Flair Airlines blames 'glitch' but BC man sues and wins | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

Would you like to subscribe to our newsletter?

Current Conditions Light Rainshower  16.5°C

Vernon News

Flair Airlines blames 'glitch' but BC man sues and wins

Image Credit: SUBMITTED / Flair Airlines

A BC man has won in the small claims court after Flair Airlines denied it owed the passenger full compensation and tried to blame the situation on a technical "glitch."

According to a May 19 BC Civil Resolution Tribunal decision, Muhammad Adil Younus booked a ticket to an unnamed destination with Flair Airlines in July 2022.

He checked in and was told there was a "glitch" in the system which meant the airline couldn't assign him a seat. However, when he tried to get on the flight he was denied boarding.

According to the decision, under Canada's Air Passenger Protection Regulations passengers who can't get on flights because they've been overbooked are owed $2,400 if the delay is more than nine hours.

However, the budget airline refused to pay up the full amount and instead offered Younus $934 in compensation.

READ MORE: 'Unreasonable and excessive:' BC couple lose legal fight with Westjet over lost baggage claim

He refused and took them to the online small claims court arguing for full compensation because the airline has clearly overbooked the flight.

Flair Airlines doesn't have a great track record with customer satisfaction and received more complaints last year than any other airline.

According to the Canadian Transportation Agency, the airline received 21 complaints per every 100 flights operated in the first quarter of 2023. In comparison, Air Transat received the least complaints getting four in the first three months of this year.

Flair has been taken to the BC Civil Resolution eight times this year, and in an unusual move, it hasn't contested five of those cases, allowing the customer to win by default.

READ MORE: Air Canada blames COVID, but BC couple win legal fight over delay

In the current decision, Flair denied it oversold the flight and it was overbooked.

Instead, the airline blamed a technical "glitch" and said Younus should not have been sent a booking notification.

The budget airline says it would only owe $2,400 compensation if the flight was overbooked, which it claims it wasn't.

However, the Tribunal didn't buy its argument.

"The difficulty for Flair is that it did book Mr. Younus on (the) flight," the Tribunal ruled. "Yet, I find Flair does not adequately explain why Mr. Younus could not board the flight if it was not overbooked."

The Tribunal says there is no exemption in the Air Passenger Protection Regulations for overbooking due to "glitches."

The Tribunal says Flair failed to provide evidence of whether the flight was overbooked or not so it drew an "adverse inference" and found the flight was overbooked and denied Younus boarding because of that.

READ MORE: Flair Airlines loses legal case after delayed flights

Ultimately, the Tribunal ruled Flair pay $2,400 compensation plus $59 in interest.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Ben Bulmer or call (250) 309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

We welcome your comments and opinions on our stories but play nice. We won't censor or delete comments unless they contain off-topic statements or links, unnecessary vulgarity, false facts, spam or obviously fake profiles. If you have any concerns about what you see in comments, email the editor in the link above. 

News from © iNFOnews, 2023

  • Popular kamloops News
View Site in: Desktop | Mobile