On 15 May, Wizz Air left its passengers in Paris, who were supposed to fly to Budapest. The first news was that all victims were entitled to EUR 250. However, this was overturned on the grounds of weather conditions. There was a new twist: some people did receive the money, but the company said it was an administrative error.
This spring, on 15 May, Wizz Air cancelled its flight from Paris Orly Airport to Budapest. Passengers were informed by SMS and e-mail that evening. The flight from the Hungarian capital could not land at Paris airport due to a major storm. As a result, the plane was diverted to Brussels.
The journalist of 24.hu would have taken the same plane home. He was stuck at the airport with nearly 200 other passengers. The Wizz Air customer service was unavailable. Airport staff helped people to get to various hotels at around 2 am. It was impossible to rebook for the next day’s flight. And Wizz Air did not send a relief flight. Many people were forced to fly home with other airlines at a much higher cost.
“When a crew’s flying time is up, the rules are clear: our colleagues can no longer fly that day. Returning home with no passengers on a plane is not ideal for us, but at least we can prepare the aircraft for the next day’s flights so that the whole schedule doesn’t fall over like a domino,” says Robert Carey, President of Wizz Air.
Wizz Air referred to EU Regulation 261/2004. Under this, if the airline cancels a flight, it is liable to pay compensation of between EUR 250 and EUR 600, depending on the destination.
Claims for compensation are supposed to be answered within 30 days, but this has been delayed in several cases, with the airline citing traffic. Wizz Air later said that as the cancellation was due to extraordinary circumstances, no compensation would be paid, blikk.hu writes.
Wizz Air spoke out about the incident. “A passenger on the flight in question received compensation for an error in the administrative system, which was not due to him, and the passenger was informed of the error by the airline. The passenger will of course not have to repay the compensation sent out in error,” the company says.
The Ministry of Justice has recently announced that a consumer protection investigation has been opened against Wizz Air by the Government Office in Budapest. There has been a significant increase in the number of consumer complaints lodged with the consumer protection authority against the airline. The airline did not provide information, accommodation or reply within 30 days. It also operates a premium-rate call centre in violation of the law and the rights of Hungarian consumers.
Source: 24.hu, blikk.hu