There seemed to be a real glut of cancelled flights and holidays last year and no real attempt at compensation or even apologies from the flight carriers responsible, so it’s refreshing to hear about the story of Russel Quirk, who decided to send the bailiffs over to Wizz Air to collect his refund and actually ended up being given it.
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Quirk had booked flights to Faro in Portugal for himself and his three daughters in January last year, but on the day of their holiday they were left gutted after they received a text message saying their flights were cancelled. They were able to get out there the day after, but the extra flights and associated expenses meant that Quirk was £4500 out of pocket, so naturally upon his return to England he set about trying to get Wizz Air to reimburse him.
Of course, that was a lot easier said than done. He waited two months for the flight costs to be returned and then was repeatedly ignored about his claims for further ‘consequential losses’, eventually becoming so ticked off by it all that he applied for a county court judgment that was granted and meant that bailiffs eventually turned up at Wizz Air’s support desk in Luton and were forced to pay him the money he owed them.
Here’s what Quirk had to say about it all:
There was no explanation, no alternative offered and no apology.
I had to wake my three daughters and tell them we weren’t going on holiday – they were very upset.
Wizz Air repeatedly ignored my claim for “consequential losses” – the £4,500 extra I had spent.
I took my case to the county court but said Wizz Air ignored the judgement made against the company, so bailiffs were sent in to the Wizz Air desk at Luton Airport.
Their option was to hand over the money or the bailiffs would take it in goods – it might have been chairs, tables, computers or an aircraft.
It would have been nice to have a plane, but I had to make do with receiving the money that they owed me.
Increasingly businesses are thinking they can treat customers like dirt and I’m determined to eradicate that.
My message is, where big companies stonewall you, if you persevere you can get what is owed to you.
Well, I might usually accuse Quirk of being an annoying busybody, but I’m actually pretty impressed that he took on a notoriously useless company like Wizz Air and ended up winning, even if it does seem like a bit of effort and risk, as he did originally have to pay £180 court costs and £60 bailiffs fees. These were however included in his eventual payout from Wizz Air, so it’s a classic case of no risk, no reward really.
I guess the morale of the story is that if you believe in something and put the effort in, then you should get what’s coming to you. Make it happen.
For more of the same, check out this guy who bought a really bad jeep but couldn’t get a refund on it so decided to destroy it for a music video. Weird set of events, but entertaining nonetheless.