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Qantas agrees to pay $120 million over cancelled flights

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Qantas and the ACCC have reached a settlement that could include the airline paying $120 million over selling tickets for cancelled flights.
Qantas cancelled flights

Qantas has agreed to pay $120 million in fines and compensation over allegations it sold tickets to cancelled flights.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) alleged over 86,000 customers purchased seats that Qantas had advertised, despite the airline planning to cancel those services.

The fines must now be approved by the Federal Court. However, Qantas said it would start compensating customers immediately.

Here’s the latest.

Federal Court

The ACCC launched action against Qantas in the Federal Court. It alleged the airline advertised over 8,000 flights which it planned to cancel from 2021 to 2022.

Qantas services within Australia and to New Zealand made up 94% of cancelled flights.

The competition watchdog also alleged that Qantas failed to immediately notify customers about cancellations for over 10,000 flights over the last two years.

Settlement

Qantas and the ACCC have reached a settlement deal that could include the airline paying a $100 million penalty. It will pay an additional $20 million in compensation to customers.

Qantas will pay $225 to impacted domestic passengers, and $450 to impacted international ticket holders, in addition to any refunds or alternative flights that may have already been given.

The airline will be required to stop selling tickets for flights within 24 hours of cancelling a service. This also applies to Jetstar, which it owns.

Response

Qantas said it is “sincerely sorry” to customers who “were affected by our failure to provide cancellation notifications in a timely manner”.

ACCC Chair Gina Cass-Gottlieb said she expects this penalty to “send a strong deterrence message to other companies.”

“Qantas has also agreed not to repeat this type of conduct in the future,” Cass-Gottlieb said.

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