'Super Complaint' against airlines

We all know how annoying it can be when we find the cheap flight or holiday of our dreams, only to get to the checkout and find that some things are too good to be true, especially those pesky hidden charges.

Well, now those hidden charges could be a thing of the past, as consumer group Which is about to make a ‘Super Complaint’ to the Office of Fair Trading (OFT). A ‘super complaint’ allows organisations to bring multiple complaints against a number of bodies where they feel those bodies are acting unfairly. A similar thing happened recently regarding bank charges.

These charges are banned in many European countries and capped in others. ‘Rip-off Britain’ is back again with a vengeance. Which is due to make the complaint by the end of March this year and the OFT has 90 days to respond to it.

Which Chief Executive Peter Vicary-Smith commented that there was no excuse for inflated charges, suggesting that it was just a way of boosting profits when companies should not be allowed to make a profit out of it. He added that the practice was common among, but by no means limited to, budget airlines.

The consumer group published a hit list of offenders last October, and that list included Easyjet, Ryanair, Flybe, First Choice and Monarch airlines. The practice has even spread to cinemas, Local Authorities and even the DVLA. Which added that for debit cards, the average cost of each transaction is only 20p, and for credit cards the fee is 2% of the value of the transaction,

Other bodies, including Consumer Focus and the UK Cards Association have welcomed the move by Which, saying that the charges were unfair on consumers and that it was time consumers had a voice on the matter.