TAP “following EU” refund policies

By TPN/Lusa, in News · 08-11-2020 10:00:00 · 20 Comments

TAP has so far organised 85 repatriation and humanitarian flights to countries with airspace closed to commercial flights, allowing the return of around 12,000 Portuguese and residents in Portugal, the Government said while adding that the company is following EU rues regarding passenger refunds.

"TAP, in particular, despite having been forced to cancel numerous scheduled flights to and from third countries, has made every effort to, within legal and regulatory constraints, and despite the numerous practical difficulties, maintain as much as possible connection to countries with a greater presence of Portuguese and Portuguese descendants”, assured the Government.

These connections occurred "mainly for the Portuguese-speaking countries and for the United States of America", added the Portuguese executive in an answer to a question from the socialist deputies of the parliamentary committee on Foreign Affairs and Communities, to which Lusa had access.

In the document, the Government, through the Minister of Infrastructure and Housing, Pedro Nuno Santos, explained that, in addition to the regular connections, “TAP has also organised 85 repatriation and humanitarian flights to countries with airspace closed to commercial flights, the that allowed around 12,000 Portuguese and residents in Portugal to return home ".

Underlining the restrictions imposed by the covid-19 pandemic, and the air traffic impacts, "mainly from and to countries outside the European Union and the Schengen area", the Government recalled that companies must ensure compliance with the various measures imposed by the markets where they operate.

In this scenario, airlines that, like TAP, operate long-haul flights, were "the most affected" and were forced to adjust their operation, "namely through the cancellation of most scheduled flights".

On the other hand, the demand for leisure and business passengers remains "extremely low, due not only to health issues - when the World Health Organization (WHO) indicates alarming contagious rates in Europe - but also due to instability” the document emphasises.

As for the projections for the coming months, the minister's office adds that "they are quite pessimistic", referring to the forecasts of several international entities in the sector.

The Government said that, as for flights from airports in Europe, particularly France, Luxembourg, Switzerland or Germany, "TAP was compelled to cancel some flights to European countries due to the marked drop in demand".

As for the refund policy for customers harmed by cancellation or cancellation of flights, the document emphasises that the airline "fully complies with the rules laid down" in European Union regulations.

The airline has adopted automatic procedures for processing refund requests using a 'voucher' and has organised a specialised team to process refunds in the form of payment for tickets.

Therefore, before the end of August, TAP had managed to process the refund of 844,684 orders, received between 1 March and 31 July 2020.

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Tap has cancelled 4 flights WITHOUT any notification upfront and not even responded to mails and claims weeks and months after. That ridicolous complaints book doesn't help at all, portuguêse burocracy, inefficient and unnecessarily complicated. They are being sued (thanks to European aviation law) by a German company as I type this.

By Felix from Lisbon on 27-11-2020 06:20

I echo the sentiments of those above TAP are not giving refunds for cancelled flights . I have been waiting 6 months and have spent time and money and received only verbal promises but no action. Am now about to launch legal proceedings

By George Fellows from UK on 21-11-2020 11:21

TAP is NOT following EU guidelines for making refunds. I am still waiting for my refund from July. They keep telling me I must wait. They are thieves and liars and should be held accountable to all of us who have been waiting for months for our refunds! Anyone reading this is to be warned to NEVER fly TAP!

By Carmen from USA on 19-11-2020 03:45

TAP is NOT following EU rules regarding refunds and should be embarassed with their actions. They do not answer calls or emails. They "fight" it when credit card companies dispute charges. I will NEVER book a flight with them I don't care what the price is. Ryan Air is much smaller and has refunded as they should. Every other airline has refunded except TAP. They should be exposed for what they are not glorified in an article such as this. Shame on them and shame on you!

By Bonnie Wilson from USA on 16-11-2020 07:59

TAP are the worse company I have ever experienced in 50 years of travelling. They cancelled my flight from London to Lisbon without informing me and after agreeing to refund our tickets 5 months ago we are still waiting for our credit card reimbursement. They have ignored all messages since agreeing to refund and quite frankly I find your article a total insult to
honest journalism.
Regards Malcom Jones a very unhappy TAP customer

By Malcolm Jones from UK on 16-11-2020 04:13

It has been 3 months since Tap wrote on its website that my refund request was accepted and I have been calling my bank every day for 3 months but no money has ever been sent to me by TAP.
Tap does not answer on the phone, it does not answer my emails.

By Gianni Fiammengo from Other on 16-11-2020 12:07

I think your journalists need to dig deeper! TAP have been absolutely disgusting in not refunding customers whose flights called due to COVID-19. They are no way adhering to EU law and are in fact flagrantly breaking it in every way possible and yet still the Portuguese government and newspapers back them! Open your eyes to the thousand of customers still waiting for refunds including myself. My flights were in May and I’m still waiting for my refund! I’ve had every excuse under the sun from them including that they are no longer dealing direct with customers who booked their tickets through an agency. EU regulation 261/2004 clearly states that in all cases airlines shall assist without referring you to the travel agency. They really are trying to pull the wool over customers eyes! So come on Portugal News report the true facts about this shambles of an airline.

By Linda Poulastides from UK on 16-11-2020 11:58

This New is complétely fake, I’ve been waiting to get a refund for cancelled flights since MARCH!!!!!!!!!
They have also the WORST customer service ever seen!!!!!!!
THIEVES!!!!!! There’s no other way to define this “company” that is mostly of the Government of Portugal! So embarrassing that the UE does nothing against Portugal and TAP ...

By Fran from USA on 16-11-2020 01:29

TAP have not refunded my ticket since March they lie lie and send standard emails and nothing
TAP are mis managing the refunds and keeping the revenue

This article is totally not accurate

By Peter from Lisbon on 15-11-2020 10:33

TAP are totally ignoring European Union laws on refunds for cancelled flights. To get all of my money back I had to raise a dispute with my credit card company. TAP are a complete disgrace and I will certainly never use them again. With their appalling customer service they deserve to go out of business.

By Warrick Dawson from UK on 15-11-2020 04:43

This article is not correct. TAP Air Portugal cancelled two of my flights in September and has refused to issue a refund despite numerous requests. They also refuse to respond to my numerous inquiries with anything more than an automatic message telling me that they are too overwhelmed to correspond with me. Never fly TAP.

By Corinne Lockett from USA on 13-11-2020 10:33

What a bull,

They canceled my tickets in march and i finally got a part of my paid money in August. At this day they still own me $200,- and they say it is in progress but im waiting way too long and why pay partially???

By E from Other on 11-11-2020 10:38

They don’t answer emails, the phone or Facebook. They don’t give refunds. I had to do a charge back via my creditcard after 9 months of fighting for a cancelled flight

By Vicki from Other on 10-11-2020 10:33

Many thanks to Paul. My experience is that one really has to go to courts to make companies like TAP move. The ugly fact is that Portugal is about as bankrupt as TAP, which doesn't hold them back from announcing expensive projects.

By John Dough from Lisbon on 09-11-2020 06:05

After having lived in Portugal full time for 6 years I have found that if you ask these companies a difficult question they bury their heads in the sand and hope you go away.
Hope SEF and Finances see this comment.

By Peter Shepherd from Lisbon on 09-11-2020 04:43

TAP is not giving refunds as reported, they are,liars,we paid well over 360 euros for our tickets and we had to get a medical certificate to say my husband was not fit and well enough to travel because he has heart problems and diabetes and his cardiologist said that he would no way give permission for him to fly into Liverpool or anyway else in the UK..TAP.had twice previously told me there would be no refund,voucher or transfer of flights to 2021 as we were not entitled to anything.The medical certificate was our only option.we were recently onformed we were getting a refund of 154 GBP's only the cost of the flights.no refund for booked seats hold luggage or for prepaid insurance against cancellation of flights due to ill health!plus they charged us 35GBP"s each for dealing with our request for a refund. Gyess what we will never ever use TAP again they are a fraudulent Company. Where as Transavia could not do enough to help us change our flights gave us 4 free changes and rang me to tell me they had used one to book the earliest flights they could to the end of March 2021, changing our flights from 2020 to 2021,and then called me again to move the flights to exactly the same day and time fligjts for our Granddaughters wedding in July 2021.amazing Company would recommend anyone to use them,

By Margaret Stephenson from Beiras on 09-11-2020 04:01

I cannot believe that even the government is backing TAP's lies regarding ticket tefunds!! I'm still waiting for a refund from a flight in APRIL, I've got hundreds of contacts with TAP but no money has been paid although my refund was "processed" by TAP in June! We're in November! I've never met such a level of incompetence before and thousands of other customers are in the same situation! Shame on TAP and shame on the government covering up for them!!

By Isabella Stefania Chimienti from Other on 09-11-2020 04:25

Tap is not helping and has not fulfilled its promise to replace covid with vouchers. I have two flights and Tap is arrogant with no customer service.

By Riccardo Gaudino from USA on 08-11-2020 07:23

As I understand it EU rules require refund within 7 days TAP cancelled my long haul business class flight to San Diego which I paid for in January 2020 Despite claiming refund of €2800 7 June 2020 and a number of phone calls to TAP nobody can tell me when the refund will be made. On other TAP flights I have received vouchers. These I have used partially on other TAP flights. Why can TAP not advise when repayment will be made. I also wonder if the 844k refunds how many are vouchers. How much in the period to 31 July remains like mine unpat

By Iain Stewart from Lisbon on 08-11-2020 04:33

TAP absolutely IS NOT following EU rules regarding refunds.

We had four flights to Brazil booked, total 4922 EUR. In June they were cancelled and TAP must refund within 7 days. On the phone, they told us "due to circumstances" it would take 90 days. After 90 days, nothing. So I opened a complaint in the Livro de Reclamacoes, which they have to respond to within 15 days. They totally ignored it, so after 40 further days I contacted ANAC, the Portuguese Civil Aviation Authority, that is supposed to investigate complaints and if necessary issue sanctions. After a few days, I received a brush-off email basically saying they couldn't do anything. So I contacted the EU Justice Commissioner Mr Didier Reynders.

Only when his office replied asking for more details, and I CCed TAP and ANAC on my mail to him with the info did things start to move and I finally got the refund.

There are thousands of other people who have not received refunds for MONTHS. Just look at TAP's twitter feed, and all the angry people around the world.

This is trashing Portugal's reputation, the damage the Portuguese government is doing (they own 72% of TAP, so it is down to them) to its image will have long term consequences for tourism.

It is simply a lie for TAP to say they are following EU rules. The rules say 7 days, our refunds took 5 months, and only then when we'd exhausted all the domestic complaints routes, and escalated to the EU.

By Paul from Lisbon on 08-11-2020 12:18
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