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Published: Wed 17 Jan 2018 at 10:06

Updated: Wed 23 Jan 2019 at 20:42

Regulatory Affairs

You may have seen that the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA)’s regulator, has recently been publicly critical of for not signing up to the Aviation ADR scheme. Under ADR, some categories of “deadlocked” complaints can be referred to an adjudicator for resolution. considers that the CAA’s criticism is unjustified and unfair for the following reasons:

  • As a matter of law, participation in ADR is entirely voluntary, and this is recognised and accepted by the CAA. If entering into a scheme is optional, it is wrong for someone to be criticised for not entering into it.
  • has not ignored the availability of ADR but it has instead investigated the pros and cons of ADR, including meeting with CEDR, the leading provider of the ADR adjudication services, on more than one occasion. It was only after these evaluations that we decided that ADR is not in our customer’s interests or the interests of We are not against ADR as such – Jet2holidays is a member of the Association of British Travel Agents’ very effective ADR scheme and is satisfied with the way in which that operates. But having carefully looked at ADR for passenger flight disputes, many of which involve complex factual, technical, operational issues and involved legal interpretation of EU regulations and decisions of the European Court of Justice, we do not think it is appropriate.
  • It is true that some other airlines have decided to sign up to ADR. Not all airlines are the same, and many are not like and do not have industry-leading processes for dealing with complaints and claims for compensation. Our customer service has been recognised in the many prestigious consumer awards we have received, some of which are listed below. Some other airlines may not have carried out the careful evaluation which we have, so did not understand the problems with ADR before signing up. But in any case, the mere fact that some airlines have signed up to an optional scheme should not be a basis for criticising an airline which considers it is not right to sign up.
  •’s customers are able to raise complaints and claims with us and can expect a prompt response. For instance, we pay out valid EC261 flight delay compensation claims with industry-leading speed: valid claims are paid out on average within 14 days. If a customer is not satisfied, the CAA’s “PACT” team is available, and a customer can also pursue a claim in court if necessary. The CAA says its reason for pushing ADR is that PACT decisions are not binding on airlines. However, the number of complaints which get referred to PACT is tiny. We had just 30 referrals to PACT in the last 6 months of last year: this represents about 0.001% or one in one hundred thousand of our customers, and on all of those referrals the CAA agreed with our assessment of the claims. This shows that there would be few if any valid claims to refer to ADR and the binding nature of ADR has no practical relevance.
  • Our analysis shows that ADR is not a good process for resolving disputed claims for EC261 compensation, which makes up around 90% of the claims which other airlines’ customers refer to ADR. This is in part because such claims involve the assessment of technical, operational and factual issues, as well as the interpretation of law, regulations and conventions, which are better suited to the expertise of the courts which can apply legal precedents set right across the EU. The ADR adjudicators who deal with the claims are not judges and sometimes are not even lawyers; they are allocated only a limited time in which to review the facts and issues arising from a claim; and are not best placed to weigh evidence and to interpret the law. Nor are we satisfied that the CAA oversees the ADR providers adequately to ensure consistent and fair results for customers and for airlines.
  • We are also concerned that the minimal fee for starting ADR encourages complaints which are not valid. An airline is then put to great cost dealing with the ADR claim. Worse still, a customer can lose the ADR but still go to the county court and claim again on a claim which has already been shown to be unmeritorious, putting the airline to yet further expense.
  • We will keep ADR under review, but as matters stand we do not think it would serve our customers’ interests or the interests of

  • Some of the recent awards won by 

  • was conferred prestigious “Recommended Provider” status in the annual Which? Airline Survey for two consecutive years (December 2016 and 2017)
  • was named “Best Short Haul Airline” in the Travel Weekly Globe Awards 2018 for the fifth time in seven years
  • In July 2017, the benchmark UK Customer Satisfaction Index (UKCSI), produced bi-annually by the Institute of Customer Service, named 29th out of almost 250 companies for customer service. This makes the highest ranked airline for customer satisfaction in the study.
  • was named “Best Airline – UK and Best Low-Cost Airline – Europe” in the inaugural TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choiceawards for airlines.
  • Top Seller for Jet2holidays from Birmingham Airport - Midcounties Co-operative Travel- Walsall
  • was voted “UK’s Most Loved Airline” by users of Skytrax,
  • was named “Airline of the Year” at the Glasgow Airport Awards (2016)
  • was named “Best Holiday Airline” at the Scottish Passenger Agents Association Awards (2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 & 2017),
  • was named “Best Airline” at the Group Leisure Awards (2012, 2013, 2014, 2016).
  • In 2017, was the only UK airline to be awarded 5-Stars for On-Time Performance by OAG, the world’s leading air travel intelligence company.
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