ACCC notes effort by Qantas

16 December 2011

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has acknowledged additional efforts by Qantas to compensate customers affected by the recent grounding of their fleet.

The ACCC had expressed a view that initial remedies were insufficient. Following further discussions Qantas introduced the additional remedies now being offered to passengers affected by the grounding of the Qantas fleet on 29 October 2011.

"The ACCC is pleased with the additional range of remedies being offered by Qantas," ACCC chairman Rod Sims said.

In particular, Qantas has extended its offer of refunds and compensation for reasonable losses to any consumer that was affected by the grounding. Previously, this had been limited to only those consumers with flights up to and including Wednesday 2 November and did not necessarily extend to consequential loss.

Qantas is providing the ACCC with regular updates on the processing of consumer refunds and compensation claims. The ACCC will continue to monitor these processes to ensure that customers' claims are managed in a timely fashion.

The ACCC has been in close consultation with the state and territory fair trading agencies on this matter. These agencies have played an important role in providing information to passengers on their consumer rights. This has showcased the cooperative arrangements of the new Australian Consumer Law.

On 2 November, the ACCC noted that it continued to make enquiries of Qantas concerning the circumstances surrounding the offering of tickets and acceptance of payments following the decision to ground the fleet. These enquiries revealed that after grounding its fleet Qantas continued to sell tickets for flights which it knew it would be unable to operate.

As the number of tickets sold was small and Qantas has fully compensated the consumers concerned, the ACCC will not pursue this issue further. However the ACCC has asked Qantas to review its systems and indicated that any similar breaches in future are likely to be treated as more serious matters.

Release number: 
NR 248/11
ACCC Infocentre: 

Use this form to make a general enquiry.

Media enquiries: 
Mr Duncan Harrod - (02) 6243 1108 or 0408 995 408