LONDON – Low-cost carrier Wizz Air is being investigated by the Hungarian Government for possible breaches of consumer protection laws.
The investigation has been initiated following reports that the airline didn’t provide information or assistance for customers affected by delays or cancellations.
Some other aspects of the complaints entail the failure to provide accommodation and rebook passengers, not responding to consumer complaints within 30 days, and not operating a paid customer service telephone line.
The Hungarian Government has been known to be strict regarding such violations, especially after fining Irish low-cost carrier Ryanair 750,000 EUR after the company raised ticket prices to cope with a new aviation tax.
AviationSource has approached Wizz Air for a comment on this issue. At the time of publication, they haven’t produced a statement.
Not A Great Week for Wizz Air…
Wizz Air has not had a great seven days. First off, the airline had to announce the suspension of flights into Cardiff Airport due to a “difficult economic environment”.
Airline officials say the services termination decision was difficult but made as soon as possible to minimize last-minute cancellations and provide customers with easier rebooking options.
Passengers with bookings affected by this change will be notified by email and may choose to receive a 120% of the original price on airline credit, a 100% cash refund, or similar flights for the next summer from Cardiff or this year via London Gatwick or London. Luton.
Due to the suspension of base operations over the winter months, all staff based in Cardiff will have the option of redeploying to other UK airports over the winter. Wizz Air plans to resume operations from Cardiff next spring and, as part of its long-term commitment to the airport, has already launched its summer 2023 flight schedule.
Marion Geoffroy, Managing Director of Wizz Air UK, said: “We are extremely disappointed to have to suspend several routes from Cardiff Airport for the winter season. Although these routes have proven popular during the summer season, it will not be commercially viable to continue operating them during the coming winter due to the difficult macroeconomic environment. That leaves us with no choice but to suspend these routes until next spring.
Then, at its Abu Dhabi subsidiary, the carrier had to backtrack on its plans to restart services in Russia following backlash incited by the Ukraine Crisis.
The airline said the following in a statement, blaming “supply chain limitations”:
“Wizz Air Abu Dhabi, the ultra-low fare national airline of the UAE, regrets to inform its customers that the airline has had to defer the start date of its flight operations from Abu Dhabi to Moscow until further notice due to industry supply chain limitations”.
It remains clear that things don’t seem to be going in the right direction on the PR front for Wizz Air. This is the third element of bad news they have had in a week, so recovery will need to take place.
Ultimately, it’s going to be interesting to see what the findings from the Hungarian Government will be, and if Wizz Air is found to be guilty, what sort of fine will be imposed.
All we can do in the meantime is sit back and wait to see what happens.