Air NZ pulls refund U-turn

Airline to refund passengers on all US flights after our complaint.

20may air nz refunds hero

Air New Zealand has backed down and will refund all passengers on cancelled US flights after we called out the company for its practices.

Flight rules in the US entitle passengers travelling to or from the States to a refund if their flight is cancelled. However, Air New Zealand was telling customers transiting through the US on their way to the UK they could only get a credit.

In our view, that advice misled consumers about their rights.

Information provided to us by the US Department of Transportation said all passengers should be refunded, including those travelling via a US airport to another destination.

After we announced we’d lodged a complaint with the Commerce Commission, asking it to investigate Air New Zealand’s claims, the airline changed its stance.

The airline’s backdown means affected customers can now claim a refund.

If you were booked on an Air New Zealand flight to the US that was cancelled, contact the airline or your travel agent and request your money back.

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Sandra Y.
29 May 2020
Air NZ Refund

Woohoo, thank you so much Consumer. Air NZ today refunded our tickets to the UK. Plus they refunded the airpoints used for seat select.

matt w.
20 May 2020
Clarification

Does this mean Air Nz must refund in full or just the refundable part of the ticket? I was told (two weeks ago) I had a discount ticket so was only eligible to have the refundable portion back (a very small part of the over all ticket). Has this changed?

Consumer staff
27 May 2020
Re: Clarification

Hi Matt,

If you are traveling to US or UK via US, then they must refund in full regardless of the type of ticket. Otherwise, the terms and conditions of your ticket (also referred to as Conditions of Carriage) will set out the remedies available to you in the event that your flight has been cancelled due to the virus. In many instances this will provide for the value of the ticket to be held in credit for use within a certain period of time. In some situations, you may be entitled to a refund but this will depend on the conditions of your ticket.

Kind regards,
Frank - Consumer NZ staff

Philip R.
18 May 2020
Air New Zealand Refunds

Thanks to Consumers Institute for taking the initiative to push Air New Zealand to honour refunds on their US flights.However as I understand this is only requiring them to meet their commitments under US law.
Air New Zealand is still taking what I believe to be an indefensible stance on other flights,including charging cancellation fees on flights that never took off,as in our case, to Japan.We all know Air New Zealand is in a hole, but it is against natural justice to be charged for a service that the service provider did not deliver.I hope Consumer will push for law change that means full refunds are required to be given if a flight is cancelled by the airline even if under '"force majeure''.The airlines own insurance should be able to cover that loss.

Teresa M.
19 May 2020
Air NZ

Have been informed by our travel agent that my and friends deposit with Air New Zealand is not refundable and that we can use the said deposit for travel to same destination until June next year. We are also unable to transfer the deposit for travel within N.Z.