Holiday Questions and Flight Refund Methods

Ryanair Coronavirus Cancellations – How to get refunds.

For airlines like Ryanair Coronavirus has been a game-changer. The pandemic has caused anti aviation flights to be grounded across Europe and the world, including the UK’s biggest operator Ryanair. Throughout March and April 2020 Ryanair customers have had an anxious wait to see about cancellations and refunds of their holidays. Most operators in the UK attempted to let their customers know about cancellations as soon as possible. However, for whatever reason, Ryanair seemed to be lagging behind in letting their customers know about Ryanair coronavirus cancellations.

Once customers were informed of cancellations, the actual process of getting a refund from Ryanair was problematic and heavily reported in the tabloids and press. Ryanair were obviously struggling as they were letting staff go, but they were also failing to pay customers Ryanair coronavirus refunds. Instead of offering a direct refund back to the original payment source, Ryanair chose to instead offer “holiday vouchers” to many customers. To those suffering Ryanair coronavirus cancellations, a holiday voucher to be used on a flight in the future was a very little use. Especially considering the questionable nature of foreign travel in the immediate future.

Ryanair have been quoted in the Press as expecting refunds to take up to 6 weeks. However, we’ve heard from some of our readers that they’ve achieved success in getting a coronavirus refund via using a Ryanair refund chargeback. Whilst a chargeback isn’t always an ideal way of getting a refund, it’s easier than a section 75 claim. In the current climate it might be the only way to get your money back quickly from Ryanair.

When am I entitled to a refund for a coronavirus cancellations from Ryanair, Easyjet, Wizz Air etc?

It quickly became apparent this year that some people were going to lose out on getting refunds. The guidance on which countries were safe to travel to changed the daily. Travel insurance information was patchy at best. Travellers were left in confusion as to whether their single and annual trip policies were valid for coronavirus. Everything from sporting trips and foreign weddings, to spring getaways and international business travel was halted.

The CMA Taskforce has been completely overwhelmed by customers getting in touch to complain about the unfair treatment they’ve had regarding refunds and cancellations.  The CMA (competition and markets authority) established a special covid-19 task force. It was  charged with monitoring market developments and identifying big problems facing consumers. They highlighted three particular areas of concern including weddings, holidays, and childcare providers.

From these areas the CMA identified numerous companies that were refusing to offer refunds despite customers being eligible. Where companies acknowledged that customers were due a refund they offered a variation on a direct refund. For example, by offering an alternative date or by offering a different product completely – as in the case of the Ryanair flight vouchers.

When can I claim a full refund for a coronavirus flight cancellation?

You would be entitled to a full refund if you had booked one of the following:

  1. Any domestic or international flight on a UK or EU carrier.
  2. Any ATOL protected package holiday booked either online or via your local travel agent.
  3. Any flight that would be subsequent to the initial flight. For example, any flight from the airline that you won’t use in the same booking – such as onward flights or return flights.

NOTE: It’s important to note that if you are using the chargeback method mentioned earlier you will need to give details to your bank of all flight numbers both inbound and outbound and transaction dates).

the vast majority of travel agents and Airlines will likely ask you to consider a credit note. Whilst they are able to do this you are not obliged to accept this. for some travellers this may be fine and save messing about with banks and refunds. most customers will wish to get their money back. You won’t have received the service and product you asked for and therefore entitled to that refund. If you’re struggling to get a helpful answer from your airline you can complain. Do this via the coronavirus complaint page on the government’s website.

Accepted a flight voucher? When will travel be allowed again?

The majority of countries in Europe are claiming to have passed their peak in the pandemic. No one can truthfully tell whether there will be further peaks. That being said, the following countries that are believed to be opening up travel links over the times stated below. Note that these dates are suggestions from the media and rumours. They’ll most likely change:

  • France, Portugal and Egypt are resisting giving any estimated date of return to normality. at the time of writing this article they were not encouraging holidaymakers to return to their countries. Suggestions of dates reported in some of the tabloids say that France and Portugal may not even need encourage travel until 2021. Most of the issues in France and Portugal surround their 14-day quarantine rule in place for foreign travelers.
  • Cyprus & Croatia has given indications that travel may be open as soon as June 2020
  • Dubai Greece Italy and Bulgaria suggesting July 2020
  • Turkey, Germany and Spain would potentially be September 2020. It’s worth noting the Spain is Europe’s most visited country with a huge tourism dependency.


  1. Had flights booked with Ryanair in June. Ryanair cancelled them and said “Once approved your refund request will be processed within 20 working days to the original form of payment and should show in your account within the next 5-7 working days. A confirmation email will be sent to the address provided in your booking”
    No e mail confirmation of my request and no idea of how long it would take to approve. Usual bad service from Ryanair who expect to make €1 billion profit this year
    Contacted HSBC refunded my money within a couple of hours. Great bank, great service.

    1. This is great to hear. My experience of HSBC has been mixed in terms of quality, so it’s good to hear someone getting good results from the bank.

  2. justine meyer says:

    Luckily I had no holidays booked but my son had two holidays booked and at the minute has recieved a full refund for one of them

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