The apex court on October 1 gave an approval to the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA's) scheme of refunding ticket fares against flights that were cancelled due to coronavirus led curbs. Also at the same time the court gave its consent for credit shell scheme with validity until March 31. Airlines have established credit shell instead of refunding the fares that can be used by passengers with some terms and conditions attached.
Now here is what customers who booked air-ticket during the lockdown and are seeking refunds against cancelled flights can make from Supreme Court's October 1, 2020 ruling:
1. If the air ticket was booked during the lockdown duration from March 25 to May 25 via the airline's website or through an OTA then full refund shall be offered. This is for both domestic as well as international air travel.
2. If the booking has been made on the OTA website then the travel agency would make the refund.
3. For tickets booked for international travel from May 25, the refund of fares for passengers falling under the category shall be decided as per the provisions of Civil Aviation Requirements (CAR). This is for booking made for both domestic as well international airlines.
4. Also, the SC asked the airlines to pay 0.5 percent interest per month on delayed refunds of fares against tickets cancelled due to the Covid led curbs.
5. Credit shells will be valid until March 31, 2021 and if customers do not use the amount by that time, airlines will have to refund the fare together with interest payment. Notably, the amount locked in the credit shell can be utilized on any of the routes and can also be transferred.
"In all cases where credit shell is issued there shall be an incentive to compensate the passenger from the date of cancellation upto 30th June, 2020 in which event the credit shell shall be enhanced by 0.5 percent of the amount of fare collected) for every month or part thereof between the date of cancellation and 30th June, 2020. Thereafter the value of the credit shell shall be enhanced by 0.75 percent of the face value per month upto 31st March, 2021," a bench of the Supreme Court ruled on Thursday.