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Alice H
Alice H, Solicitor/Partner
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 2847
Experience:  Partner in national law firm
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I purchased two premium economy ticket with Virgin Atlantic

Customer Question

I purchased two premium economy ticket with Virgin Atlantic to South Africa.
The service was advertised as premium with a number of enhanced characteristics.
One route was fine the other was a problem.
The seat was broken, smell from toilet, entertainment system malfunctioned.
Complained but no spare seats. Only option other than remaining was to pay
to fly upper, this cost me 2 @ £1,000, £2,000.
Complained to no avail, record of letters offered air miles, no compensation.
I now wish to proceed to small claims? Do I have a case?
Thanks

Alastair
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
Hello and welcome to Just Answer.

My name is XXXXX XXXXX I'm happy to help with your question today.

When did this happen?

Have you sent a letter asking for compensation?

Were the tickets booked in England?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Good evening Alex,


 


19th February 2012.


I have written 3 letters following on from each other


Tickets booked with Virgin Atlantic in UK, initially as economy but upgraded with air miles.


The £2,000 was spent on the runway at Heathrow before take off.

Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
Did you pay the extra money using your credit card?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes, ironically my BA Amex card

Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
OK. Here's what I suggest you do:

Contact the credit card company and complain about the poor service that you received. Under section 75 Consumer Credit Act 1974, the credit card is jointly and severally liable for any breach of contract arising from a poor service or misrepresentation. You do not have to wait until the airline has refused to pay - you have a claim against the airline AND credit card company. "Section 75" gives you protection from this poor service and the law is on your side for all purchases over £100 but less than £30,000.

I also suggest that you send a letter to the airline very clearly marked "LETTER OF CLAIM". In that letter you should set out in detail the reason for your complaint, evidence in support and the refund you are seeking. You may not get everything back but I suggest you ask for a full refund to start with. The airline might make an offer but you may also have to compromise a little on the basis that you received the benefits of upper class.

I think you have an arguable claim against the airline company. Although you had the benefit of upper class the agreement was that you would pay and receive a premium service. There is no reason why you should have to pay extra because of the airlines failure to provide proper seats etc. Their failings fall short of a number of regulations including the Sale of Goods and Services Act 1982.

I hope this helps.

Alex
Alice H, Solicitor/Partner
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 2847
Experience: Partner in national law firm
Alice H and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you Alex,


I have articulated my claim at length in writing and have spoken with a manager where I did the same verbally. I am ready to issue a summons.


Should I write to the credit card company and tell them of my intention?


In the facts required for the summons should I use the legislation details you put above?


 

Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
Yes.

I do think you should exhaust all other avenues before issuing a claim.

I appreciate you are out of pocket but contact with the Credit Card company may help to resolve the issue. If not, you can add the credit card company as a 2nd defendant to the claim. The credit card company and airline can then fight out between themselves as to who should pay.

Also under the Civil Procedure Rules the Court will expect parties to have taken reasonable steps to resolve the issue. So I suggest that you send one final letter to the airline and send a copy to the credit card company. I suggest you give them 14-days to give you a full refund.

You can issue proceedings online - www.moneyclaim.gov.uk - and I do suggest you mention the law. When you get round to issuing proceedings of you contact me then I can help you draft your particulars of claim.

Alex
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thank you will do
Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
Welcome! Please remember to rate. Alex
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Alex,


You gave me advice earlier in the week.


I am now following your advice.


I do though require clarification.


When you say the credit card company are jointly liable, is this the card I paid for the original flight with, i.e. the economy fare/upgrade or the 32,000 paid to move to upper class?


It may be one and the same but still trying to clarify.


 


Regards


 


Alastair

Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
£32,000??? Is that typo?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Sorry £2,000.
Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
Phew!

The issue as I understand it is the payment of the additional fare.

My understanding is that you are seeking a refund of the additional costs that you suffered as a result of the poor service.

Therefore, it would be advisable to make the claim against the credit card which you used to pay the additional fare.

I think it would be difficult to reclaim the original fare especially as you received the benefit of the flight in question.

So the parties to the claim should be the airline and the 2nd credit card company.

Hope this helps. Please remember to rate my answer so that I am credited for my time.

Regards

Alex
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I am not trying to get both.
I just wondered why credit company
That settled additional fare would be liable ?
Surely the fault was with the original booking ?.
Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
Hi Alastair

There is absolutely no harm in bringing both credit card companies into the discussion.

It will not cost you anything extra and you have nothing to lose.

The three organisations can then, between themselves, decide who is liable.

If you commence proceedings you my have to add both credit card companies as 2nd and 3rd defendants.

This does seem like extra work but liability can be sometimes to difficult to establish. By bringing both companies into the discussion you cover all bases.

Also saves back tracking later.

Alex
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

That makes sense, thank you.

Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
No problem!

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