Huge blunder by Qantas leads to year-long battle with passenger

Qantas locked in year-long battle with passenger over $356 refund: Airline finally pays back customer after more than 12 months of waiting

  • Customer said Qantas treated her like ‘absolute dirt’ 
  • Nichola Tranter sad the airline had ‘stolen money’ 

Qantas took more than a year to refund a customer $356 after the airline announced it was on track to make a $2.5billion profit for the financial year

Nichola Tranter used frequent flyer points and around $2,500 on top of that for return trips from Melbourne to Los Angeles in May 2022. 

But three months later, a $356 charge from Qantas showed up on her credit card bill, despite having already fully paid the cost of the flights.

Ms Tranter said she was charged twice for the tax part of her booking and accused the airline of treating her like ‘absolute dirt’ as she tried to get her money back.

‘Qantas, a multi-billion dollar business, has stolen money from hardworking everyday Australians during a cost-of-living crisis. It’s just awful,’ she told Yahoo News.

Qantas is on track to make a profit of around $2.5billion this financial year, but it left Nichola Tranter (pictured) waiting more than 12 months to refund $356 owed to her

The frustrated flyer said the airline admitted it made a mistake but she was ‘brushed off’ on the numerous calls she made trying to get her money back.

The Melbourne woman said she was told three times that a refund had been paid and to contact her bank – she did, and it hadn’t.

She claimed she was also told the national carrier had not made the charge in the first place, though it was clearly written on her credit card bill on August 2, 2022.

‘Many Australians are struggling to make ends meet right now, and would not be able to afford $356 being taken without any notice, let alone going without that money for nearly a year,’ she said.

Daily Mail Australia contacted Qantas, which admitted that Ms Tranter was accidentally double charged $356.

The airline said the money was refunded on August 15, and Qantas is following up with her to make sure she got the money back.

‘We sincerely apologise to Ms Tranter for the delay and have contacted her to refund the incorrect charge,’ a spokesperson said.

But Ms Tranter said it was ‘ridiculous’ that it took this long and she may not fly with Qantas again as customers’ needs are  not being met. 

‘You can’t run a successful massive business like this and treat your customers like absolute dirt because it’s just ridiculous,’ she said.

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce, who is leaving the post in November, is on a base salary of $2.2million, but could get up to $4.3million in bonus payments this year. 

Qantas expects there to be no let-up in post-Covid travel demand as it reports record profits on the back of high fares and a booming domestic market.

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce (pictured), who is leaving the post in November, is on a base salary of $2.2million, but could get up to $4.3million in bonus payments this year

Bookings indicate strong travel demand continuing, with Qantas’ revenue running at 118 per cent of pre-pandemic levels for domestic flights and 123 per cent for international journeys. 

It said by the end of 2023 it would be operating slightly more domestic flights than it did before the pandemic, led by a significant increase in its key routes between Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

The airline’s international capacity is at 84 per cent of pre-Covid levels and will reach 100 per cent by March 2024. 

In May, Qantas said it expected to make a 2022/23 underlying profit before tax of between $2.425 billion and $2.475 billion, significantly outstripping previous records but broadly in line with guidance and consensus expectations. 

Daily Mail Australia has contacted Ms Tranter seeking further comment.  

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