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Flight refund claims valid for 12 months

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ISLANDERS have been told they have up to a year to claim refunds for cancelled flights – although airlines have been accused of making it difficult for customers to reclaim their money.

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More flights in and out of Jersey have been cancelled over recent days and on easyJet has now grounded its entire fleet.

People are entitled to full refunds but customers have become increasingly critical of the airlines for not providing an option online to claim.

Instead they are having to phone call centres, which can take hours or even days to get through to.

Carl Walker, chairman of the Jersey Consumer Council, has issued some guidance on helping Islanders to get their money back.

He said: ‘It is very disappointing to see that both BA and easyJet are making it as difficult as possible for Islanders to claim a full refund for their tickets.

‘If an airline cancels your flight, you are entitled to a full refund.

‘But it is clear that both these major airlines are trying to influence consumers to take vouchers instead. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this, as they are still offering the refund option, but only via the call centre, which obviously can take a very long time.

‘My advice to consumers would be to wait for a few days at least, to allow the rush to subside. Then, pick your call times carefully. The start of the day is likely to be very busy, but late in the evening there may be less of a wait time on the phone.

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‘And, consumers have a year to the day from the original flight date to claim the refund, so there is plenty of time. And, looking at the increasing pressure both airlines are coming under, I would not be surprised if an online refund option appears at some point.’

A spokeswoman for easyJet said customers could change flights free of charge or they could claim a refund back over the phone but she warned this could take longer than usual.

A British Airways spokesman confirmed refunds were available by phone 12 months after cancellation.

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