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Planes Grounded by Icelandic Ash

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701781.  Mon Apr 26, 2010 12:27 am Reply with quote

The reason ALL retailers don't impose a surcharge is because the charge that is made to them is so small that they swallow the charge. They also will be able to have information about where fraudulent transactions are made. They either know the merchant details from when the transactions are made face to face, or the delivery address when the transaction is made on line. It's been a while but I'm pretty certain that card providers still use address verification when they carry out transactions online.

But we digress, the conversation here is to do with airlines obligations to ensure you are fed and provide accommodation when your flight is cancelled and you are unable to travel. The fact remains that the rules are in place, and no amount of bleating about it not being anyones fault removes that. The question is. If you follow the guidance of the airline and stay away from the airport, only contacting them through their website, what constitutes a reasonable expense?

701792.  Mon Apr 26, 2010 3:09 am Reply with quote

That's conjecture. It's more likely that no such insurance was available


Aviation insurance is a shadowy, complex beastie, and I'm not even going to pretend I understand it - but the same broad principles will apply as with personal travel insurance.

Barb is right - it's a matter of risk. Some policies will cover your expenses completely, some will cover them up to a pre-specified amount and others won't pay you anything. I'm aware of policies that fall into all three categories, with the obvious differentiator being premium value.

Whether or not the insurer - or indeed the carrier - wants to provide cover to their customers beyond the strict terms of the policy wording is a commercial decision, and I have heard whisperings that precisely that is happening in some cases.

And thinking about it - I bet it'd be bloody cheap for an individual flying to (eg) Spain to arrange personal cover should a volcano cause him difficulty - and a lot more expensive for BA to arrange blanket coverage for all such possible events.

You'd be an idiot to buy specific volcano insurance. But, as I mentioned above, delays caused by adverse weather (of any stripe) is something which is either included or excluded in the policy wording.

And, indeed, you'd probably not be in complete comtrol of your faculties to believe that it's going to be cheaper to underwrite liability insurance on a per-customer basis. What do you think is going to spread the risk, and indeed the cost, further - buying one policy for the airline or 33 million individual polices, to use the number of people that flew BA last year?

It would not, however, surprise me in the slightest if Ryanair purchased the cheapest possible cover they could find to cover the minimum stipulations laid out in the mandatory requirements.

701802.  Mon Apr 26, 2010 4:12 am Reply with quote

Ion Zone wrote:
They don't have to be a doctor, but you are going to run into medical conditions more regularly in the air because it is stressful.

(My bold.)

I've never been on a flight that caused me to be 'stressful'. I have been on buses that have caused me to question the training of the driver and/or the sanity of some passengers - that caused me stress.

What is stressful about flying?

701807.  Mon Apr 26, 2010 4:21 am Reply with quote

Right, flying has to be the most boring mode of transport. The most sense ever to come from Prince Phillip's mouth was a response to a New Zealand dignitary who asked how the flight was. PTG replied "Have you flown before? well it was like that"

701846.  Mon Apr 26, 2010 5:36 am Reply with quote

FAQs from the ABI on travel insurance and ash-related claims

701939.  Mon Apr 26, 2010 8:00 am Reply with quote

Have spoken to my insurers, and they have made an offer in principle over the telephone.

It doesn't cover the total extra I had to lay out, however as mentioned earlier I was staying in a rather cosy hotel so I wasn't expecting a full refund, because of the place we stayed I was a little nervous about whether that would be looked on unfavourably, however the insurers are treating it as a delayed departure owing to weather so they have a fixed value for the loss. I'm happy with the offer in principle.

712883.  Wed May 26, 2010 12:25 pm Reply with quote

I just received the latest issue of Monato (an Esperanto news magazine). The editor's column is always amusing, and I thought QIers might enjoy it.

I'm translating on the fly here, so apologies for any clumsy wording, which is entirely mine and not the author's.

Stefan Maul wrote:

When, in the middle of April, the Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajokull erupted and produced a gigantic ash cloud, the Icelanders said to themselves, "Now we can take revenge and punish the capitalists who drove our land to the verge of bankruptcy!" And all the Icelanders gathered around the volcano and blew the ash cloud with all their might in the direction of continental Europe.

It followed that for several days all aircraft could neither take off nor land, and had to rest in the airports. The ash cloud halted the entire air traffic of Europe, so that our poor German chancellor Angela Merkel couldn't come straight home from the USA; she had to spend the night in Lisbon and travel overland to Berlin.

A similar situation occurred only after the attack of Islamist terrorists on 11 September 2001, when the USA banned all flights because they feared terrorists could crash more planes. But now nature has stopped the air traffic.

For me, this is another proof of my long-held assertion that airplanes are not capable of flight. If they could fly, they would have wings, like birds, bees, and flies. These creatures are completely unbothered by the ash cloud, because they can move themselves through the air. In contrast, a plane "flies" only in the manner of a thrown stone or fired cannonball: it's driven and pushed not by its rigid "wings", but by a turbine which emits gas from its rear at great speed. Planes like this cannot fly through an ash cloud because the ash particles block up the turbines, and so the oxygen, necessary to burn the gases, is depleted.

So, thousands of passengers have drastically experienced the proof that jet planes only seem to fly. Ever since Icarus, man has tried in vain to imitate nature and fly by his own strength, like birds and other living creatures. Now nature too on this terrain has shown man that, from time to time, it is stronger than him.

Besides, God said to Noah and his family after the flood, "Be fruitful and multiply, bring forth abundantly on the earth and multiply in it." He didn't say we should go forth in the air. So perhaps it wasn't the Icelanders taking revenge, but God who sent the ash cloud to remind man about being forbidden to go forth in the air?

It helps in Esperanto that the "wings" of animals (flugiloj) and the "wings" of planes (aloj) are two entirely different words.

I've taken the Bible quotation directly from the English rather than translating from the Esperanto, which dilutes the meaning slightly because the Esperanto version says something more like "move forth upon the earth".

720602.  Thu Jun 17, 2010 5:09 pm Reply with quote

Well two months after the fact, we have finally recieved our offer from BA.
They haven't met some of the expenses, but they have accepted the charges they are obliged to meet, and my concern about the hotel being "reasonable" were unfounded, and they have accepted that as we had booked to stay in an upscale hotel it was acceptable to continue in the same hotel.

720678.  Fri Jun 18, 2010 5:56 am Reply with quote

We didn't even get to fly when the ash settled over Europe. We will though receive the full amount that we paid out for the trip to Mallorca once we hand in our bank details to the university.

733339.  Fri Aug 13, 2010 2:06 am Reply with quote

Here is a Dailymail comment on the high life of flying.

818828.  Tue May 24, 2011 9:37 am Reply with quote

With planes grounded, and pictures of people sleeping on airport floors and complaining about 'not getting information' seeping back into the news, I suppose it's time to ressurect this thread.

I can't fail to notice, too, that O'Leary is straight back on the interview circuit bleating about wanting to fly his planes despite the warnings.

As much as I don't want a Ryanair plane to drop out of the sky, consigning all onboard to certain doom, I fear it really will be the only thing that will get O'Leary to wrench his own cock out of his mouth and maybe consider the ongoing safety of his passengers. After all, you can't rape the wallets of corpses.

818849.  Tue May 24, 2011 10:27 am Reply with quote

According to Sky News, Ryanair flew a plane from Glasgow to Edinburgh via Inverness and Aberdeen (supposedly the ash hot spot) and it landed just fine.

I know it's Sky News, but if it does turn out to be true, you've gotta wonder what kind of pressure (or bribery) was brought to bear on that particular pilot.

818851.  Tue May 24, 2011 10:29 am Reply with quote

I should have thought the mere threat of having MIchael O'Leary in the same room as him if he refused...

818881.  Tue May 24, 2011 11:36 am Reply with quote

Neotenic wrote:
As much as I don't want a Ryanair plane to drop out of the sky, consigning all onboard to certain doom, I fear it really will be the only thing that will get O'Leary to wrench his own cock out of his mouth and maybe consider the ongoing safety of his passengers. After all, you can't rape the wallets of corpses.

You certainly have a colo(u)rful turn of phrase. :)

The President of Iceland was just on CNN. His surname is Grimsson? Seems rather fitting. He didn't say anything of consequence. Paraphrasing: "Compared to what you in America are going through, we in Iceland can count ourselves as very fortunate."

818882.  Tue May 24, 2011 11:39 am Reply with quote

It is true. There's a lengthy statement on Ryanair's website from which you'll be left in no doubt that Ryanair believe the decision made by the CAA and its Irish counterpart to be the wrong one.

easyjet and British Airways are not adopting the same trenchant tone. Rather shamefully, the front page of bmi's website chooses not to mention the existence of a problem.


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