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Passenger Rights during the COVID-19 pandemic

European scrutiny

The European Commission has issued a Communication providing advice on existing air, rail, road and maritime passenger rights rules and how they are to be interpreted in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, the Commission is clear that airlines must offer passengers the option of a refund for their cancelled flights (and not just a credit voucher). It has, however, defined the COVID-19 pandemic as an "extraordinary circumstance" that exempts air and maritime operators from paying compensation for delays and cancellations. 

We have written to the Government for its assessment on the desirability of airlines offering credit vouchers instead of refunds to passengers. In this context, we note efforts by some EU Member States ahead of a previous informal meeting of transport ministers to persuade the Commission to introduce a temporary rule that would allow for the provision of vouchers instead of refunds. The Government has now responded and we have cleared the item from scrutiny. 

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  • Phone: 020 7219 6099 (committee staff) | 020 7219 6640 (Press Officer)
  • Address: EU Goods Sub-Committee, House of Lords, London SW1A 0PW