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Aviation: Passengers Denied Boarding

Volume 698: debated on Wednesday 6 February 2008

asked Her Majesty's Government:

How many passengers were denied boarding on British airlines during the last year. [HL1674]

The Government do not hold this information as airlines are not required to report cases of denied boarding. However, the Air Transport Users Council (AUC) recorded 536 complaints in 2006-07 about denied boarding. Some of these would have been about foreign airlines. These form 5 per cent of the total number of complaints handled by the AUC. The percentage of passengers who complain out of the total number who are denied boarding is not known.

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether European Commission Regulation 261/2004 applies to downgraded passengers as well as those denied boarding on British airlines; and, if so, (a) how many passengers were downgraded on British airlines during the last year; and (b) what are the compensation rights of downgraded passengers. [HL1675]

Regulation (EC) 261/2004 does also apply to downgraded passengers on British airlines. However, the Government do not receive information on how many passengers have been downgraded over the year. The Air Transport Users Council has statistics for the number of complaints made about denied boarding, but there is no separate category for downgrading.

The compensation rights are quoted in Article 10 (2) of the regulation: the air carrier will reimburse the passenger, within seven days, with a percentage of the price of the ticket, according to the distance travelled. This being:

(a) 30 percent of the price of the ticket for all flights of 1,500 kilometres or less;

(b) 50 percent of the price for all intra-Community flights of more than 1,500 kilometres and for all other flights between 1,500 and 3,500 kilometres;

(c) 75 percent of the price for all flights not falling under (a) or (b).