Five low-cost airlines condemned by the Balearic regional government for limiting hand luggage

Palma de Mallorca Airport

easyJet, Eurowings and Volotea join the files already opened by the Directorate General for Consumer Affairs against Ryanair and Vueling – The proposed fines exceed 20,000 euros for each company, considering that their faults are serious.

Airlines easyJet, Eurowings and Volotea have joined Ryanair and Vueling after being filed by the Balearic government for breaches deemed serious, and each received a proposed fine of more than 20,000 euros. The reason lies in the consideration by the Directorate General for Consumer Affairs that these companies apply abusive clauses, by limiting the hand luggage that their passengers can take into the cabin or by requiring the payment of higher fares to be able to take it with them. The aforementioned regional director, Félix Alonso, points out that these files follow the complaint initially lodged by the consumer association Facua against Ryanair, which gave way to a campaign to track airline websites to detect similar cases.

The General Director of Consumer Affairs defends the implementation of these controls and the proposals for sanctions for serious misconduct, recalling the dependence that the citizens of the Balearic Islands have on air transport due to their insularity, it is why he insists that these companies must be particularly scrupulous in complying with regulations. In this sense, he recalls that the legislation allows passengers to carry their hand luggage in the cabin, without having to pay additional amounts for it.

Given that in the case of airlines there are thousands of consumers in the archipelago who are affected by this type of behavior, added to their repetition, which implies that the infringement supposes a high economic benefit for these companies , these acts constitute serious misconduct. Thus, the penalty proposed for easyJet and Eurowings amounts to 21,500 euros in each case, and that fixed for Volotea amounts to 24,000 euros. This last amount is the one that was also established in the files previously opened by Consumption to Vueling and Ryanair.

As indicated, it is common for these companies to set limits on the entry of these packages with the passenger depending on whether a base fare or a higher fare is paid, when Spanish legislation determines that it cannot be prohibited as long that the maximum size of hand luggage is not exceeded.

It must be remembered that this is not the only reason why the Balearic Consumer Department has opened a file against different airlines. A few months ago, he did the same against those who did not incorporate a free telephone number for customer service within the required period, also following complaints filed by Facua.

No option to claim

The proof of this is that to the file with a proposed fine of 24,000 euros that Consumer has opened in recent days against Vueling for abusive clauses in terms of luggage, it has now added another against this same company for two other infringements, one qualified as minor and another as serious, in which a fine of 28,500 euros is envisaged, which would be added to the previous one.

This new file arose from the complaint of a consumer, who was denied boarding for not having the registration certificate, and who, when trying to claim through the website of this company, found that it was not possible.

Once this website was reviewed by the aforementioned government-dependent service, it was found that there was no option to collect complaints, as required by current legislation, but also the information necessary did not appear so that customers know that in case of disagreement with the airline, they have the right to external mediation, which is also mandatory.

It should be recalled that Vueling was also one of the airlines on which a file had been opened for not having offered a free telephone within the required period, as indicated above.

Source: Mallorca newspaper

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