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Published on Friday, June 7, 2019

Airlines accused of rip-off car hire and insurance deals


Consumer champion claims Which? Travel claims airline car rental and insurance deals are a rip-off.

It looked at prices of holiday extras, such as car hire, offered by seven airlines flying to Europe and compared these to the quotes it received by shopping around.

It claims that, in some cases, passengers were paying more for inferior products.

For example, when booking a flight from Newcastle to Malaga with easyJet, it was offered carhire for £119 with Europcar, which was £73 more than a deal Which? Travel was offered with Centauro, a car hire broker it rates more highly.

When booking a British Airways flight from Heathrow to Larnaca it was quoted £126 for a week's rental with Avis, compared to £75 with Which? recommended provider Enterprise.

In response, BA said: "We offer a range of convenient options, including car hire, to allow customers to tailor their trip to suit their needs. Prices are likely to differ between different car hire companies, and without providing specific details we can't verify that a fair comparison was made."

When Which? added travel insurance to a Jet2 flight from Manchester to Faro, it was quoted £17.50. While the price was similar to a standalone policy with Staysure, Jet2's policy only offered £1,000 for loss baggage and belongings - £500 less than the minimum recommend by Which?. It also pointed out that the Jet2 policy had a high excess of £175.

Wizz Air's add-on insurance with Chubb has a maximum of up to £500 for cancellation and curtailment plus flight cost, which falls short of the £3,000 advised by Which?

"We also felt Ryanair's cover with Europ Assistance - while cheap at £12.91 for a week in Spain - didn't provide an adequate level of cover," it said.

Other extras, such as return coach transfers in Krakow with Wizz Air, cost almost £12 more than the public bus.

"Our advice is to shop around and not be automatically seduced by the easy option when it comes to buying extras for your holiday," said Which?

TravelMole invited easyJet and Wizz to comment on the report.

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