Award Banner
Award Banner

Aussie regulator takes Qantas to court for selling cancelled flights' tickets

Aussie regulator takes Qantas to court for selling cancelled flights' tickets
Qantas aircraft are seen on the tarmac at Melbourne International Airport in Melbourne, Australia, Nov 6, 2018.
PHOTO: Reuters file

Australia's competition regulator said on Thursday (Aug 30) it had taken Qantas Airways to court, alleging the flagship carrier in mid-2022 kept selling tickets for more than 8,000 cancelled flights for an average of two weeks.

Also, Qantas did not notify existing ticketholders that their flights had been cancelled for an average of 18 days for more than 10,000 flights scheduled during the period, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) alleged in a statement.

"We have commenced these proceedings alleging that Qantas continued selling tickets for thousands of cancelled flights, likely affecting the travel plans of tens of thousands of people," ACCC Chair Gina Cass-Gottlieb said.

Airlines may cancel flights in the short term due to a range of unforeseeable reasons including bad weather, aircraft defects and delays from previous flights, the regulator said, adding that cancellations also happen due to a slew of factors within an airline's control.

"However, this case does not involve any alleged breach in relation to the actual cancellation of flights, but rather relates to Qantas' conduct after it had cancelled the flights."

ACCC said it would pursue orders including penalties, injunctions, declarations, and costs against the airline for its conduct after flight cancellations.

Qantas will examine the details of ACCC's allegations and respond to them in court, the carrier said in an emailed response to Reuters. It added that the period examined by ACCC between May and July was a time of "unprecedented upheaval for entire airline industry."

The combined market share of Qantas Group, which includes its wholly-owned low-cost airline Jetstar, was a whopping 60.8 per cent in April 2023, carrying nearly a quarter of all domestic passengers in Australia.

ALSO READ: Airlines with most flight delays and cancellations, according to Singaporean travellers

This website is best viewed using the latest versions of web browsers.