Emirates completes refund backlogs

Emirates completes refund backlogs

Dubai flag carrier Emirates on Wednesday said it has completed its massive backlog of refund requests from the airline’s customers caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, returning Dh6.3 billion in refunds since April.

The airline said it received, validated and processed nearly 1.7 million refund requests in the past seven months.

Of the Dh6.3 billion sum, Dh4.7 billion was refunded to customers who had booked directly with the airline, with the remaining Dh1.6 billion returned via travel agencies.

“Thanks to the efforts of our refunds and customer service teams, the support and cooperation of our partners, and the understanding of our customers, Emirates has now cleared our backlog of refunds. We still have higher volumes of refunds and flight coupon change requests compared to pre-pandemic times, but we now have the capability to manage these within a seven-day turnaround,” Emirates airline president Tim Clark said.

Emirates said it managed over 130,000 refund-related queries from customers and travel agency partners and made status changes to nearly four million flight coupons. The carrier had massively increased its workforce at the peak of its refund project, dedicating 110 personnel to validate and process refunds requests.

“In the early months of 2020, Covid-19 massively disrupted travel around the world and led to an unprecedented volume of refunds requests across the aviation and travel industry, including at Emirates. It was not a situation any airline wanted, particularly while also facing a cash crunch from drastically reduced operations. Through those difficult months, as we dealt with the impact of the pandemic on our business, we’ve never lost sight of our commitment to our customers,” said Clark.

Early this week, the airline offered its customers a multi-risk travel insurance and Covid-19 cover, at no charge, on all tickets purchased on or from December 1, 2020. In addition to Covid-19 medical cover, this new generous offer from Emirates also has provisions for personal accidents during travel, winter sports cover, loss of personal belongings, and trip disruptions due to unexpected air space closure, travel recommendations or advisories, similar to other multi-risk travel insurance products.

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