed. So I drove 160km home and came back the next day.

I wrote to easyJet a few days later, claiming reimbursement for my mileage and the standard €250 for a cancelled flight. I eventually received an e-mail to say that if I wanted to be reimbursed for costs incurred, I needed to send receipts (for mileage???), and that the €250 compensation was not payable as the technical fault was an "Extraordinary circumstance". Having sent increasingly curt e-mails to them, and received increasingly woolly replies in return, I am convinced that easyJet "customer services" employs people whose sole job us to weasel their way out of paying for anything, ever.

Switzerland adopted EU regulations on cancelled flights at the beginning of 2006 and reading the regulations (and easyJet's standard terms of carriage), it seems to me that "Extraordinary circumstances" encompasses things like famine, war, pestilence and monthly strikes by French air traffic controllers. Not technical faults.

I'm now taking the airline to FOCA, the Swiss equivalent of the CAA. Has anyone else out there had this problem? I would expect it from cheapskates like Ryanair but am astonished that easyJet would also try it on. I'm told that airlines like Lufthansa and Swiss pay compensation without question.

And if anyone else was on this flight and wants to join me in my battle against this bunch of evasive, tight-fisted ******s, please contact me.
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Old 28.04.2008, 17:58
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Re: Rant about easyJet

I can't comment but I wish you luck. Whilst this might change the dynamics of the cheap flights market, they have to be accountable!
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Old 28.04.2008, 18:20
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Re: Rant about easyJet

Thanks Lob. However, I don't even think that easyJet are that cheap any more - this particular round trip cost CHF364 and checked-in luggage would have cost extra.
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Old 28.04.2008, 18:29
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Re: Rant about easyJet

I had a similar complaint against British Airways on a Heathrow to Zurich flight. In the end their intransigence wore me down, and I forgot about it. The reason the flight was cancelled was because they couldn't find a captain to take the flight due to rotational issues. They claimed that was an Extraordinary circumstance
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Old 28.04.2008, 18:40
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Re: Rant about easyJet

You will find more information about this here.
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Old 28.04.2008, 18:51
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Re: Rant about easyJet

You get what you pay for: though at CHF364 you may have found Swiss or BA a better bet and you would have eventually got there - though the same could not be said for your luggage.

I had a similar experience. We were already in the departure lounge at Zurich when Easyjet announced the plane to London was cancelled. We were on the was to my niece's wedding in the UK. It transpired that the French air-traffic system had collapsed, so flights with BA, Swiss etc were flying, but were running hours late.

Easyjet could not offer another flight to the UK for two days and BA etc could only offer flights that would arrive during the wedding ceremony. So we went back home.

We received a full refund within a week.

It is easyjet policy to try and keep on time. They do this by simply killing flights that will be a number of hours late.

Moral of the story? If you want try and guarantee your get somewhere, don't use easyjet...

PS: I think a receipt for petrol would have been considered.
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Old 28.04.2008, 19:05
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Re: Rant about easyJet

I thought the 250 Euro compensation came in as part of the air passenger rights introduced by the European Union and so only applies to flights originating in the EU which CH isn't. Whether it covers CH or not the big let out is that "extraordinary circumstances" clause which lets them off the hook for anything outside their control like bad weather, air controllers strikes, security alerts etc. The wording of that clause is so vague that airlines seem to invoke it to wriggle off the hook for cancellations due to a host of other reasons like crew illness and technical faults. You would have thought that if the goal was to protect passengers then bad weather and technical faults would be covered since most cancellations are due to those two events. Good luck.

On the questions of receipts it's standard practice to demand receipts - they are within their rights. I sent BA mine, they acknowledge receipt but lost them and wouldn't pay out costs until I produced copies. By the time they responded so much time elapsed that I couldn't find copies so I ended up with zero. Like Castro I gave up in the end but haven't flown them since.

Good for you in going to the ATUC. Let us know how you get on. You'll need stamina! You could also log your complaint here:
http://www.airlinequality.com
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Old 28.04.2008, 19:36
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Re: Rant about easyJet

Switzerland has adopted the same passenger rights as the EU, so the compensation also applies to flights originating in Switzerland.
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Old 28.04.2008, 19:45
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Re: Rant about easyJet

They were circumstances directly within the control of the airline and should have been covered. The airline plans the rosters and should be responsible when they **** up.

dave


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I had a similar complaint against British Airways on a Heathrow to Zurich flight. In the end their intransigence wore me down, and I forgot about it. The reason the flight was cancelled was because they couldn't find a captain to take the flight due to rotational issues. They claimed that was an Extraordinary circumstance
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Old 28.04.2008, 20:15
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Re: Rant about easyJet

I've done quite a bit or research on this and there are many complaints about supposed cheap airlines trying to wriggle out of their responsibilities when it comes to cancellations. For the "World's Favourite Airline" also to be doing it shows that they really have become the heap of excrement that recent publicity suggests. It also shows that the supposed EU consumer protection legislation isn't working. I'm sure that the powers that be in the EU are far too busy dreaming up ever-more imaginative ways of fiddling their expenses to do anything about it. I have more faith in Swiss arbitration and I'll update on progress in due course.
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Old 28.04.2008, 22:26
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Re: Rant about easyJet

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You get what you pay for:

It is easyjet policy to try and keep on time. They do this by simply killing flights that will be a number of hours late.

Moral of the story? If you want try and guarantee your get somewhere, don't use easyjet...
And maybe budget airlines are more likely to kill flights that have a low passenger payload? Add to that folks don't use them to make lucrative long- haul connections?

Thinking this through a bit, I'm ambivalent on this whole cost vs service thing. On the one hand we demand cheap flights for under 50 quid but expect them to fork out a few hundred if things don't go to plan. We can't have it both ways. Easyjet fly Geneva - Liverpool during the Summer/Autumn period when other airlines have stopped flights to the North of England (Manchester/Leeds etc) as soon as the Ski season ends in April. If they have a genuine problem they can't switch us to other providers - there are none on that route so there's no option but to leave folks stranded. On the whole Easyjet moves millions of people efficently for a reasonable cost. I'd rather have the Summer low season Easyjet service with the cancellation consequences than have them scratch it. The alternative of connecting thru London is horrible cost-wise.
AbFab is right, you do get what you pay for with the budget crowd and for most of the time my experiences on that route have been pretty good. That's no excuse for them trying to avoid compensation where compensation is rightly due. And maybe they should all be a bit more up front with the exclusions rather than burying them in the small print like they used to hide the add-ons to the headline promotional internet rates. At least they haven't installed coin operated toilets...yet. But even with the surcharges for credit card payments, check in bags, priority boarding and in flight food they're still cheaper than the majors and the majors would charge a lot more if it weren't for the low cost crowd. When things go wrong, the consequences of flying with BA et al can be just as bad as flying with Easyjet and the like. You just pay more for the inconvenience.
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Old 28.04.2008, 22:53
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Re: Rant about easyJet

Before giving up I'd ask some help from professionals like EUclaim ( http://www.euclaim.co.uk/) . It's a no cure no pay service, and they know the tricks.
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Old 28.04.2008, 23:09
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Re: Rant about easyJet

So according to the website quote below, you should get 73% of the compensation amount claimed. That is the only indication I could find on the website of how much this company would take of the compensation claim.

Note as indicated the company will attempt to charge additional costs for their own benefit, indulging in a second bite of the cherry.

This service may suit some people, but be aware of how it works and how much it will cost.

dave


From the EUclaim (company based in Netherlands) website:

"We will take care of the whole claim process, and when the airline has paid the claim to us, we will transfer the claim amount minus administration and collection fees (over 73% of the amount claimed will be transfered) to your account. Note: we work with No-Win-No-Fee method!

....

Article 4 Prices

4.1. All prices of EUclaim are expressed in EURO and inclusive of turnover tax (VAT), all this unless otherwise stated in writing.
4.2. EUclaim is entitled to charge your other party (extrajudicial collection) costs, which costs will be entirely for the benefit of EUclaim upon payment by the other party."


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Before giving up I'd ask some help from professionals like EUclaim ( http://www.euclaim.co.uk/) . It's a no cure no pay service, and they know the tricks.
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Old 28.04.2008, 23:11
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Re: Rant about easyJet

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And maybe budget airlines are more likely to kill flights that have a low passenger payload? Add to that folks don't use them to make lucrative long- haul connections?.
Some payload is better than no payload and fees on top. As much as 75% of the cost base of an EasyJet size airline is fixed, so you might try to recoup as much of it as possible.
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Old 29.04.2008, 09:32
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Re: Rant about easyJet

[quote=Beanie101;216046]
we were told that the plane had been cancelled for unspecified "technical reasons"

Feel really sorry for you. What a mess. A real load of frustration.
Great that Forum members more legally versed than I am can give advice.
What have I done to be so lucky?
So far on Easyjet I have always had cheap flights, never had a flight cancelled, even missed the flight twice and been able to go on next one at no extra cost (on one occasion alone and the second time there were three of us!)
I keep my fingers crossed that you get at least some of the money back.
Nothing can compensate you for the loss of time and the stress of the extra journey.
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Old 29.04.2008, 10:48
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Re: Rant about easyJet

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Before giving up I'd ask some help from professionals like EUclaim ( http://www.euclaim.co.uk/) . It's a no cure no pay service, and they know the tricks.
Looks good, I'd have pursued Swiss, Aer Lingus and Ryanair through them if I'd known about it sooner.
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Old 29.04.2008, 10:54
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Re: Rant about easyJet

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Thanks Lob. However, I don't even think that easyJet are that cheap any more - this particular round trip cost CHF364 and checked-in luggage would have cost extra.
And this is why I try to fly Swiss as much as possible. I do not do Easy Jet or Ryan Air.
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Old 29.04.2008, 10:56
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Re: Rant about easyJet

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And this is why I try to fly Swiss as much as possible. I do not do Easy Jet or Ryan Air.
Swiss are worse than Easyjet IMO. They have a habit of canceling the midday Sunday Manchester > Zürich flight when, suspiciously, there are just enough seats for everybody on the evening flight.
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Old 29.04.2008, 11:09
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Re: Rant about easyJet

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Swiss are worse than Easyjet IMO. They have a habit of canceling the midday Sunday Manchester > Zürich flight when, suspiciously, there are just enough seats for everybody on the evening flight.
The difference is that 'conventional' airlines will get you on another flight - even with another airline without charge. The 'Easyjets' simply drop the flight and can only offer alternatives with them, which may be full for some days.

When my flight was cancelled we were told to report the the easyjet counter in the check-in hall (ie go from the departure lounge, through passport check, collect cases first). There were 100 people in the queue in front of me. I went to the front to see what was going on and they were booking people on planes the next day. I reckoned by the time I got there, I would be leaving after my return flight got back - so I gave up...
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Old 29.04.2008, 12:14
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Re: Rant about easyJet

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Swiss are worse than Easyjet IMO. They have a habit of canceling the midday Sunday Manchester > Zürich flight when, suspiciously, there are just enough seats for everybody on the evening flight.
This has happened to me twice, once on boxing day where I had to fly to London and get a connecting flight to Manchester I was first informed of this when checking in for my original flight! Another time they just scrapped our flight to New York, we could either fly the next day or go to Chicago!
Swiss used to offer good service but not any more. Minors flying alone are now charged Sfr56.00 each way from Manchester to Zürich even though you do all the leg work of checking them in and bringing them to the gate yourself!
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