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Airlines should be fined for refund delays, MPs say - Perthshire Chamber of Commerce

Airlines should be fined for refund delays, MPs say

The UK's aviation watchdog should have stronger powers to protect passengers hit by the kind of disruption caused by the pandemic, MPs have recommended.

The sector was hit hard by efforts to tackle the virus, including quarantine, testing regimes and travel bans.

The Civil Aviation Authority should have "more teeth" to be able to fine airlines not giving refunds, a Commons Transport Committee report said.

It also called for ministers to publish an aviation recovery plan by June.

Aviation was one of the industries most affected by measures put in place to stop the spread of coronavirus.

International travel was banned or heavily restricted in the early months of 2020 after the virus began to spread around the globe, and many customers had flights and holidays cancelled.

When travel could resume, passengers were still subject to measures such as Covid testing, quarantine and passenger locator forms.

The MPs welcomed ministers' pledges to only apply travel restrictions in "extreme circumstances" in future, and said the government "must compensate the industry for the economic loss suffered" if measures impacting the sector were reimposed.

And plans should be established to ensure swift Covid testing is put in place if required by other countries, the MPs said.

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