EUJET COLLAPSE UNDERLINES TRANSPORT COMMITTEE’S FEARS FOR STRANDED BUDGET AIRLINE PASSENGERS
ANNOUNCEMENT OF FURTHER COMMITTEE HEARING IN THE AUTUMN
Gwyneth Dunwoody MP, Chairman of the House of Commons Transport Committee, said:
“The collapse of EUJet left thousands stranded with no financial support, and many more who had booked flights are out of pocket.
“The Transport Committee warned in a report published last year that many travellers with low cost airlines have little or no protection under the current compensation rules. We asked the Government to take action swiftly to address this significant problem but nothing has been done. Our report specifically pointed out that ‘Government delay and prevarication will only increase the risk to which travellers are exposed.’ Sadly, but entirely predictably, this has turned out to be the case.
“The Government has not even managed to reply to our report almost a year after its publication. We are, therefore, announcing a hearing to be held in the Autumn at which we shall be asking the Government to explain its position. The issue must be resolved and protection for scheduled passengers extended, as the report recommended.”
Planestation, owner of budget airline EUJet and Manston Airport in Kent, has gone into voluntary administration. News reports suggested that almost 6,000 EUJet passengers were stranded. A spokeswoman for the Association of British Travel Agents was reported as saying that said that clients with future bookings - press reports put the number at more than 90,000 - were unlikely to get any sort of refund unless they had spent more than £100 and paid by credit card.
The committee published its report Financial Protections for Air Travellers (HC 806-I, Session 2003-04) on 9 July 2004.
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Press Notice 03/2005-06 9 August 2005
Dr John Patterson, Clerk of the Committee