Finnair has 140,000 Unprocessed Refunds

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Finnair made headlines back in April (read more here) when the airline told the Finnish press that it had more than 100,000 unprocessed refunds.

Finnair

The airline stated that it had moved more employees to handle requests, but the queue is now 140,000 refund requests, and Finnair is still getting 1,500 refunds requests on most days.

The airline told Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat (access here) that it had already processed 160,000 refunds worth €247M.

Finnair, majority-owned by the State of Finland, was just recapitalized by share issuance. The airline got €512M.

Remember that both the European Union and the US DOT have reminded airlines numerous times to refund canceled flights promptly:

EU Commission: Passengers Are Eligible For CASH Refunds

British Airways

US DOT Reminds Airlines Again About Refunds

Conclusion

I find it ironic that the entire amount that the airline received from share issuance is primarily used to refund passengers (and likely then some).

If Finnair ends up refunding half a billion euros, how many billions each of the larger airlines (British Airways, Air France-KLM, Emirates, etc.) are seeing going out of the door?

You have to give Finnair a credit that at least they are providing refunds, however slowly that may take place. It shouldn’t be too difficult to move an adequate number of furloughed employees to deal with refunds so that they would be processed in a couple of weeks instead of umpteenth months.

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