Airline refunds: SC proposes 2-year credit shell for customers for flights booked during the lockdown

The proposal, if it comes through as a decision -- the SC will continue to hear the matter after three weeks -- will be as a major relief for cash-strapped airlines, which are grappling with the worst aviation crisis in history.
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Airline refunds: SC proposes 2-year credit shell for customers for flights booked during the lockdown.

In the petition requiring airlines to refund flights canceled as a result of the national lockdown imposed to curb the spread of coronavirus infection, the trial court on June 12, 2020 proposed that airlines should offer a credit shell valid for 2 years.

The proposal, if it comes through as a decision — the SC will continue to hear the matter after three weeks — will be as a major relief for cash-strapped airlines, which are grappling with the worst aviation crisis in history.

The lockdown of COVID-19 along with repeated extensions resulted in airlines opening reservations, only to cancel later. The companies also repeatedly modified their policies on how refunds should be made against those tickets.

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SpiceJet told the Supreme Court that airlines be allowed to work with the DGCA and the government to work out a solution for the issue. “Nowhere in the world are airlines issuing full refunds,” it said.

Airlines had suffered a $60 billion hit globally, SpiceJet said, while imploring the court to consider their financials before passing a judgment. “49 percent of the flying cost is fixed. There is zero revenue to the airline.”

The Solicitor General, however, maintained that it was his personal view that fares charged should be fully refunded.

(Source – CNBC)

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