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Jetstar splits family even though they paid extra

April 26, 2017 Headline News 1 Comment Email Email

Passengers don’t necessarily get to sit together on a flight, even when they pay to do so.

Recent cases cited in a Fairfax report included an incident last month in which a passenger paid extra to select seats for his family of five on a Jetstar flight from Auckland to Melbourne.

On boarding, the passenger found that his family had been split up, with his three-year-old seated next to him in the second back row, while his wife, six-year-old and nine-year-old were up the front.

He said it was “pretty hard sharing an iPad across 27 rows” and that the cabin crew had been sympathetic to their plight.

Customer service told the family days later that the fine print made clear reserving seats was different from guaranteeing seats. There was no refund but the airline sent a flight voucher.

Earlier this year, a family was evicted from a Jetstar flight from Bali to Adelaide for refusing to be seated separately in different parts of the plane.

There have been a number of other examples with different airlines in various parts of the world.

A glance at “fine print” terms and conditions shows that specific seats cannot be guaranteed and passengers can be shifted “for operational, safety, legal or security reasons”.

America seems to be leading the way here. The Federal Aviation Administration reauthorisation bill, recently passed by the US Senate, orders airlines to place children under the age of 13 “in a seat adjacent to the seat of an accompanying family member over the age of 13” at no extra cost.

Edited by William Sykes

Currently there is "1 comment" on this Article:

  1. AgentGerko says:

    We all know that airlines think they’ve covered themselves for just about everything in the fine print. I understand that occasionally aircraft changes require seating changes, although its remarkable how few top FF members get moved whilst so many ordinary passengers get sprayed around. It’s also noticeable that sometimes people get shifted even when there’s no apparent aircraft change, making me wonder whether a senior FF member has been given preference. But there is absolutely no way Jetstar can get away with not giving them a refund of the seating fees. That’s Consumer Rights 101. If you pay for a product which is not supplied then you are entitled to a full refund without question. Their airfare paid for them to get a seat on the aircraft,, which they received. Their seating fee paid for reserving specific sets numbers, which they didn’t get, and that must be refunded. I think the ACCC has just about had enough of Jetstar and its antics and would love to support the passengers in this case.

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