RYANAIR has pledged to clear 90% of its refund backlog by the end of this month.
It confirmed today (July 3) that it had accelerated the refunds process, with extra staff being trained since its Dublin HQ reopened on June 1.
The company has said that all cash refund requests from cancelled flights in March have been cleared and that by the end of June 50% of April’s claims had been dealt with.
It now says that by the end of July the remaining April claims as well as all May and most of June’s refunds will have been processed.
These figures include passengers who have accepted travel vouchers and/or free moves onto flights that are now being operated by Ryanair in July, August and September.
Ryanair also called on screenscraping online travel agents (OTAs) to provide accurate details of their unauthorised bookings, so Ryanair can also process these refunds.
It said that a significant minority of Ryanair’s refunds are being blocked due to OTAs using fake email addresses and virtual credit cards when making bookings, which cannot be traced back to the individual consumer
Ryanair added that affected customers who have not yet received their refund should contact OTAs’ Customer Service to ensure that the travel companies are cooperating with Ryanair.
The airline’s CEO Eddie Wilson said: “We are pleased to have made such significant progress over the month of June in eliminating the backlog of cash refunds due to the Covid-19 flight cancellations. Over 90% of passengers who booked directly with Ryanair and who requested a cash refund for travel between March and June will receive their refunds before the end of July.
“ It is worrying however that a significant rump of our customers, who made bookings through unauthorised third- party screenscrapers / online travel agencies, have yet to receive their refunds because the OTAs gave Ryanair fake email addresses or virtual credit card details for these customers.
“We are highlighting this fact to the regulators in Ireland (CAR) and in the UK (CAA) as this demonstrates yet again why urgent regulation of unauthorised screenscrapers is needed to ensure that these unauthorised intermediaries provide airlines with accurate email addresses and valid payment details for customers, so we can process cash refunds to these customers promptly and efficiently.”
“We will continue to process these cash refunds as fast as we can, and would encourage any customers who haven’t yet requested a cash refund, to do so with our Customer Service team and we will process their request as quickly as possible.”