Easyjet refund

Breaking news is that we’ve been given a refund for Hal’s tickets to Mallorca. A satisfying end to the saga. I’ll try and find out more about how they reached the decision after battling so vehemently against it.


And more easyjet…

Another response  from easyjet. Basically – what we said last time, but more legal sounding. Yawn. Issue still remains – we paid for a seat for our two year old, as per their regulations, but that seat was many rows away, so we couldn’t use it. Do I really have to go to the broadsheet consumer pages to get some basic common sense out of these people?


Thank you for contacting us.

I was really disappointed to learn about your experience on the flight from London Gatwick to Palma de Mallorca and then at Palma de Mallorca Airport. I can appreciate your frustration.

Allow me to respond to the points you have raised one after another.

1. Please be advised, that since we do not allocate seats on the plane and we have a free seating policy, it is not obliged to have a child sat next to a parent. Of course it is much more convenient and safe (from the child’s point of you), however if there was no seat next to you but there was a seat farther, we did provide you with the service you have purchased.

2. From our Carrier’s Regulations and Terms and Conditions you are aware that we have a free seating policy, therefore it may happen that all the passengers from the booking may not sit together.

3. I can confirm that you were not prevented from using the purchased seat. As I understand you have chosen to fly with your child on your laps instead of letting the child seating away from you. Please be advised , that since you have paid for the seat, it was waiting to be used by your child. Please also see point 1. and 2. where I explain that we have a free seating policy, so a seat was booked for your child but due to boarding the plane not in the first group, you were not sitting together.

4. I was sorry to learn about your impression on our service. I can assure you that we value all comments regarding our service and yours is acknowledged.

Allow me to provide you with our Customer Service telephone number 0871 244 2366 (calls cost 10p per minute; calls from mobiles and other networks may cost more) and also the international line: 0044 870 6 000 000 (calls made to this number will be charged at the prevailing overseas call rate). If you require to talk about this issue to one of our agents, please fell free to call us.

I deeply regret to inform you that we will not be able to offer you a refund for the seat purchased for your child.

I do hope I have been able to answer your question fully, if I have not, please click here and we will be more than happy to assist you further.

Yours sincerely,

Customer Experience Champion

More easyjet

So I made my case to Easyjet and have heard back. As many people have suggested, their response was pretty poor. Here it is:


Dear Mr  Bailey,

Thank you for contacting us.

I was concerned to read about problems you have experienced while travelling with easyJet lately. I can appreciate inconvenience caused by the fact that you and your family were not able to sit together during the flight.

Please note that when you are booking flight with easyJet, we do not allocate seats, therefore it is not possible to guarantee that all passengers from certain booking will be seated next to each other. From your comments I have noted that the flight attendant did her best to arrange 3 seats for you, however it is not possible to force any of the passengers to change their seats with somebody else.

As a lot of passengers are anxious about sitting together, we have decided to introduce the Speedy Boarding service. This service provides passengers with an option of being preboarded and in fact they have the bast selection of seats on the aircraft.

It is with regret that I need to advise you that easyJet is a non refundable airline. As you could not use the third seat due to the fact that simply there were not 3 or 2 seats available next to each other, no refund is payable.

I do hope I have been able to answer your question fully, if I have not, please click here and we will be more than happy to assist you further.

Yours sincerely,

Magdalena Przybyla
Customer Experience Champion


Now a few things are totally unacceptable about this.

  1. I was obliged to buy a seat for my two year old son, due to aviation rules. To then suggest that he could sit on his own is entirely unacceptable.  He is a minor and cannot be unaccompanied on a flight. If you buy a ticket for a minor, he must be sat next to a parent or guardian. This isn’t about service – this is about safety.
  2. At no point during the booking was I told to buy Speedy Boarding to avoid my son being unaccompanied. I am not “anxious about sitting together” – it is a physical fact that my son, unaccompanied on that flight, would have been a disaster for all involved. Also we were advised at check in that we would have priority boarding as we had a child. What we weren’t told is that we would be preceded by Speedy Boarders. Therefore to state that I should have therefore booked Speedy Boarding, after the fact, is unacceptable.
  3. “easyJet is a non refundable airline” – a pretty ridiculous statement. I paid for a seat which I was prevented from using. I therefore entered a contract in good faith, in accordance with the company’s policy on children having their own seat, but was prevented from taking benefit of that purchase by the company’s policy of insisting I sit separately from my 2 year old son. Amazingly they seem to regard my need for him to have a seat over my need to be sitting next to him. The basis of being a non-refundable airline in this case id flawed.
  4. For a “Customer Experience Champion” this does nothing to chamption my customer experience, which was very poor. So don’t suggest there’s any championing going on, unless you’re going to actually champion me.

So where does this leave me. Well I went back to their fantastically buried and hard to use customer feedback interface and managed to find a “ring me back” facility which then refused to accept my home number with international prefix (as instructed). I’m not into conspiracies but its hard to feel Easyjet isn’t actively trying to make me give up. Because of personal annoyance, a sense of justice and professioanl curiosity I will not.

Less than easy jet

Last week I travelled to Mallorca with my wife and son. We paid easyjet a not insignificant sum, but blimey did they feel like we were paying in blood!

1. We arrived early to be rewarded with an hour long queue. People arriving late were rewarded by being whisked to the front. That made everyone in the queue feel like valued customers.

2. We paid for three seats, but when we got on board we discovered there were only three separate seats for us. There policy of having unallocated seating often backfires apparently. And is it really any faster. We delayed them 10 mins trying to get seated. Eventually my wife sat three rows ahead with my son on her lap. Breaking airlIne regulations in the process and causing no little discomfort.

3. On the return leg we arrived early to avoid a repeat failure. We queued at an unspecified easyjet check in desk, and when we reached the front were told we had 10 mins to wait. And no, we couldn’t wait to the side, we had to re-queue. So we did, and 25 mins later we reached the front only to be told by the same guy that he was going on his break and would be replaced shortly. He said to wait where we were. A queue of people built up so after 20 mins we asked another easyjet employee when someone would be coming and they said our desk was now closed and we should join one of the, now considerably longer, queues.

My wife has the patience of a saint but she put her foot down. After 5 mins arguing we were taken to the front of the queue and checked in. Great for us but rubbish for everyone else waiting, who felt we were getting preferential treatment.

All these failures were avoidable but stemmed from a service designed around company targets and not experience targets – fast boardings to maximise airline use. Poorly resourced desks to minimise overheads. Overall neglect that this experience has anything to do with a pleasurable leisure activity.

Is it a case of you get what you pay for? Am I asking for it from the first week of the shool holidays? Do we British ask for poor service because we so blithely accept it? All those arguments are unacceptable excuses when you talk about a modern, profitable company like easyjet. Unfortunately I will only find out what they really believe from their complaints department.