A Victory For Travellers!

The UK government have made a decision to put an end to the travel companies charging credit and debit card fees. On the 23rd of December 2011 this decision was made. By the end of 2012 legislation should be introduced to ban these ridiculous fees.

We successfully played a part in this momentous victory and we have you to thank.  Thanks for all you who took part in supporting our campaign and supported the Which? (the Independent Consumer Magazine) campaign "Stop rip off Charges" which successfully acquired over 50,000 signatures.

This was our campaign:

Fight Credit Card Charges!

Most airlines have found an extra source of revenue from a totally unjustifiable extra charge added when paying for your flight through standard credit & debit cards.

The charges are banned in France, Germany, Italy, Sweden and Portugal, while they are capped in Spain and Denmark.In May 2010 Germany’s highest court banned Ryanair from the practice of charging German customers to pay using their credit card, as reported in the following article by Ben Knight from Deutsche Welle on 22 May 2010.

On the 1st of August 2010 Sweden followed suit, also banning charges on credit card payments. Airlines such as Ryanair & Norwegian still manage to get around this by having head offices & payments based outside of Sweden.

It is quite clear that these practices are unfair and unjust and that unscrupulous airlines seek any excuse or measure to keep this stealth revenue going.

ATAB supports Which? - the Independent Consumer Magazine's campaign to:

Stop 'rip off' charges

Which? has issued a surcharge super complaint to the Office of Fair Trading over the fees retailers charge consumers for paying by credit or debit card. Low cost airlines are among the worst offenders. We want upfront costs, fair charges and for retailers to absorb the cost of the fee to process a debit card payment. Add your name to our pledge. Please ask your friends and family to do the same. The more support we have, the stronger our case.

Which? is arguing that the cost of processing a debit card payment is no more than 20p per transaction. For credit cards, it estimates the cost to be no more than 2% of the transaction. The consumer group claims that the surcharges – levied at the point of payment – are often a fixed amount far in excess of the retailers’ costs and can increase owing to the number of people purchasing tickets.

It also claims that low-cost airlines charge a fee per passenger, per leg of the journey, even though there is only one payment to process.

“There is simply no justification for excessive card charges. Paying by card should cost the consumer the same amount that it costs the retailer,” said Which? chief executive Peter Vicary-Smith. Which? said low-cost airlines were the worst offenders, with cinemas, hotels and even some local authorities starting to copy them.


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