In January 2015 the Aircraft Noise Ombudsman (ANO) and the Ministry of Aviation and Defence signed a Memorandum of Understanding amending the Charter of the ANOs to expand their role and provide an independent complaint and review mechanism for the Ministry of Defence. ANO’s role is to conduct an independent administrative review of Air service of Australia’s management of aircraft noise and related activities. It also conducts independent administrative reviews of the Aviation Authority and noise management.
If you have a complaint about aircraft noise, you can submit it to Air services Australia’s Noise Complaint Information Service. All consumer complaints relating to airlines can be dealt with via the contact information of the Aviation Consumer Protection Departments. All the issues mentioned above, from refunds, delays, and cancellations of baggage to discriminatory treatment of airline staff, are considered consumer matters. You can refer to airline ombudsman Australia for further information.
In fact, if the airline doesn’t offer you a refund and you don’t ask for one, be prepared to tell your airline about the terms and conditions of carriage. Full-service airlines offer cash refunds if you cancel a flight.
The ACCC says it has received hundreds of complaints from people in this situation and many Qantas customer service complaints say that people have not been told they can get a refund. If you choose to receive a refund from your airline, you are entitled to cash refund, but you must contact the airline directly to request a refund.
Contact your travel insurer to find out if your policy will cover refunds in the event of an airline or online travel agent going bust. If you are abroad, you may need to book an alternative flight home with another airline. If no flight options are available, contact the nearest embassy to find out about repatriation. Major Australian airlines offer vouchers without rebooking conditions.
Meanwhile, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has intervened in a long-running dispute between regional Express and Qantas and warned it could take enforcement actions against airlines deemed anti-competitive. In their quarterly report on domestic airline competition, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission said it was investigating Rex’s complaint against Qantas and Virgin Australia.
The 2020 Air Travel Consumer Report from the Department of Transportation of the US shows that national airlines operated 47.2 million flights, the lowest number recorded and 40% below the 2019 levels. United Airlines cancelled all flights, which combined with pandemic restrictions made Virgin Australia’s travel impossible. There are currently only two tickets available.
The rate of flight cancellations increased by 6% at the peak of the pandemic wave but has returned to normal over the years. Over time, performance has improved by 53% and the number of mishandled bags by 30%. Your complaints sound true, but it is worth pointing out that pretty much every airline in the world has a number of complaints against them.
Flyers such as Qantas can contact Airline Customer Advocate Service to help resolve complaints from passengers on the airlines. The amount of compensation you receive depends on the flight distance and whether the airline offers you transport. The airlines will try to find a solution so that you can continue flying with them in the future.
ACL’s Consumer Guarantee rules give a right to a refund in certain circumstances, such as when an airline cancels a flight or has fewer bookings. However, the ACCC points out that there is unlikely to be a sufficient condition of carriage on the part of the airline to clarify the airline’s position on the application of the consumer guarantee under ACL. Claiming that consumers are not entitled to a refund may indeed be in breach of ACL by giving consumers the impression that they don’t have a right to a refund when the airline’s refund rights have not actually been restricted, altered, or cancelled.
Every month, the ministry publishes the Air Travel Consumer Report, which includes the number and nature of complaints received by airlines, as well as statistics about delays, cancellations, bumps, and other inconveniences. When airline complaints relate to discrimination, disability or sexual misconduct, the process is more involved. When the report is published, you can compare airline customer satisfaction, identify problems in the industry as a whole and prepare to wait for the next time you take flight to the skies.