Didn't expect this to be my breaking point, but it finally came!

Noob question, do you need to live in Victoria to take Qantas to VCAT? Is it better to use vcat, ncat, acat for claims against Qantas. Almost feel like this whole topic of claims could make an interesting article or affonair podcast. @AFF Editor 🤓
I don’t know! Personally I would make my claim in the state i live, in the event you had to go and make your case in person.
 
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I know sometimes it’s about getting some satisfaction and I agree I sometimes push the point home to get a business to understand its obligations.

But on the other side somethings need to let go so you don’t become bitter and twisted.

Keep the balance and remember first world problems.
 
I know sometimes it’s about getting some satisfaction and I agree I sometimes push the point home to get a business to understand its obligations.

But on the other side somethings need to let go so you don’t become bitter and twisted.

Keep the balance and remember first world problems.
"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing"
 
An update is deserved here for those who followed along and provided advice (original post quoted for ease of reference).

I did indeed file an NCAT claim on principle (g-d bless my stubbornness) after first following through with a wise but ultimately futile recommendation to e-mail an executive, which went unanswered.

What would you know? Within a week of the claim being filed I received an e-mail from Qantas agreeing to reimburse me for my piddly $200 hotel claim after all. The e-mail did not reference the claim I'd filed, only that they'd "revisited" my "correspondence" as if spontaneously or by happenstance and apparently had a change of heart despite having previously denied it repeatedly with increasingly snippier iterations of "we're sorry this isn't the outcome you wanted but the matter is closed."

Woop-dee-doo, I "won" after hours of wasted time. Really a treat that it takes not just threats of but actual steps taken to pursue a remedy in court to hold Qantas to account, but I can't say I'm surprised. If this is Qantas doing better by its customers as promised, I'll continue to stick with competitors, and only fly QF where not doing so would be a further inconvenience and punishment to myself.

As an aside, in my heart of hearts, I'm not sure I'll ever not want Qantas to succeed, but it really just blows that Qantas continues to make it this hard to cheer them on.
Good on you for your persistence @FlyingKangaroo
Might pave the way for others with issues, hopefully Qantas have learned from your determination - but I doubt it.
 
Sounds like a de facto ombudsman at this point... and apparently a reliable second point of call if you're willing to spend $80 or so
And if the claim in only $25 then you're spending that money on principle?

Businesses get away with heaps knowing it's difficult to challenge them even when they're in the wrong.
 
Exactly my point, we are not talking about the blizkreig in 1940 we’re talking seat changes and slow refunds.
If enough people make the effort pursuing the small claims, the opportunity and support for the more significant claims might follow - and that will hopefully annoy the people in the airline who dismiss claims on the basis they are too difficult or too costly for the Customer to pursue. The reason they settle at the last minute is to keep any adverse decisions from building momentum.
 
If enough people make the effort pursuing the small claims, the opportunity and support for the more significant claims might follow - and that will hopefully annoy the people in the airline who dismiss claims on the basis they are too difficult or too costly for the Customer to pursue.
I have been a regular reader of the EU(/UK) 261 mega threads in the British Airways FlyerTalk forum.

In the early days the airlines generally employed such methods (obfuscation, delay, ignoring claims, etc.) to avoid being forced to comply with the regulation. This was generally effective enough to more than cover the costs of dealing with more persistent claimants.

It was only when the UK introduced MCOL in 2011 (small claims court equivalent) simplifying the process for UK resident claimants that the airlines began to comply with much reduced resistance.


 
If enough people make the effort pursuing the small claims, the opportunity and support for the more significant claims might follow - and that will hopefully annoy the people in the airline who dismiss claims on the basis they are too difficult or too costly for the Customer to pursue. The reason they settle at the last minute is to keep any adverse decisions from building momentum.

I don't disagree, but don't let the little things in life ruin living. Plenty of bitter people out there over the tiny stuff and big companies don't care.
 
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I don't disagree, but don't let the little things in life ruin living. Plenty of bitter people out there over the tiny stuff and big companies don't care.
Lodging a Small Claims proceeding or not being bitter, are not mutually exclusive.

I've lodged a VCAT claim in the past (for a different type of consumer dispute), and didn't let it get in the way of my day-to-day life.

Filed the paperwork, didn't pay it any mind until the hearing day - when the company finally decided to do the right thing and settle.

Good on the OP. I agree with the general sentiment - the more people who protect their rights through an avenue like this, the more likely QF will do the right thing for the masses going forward.
 
Lodging a Small Claims proceeding or not being bitter, are not mutually exclusive.

I've lodged a VCAT claim in the past (for a different type of consumer dispute), and didn't let it get in the way of my day-to-day life.

Filed the paperwork, didn't pay it any mind until the hearing day - when the company finally decided to do the right thing and settle.

Good on the OP. I agree with the general sentiment - the more people who protect their rights through an avenue like this, the more likely QF will do the right thing for the masses going forward.
I agree with this entirely. I (and a lot of people) had a particular credit card company (UK based, I'll bitterly dispute issues all over the world) which closed my and a lot of other peoples' accounts (as they have every right to do, which I made clear I had no issue with), but then not only refused to award points and free night certificates earned to date, but also those earned during the notice period (not being immediate closures due to suspicion of fraud etc.), without disclosing this anywhere in the T&Cs or the letters of closure (and even if they had in the latter, we would have expected those accrued prior to the notice being given to be honoured), which I very much did have an issue with.

This resulted in a lot of MCOL claims and FOS complaints. I'm not sure of the exact figures, but there were a lot of people (myself and my OH included) where they backed down just as the Ombudsman was reviewing the claims, awarded all outstanding points, the free night certificates and refunded the annual fees for the final year. I was then more than happy to withdraw the complaint, but it was absolutely ridiculous that it took almost two years to get to that stage. It took near zero of my attention between filing the complaint until the day they backed down though, so yes it may take time, but out of principle it's worth doing.
 
An update is deserved here for those who followed along and provided advice (original post quoted for ease of reference).

I did indeed file an NCAT claim on principle (g-d bless my stubbornness) after first following through with a wise but ultimately futile recommendation to e-mail an executive, which went unanswered.

What would you know? Within a week of the claim being filed I received an e-mail from Qantas agreeing to reimburse me for my piddly $200 hotel claim after all. The e-mail did not reference the claim I'd filed, only that they'd "revisited" my "correspondence" as if spontaneously or by happenstance and apparently had a change of heart despite having previously denied it repeatedly with increasingly snippier iterations of "we're sorry this isn't the outcome you wanted but the matter is closed."

Woop-dee-doo, I "won" after hours of wasted time. Really a treat that it takes not just threats of but actual steps taken to pursue a remedy in court to hold Qantas to account, but I can't say I'm surprised. If this is Qantas doing better by its customers as promised, I'll continue to stick with competitors, and only fly QF where not doing so would be a further inconvenience and punishment to myself.

As an aside, in my heart of hearts, I'm not sure I'll ever not want Qantas to succeed, but it really just blows that Qantas continues to make it this hard to cheer them on.
You would think that Qantas would be more amenable having received millions of dollars from Australian taxpayers with no requirement pay any of it back, despite its increased profits. How many other private businesses had that level of publicly funded support during Covid?
 
You would think that Qantas would be more amenable having received millions of dollars from Australian taxpayers with no requirement pay any of it back, despite its increased profits. How many other private businesses had that level of publicly funded support during Covid?
Harvey Norman.
I'll never shop there again.
 
I, too, have had to resort to filing proceedings against Qantas for a missing points claim that has been incorrectly rejected.

It is absurd. I have had to file in the Supreme Court (NCAT generally can't order specific performance of a contract). The filing fee far, far outweighs the nominal value of the SCs and points. I will get that back from them, but I am just flabbergasted that they would conduct themselves like this. I am a WP / Lifetime Gold. I avoid Qantas wherever possible.
 
That is wild @bmcc, and good luck. Given what I know about Qantas, I'm not surprised, but as a lawyer, I actually am.

Qantas is not unusual among companies in their decision not to empower frontline (and even escalation-level) staff to address concerns properly, and to be fair/realistic, there often is a lot of unreasonable "noise" that comes in at first instance. However, it's truly baffling that they're seemingly so arrogant, disorganised, and/or incompetent that they haven't managed to implement and/or successfully carry out a substantive escalations process for those staff to follow when certain keywords or phrases are used that suggest a customer appears to be acting reasonably and is aware, capable, and at high risk of taking formal action.

Mention the Australian Financial Complaints Authority when dealing with a bank or the Energy and Water Ombudsman when dealing with a utility company and you'll often find that even weeks of being stalemated against a brick wall will almost instantly yield immediate resolution directly from the provider. Of course, Qantas isn't in a similarly regulated industry, but it still blows my mind that competent references to, e.g., their Conditions of Carriage, the Australian Consumer Law, or competently and matter-of-factly threatening a small claims action or ACCC complaint doesn't appear to trigger even a hint of further review or scrutiny. Or worse, perhaps they've simply made the cynical business decision to wait it out and reactively address claims actually filed one-by-one based on internal data we don't have.

It's cost them my loyalty, but that's decidedly of no concern to them.
 
That is wild @bmcc, and good luck. Given what I know about Qantas, I'm not surprised, but as a lawyer, I actually am.

Qantas is not unusual among companies in their decision not to empower frontline (and even escalation-level) staff to address concerns properly, and to be fair/realistic, there often is a lot of unreasonable "noise" that comes in at first instance. However, it's truly baffling that they're seemingly so arrogant, disorganised, and/or incompetent that they haven't managed to implement and/or successfully carry out a substantive escalations process for those staff to follow when certain keywords or phrases are used that suggest a customer appears to be acting reasonably and is aware, capable, and at high risk of taking formal action.

Mention the Australian Financial Complaints Authority when dealing with a bank or the Energy and Water Ombudsman when dealing with a utility company and you'll often find that even weeks of being stalemated against a brick wall will almost instantly yield immediate resolution directly from the provider. Of course, Qantas isn't in a similarly regulated industry, but it still blows my mind that competent references to, e.g., their Conditions of Carriage, the Australian Consumer Law, or competently and matter-of-factly threatening a small claims action or ACCC complaint doesn't appear to trigger even a hint of further review or scrutiny. Or worse, perhaps they've simply made the cynical business decision to wait it out and reactively address claims actually filed one-by-one based on internal data we don't have.

It's cost them my loyalty, but that's decidedly of no concern to them.
Agreed on all points. I only got to this points after 7 email exchanges with 4 different agents. Pointed to the relevant clause in the QFF T&Cs and the earning table, cross-ref'd to fare class, sent copies of boarding passes and e-ticket. All in very plan language (it is evident that the email agents are not native English speakers, which I have no issue with, but it does seem to cause some comprehension issues).

I then had 2 phone calls which led to the same brick wall. I then sent a draft of the SOC to the legal team. No response at all. Just unbelievable.
 
Lodging a Small Claims proceeding or not being bitter, are not mutually exclusive.

I've lodged a VCAT claim in the past (for a different type of consumer dispute), and didn't let it get in the way of my day-to-day life.

Filed the paperwork, didn't pay it any mind until the hearing day - when the company finally decided to do the right thing and settle.

Good on the OP. I agree with the general sentiment - the more people who protect their rights through an avenue like this, the more likely QF will do the right thing for the masses going forward.
Unless you have no claim at all or there are many thousands of dollars at stake, all big companies settle. It’s cheaper and there is no reputational damage.
 
Just saw this thread and thought I'd chime in here. On the face of it, Qantas may have violated Australian Consumer Law. Namely the Civil Aviation Legislation Amendment (1999 Montreal Convention and Other Measures) Act of 2008 which codifies into Australian law all of the provisions of the 1999 Montreal Convention. Most notably Article 19 of the convention states that carriers like Qantas are liable for damages of up to 5,346 special drawing rights (equivalent to $10,700 AUD). These damages would cover anything caused by the delay. So if you need to get a hotel, or book a new flight, well that's on Qantas'. If I were taking that to VCAT I would certainly cite this as a breach of law. I would also be very punitive and extract every single nickel I incurred in out of pocket expenses related to the delay since Qantas decided to drag this out rather than do the right thing.

Qantas and frankly all airlines in the world need to realize that they have no god given right to transport passengers internationally. It is a privilege that is granted to them only when two nations agree to accept their traffic and by extension the rules and regulations surrounding such transport including adherence to national and international laws like the Montreal Convention. Heck, the United States requires foreign airlines flying into their country to waive caps on bodily injured imposed by these conventions just to be granted the privilege to fly there. It's why you'll never see airlines stiffing injured passengers the way a certain Southeast Asian airline did.

-RooFlyer88
 
Just saw this thread and thought I'd chime in here. On the face of it, Qantas may have violated Australian Consumer Law. Namely the Civil Aviation Legislation Amendment (1999 Montreal Convention and Other Measures) Act of 2008 which codifies into Australian law all of the provisions of the 1999 Montreal Convention. Most notably Article 19 of the convention states that carriers like Qantas are liable for damages of up to 5,346 special drawing rights (equivalent to $10,700 AUD). These damages would cover anything caused by the delay. So if you need to get a hotel, or book a new flight, well that's on Qantas'. If I were taking that to VCAT I would certainly cite this as a breach of law. I would also be very punitive and extract every single nickel I incurred in out of pocket expenses related to the delay since Qantas decided to drag this out rather than do the right thing.

Qantas and frankly all airlines in the world need to realize that they have no god given right to transport passengers internationally. It is a privilege that is granted to them only when two nations agree to accept their traffic and by extension the rules and regulations surrounding such transport including adherence to national and international laws like the Montreal Convention. Heck, the United States requires foreign airlines flying into their country to waive caps on bodily injured imposed by these conventions just to be granted the privilege to fly there. It's why you'll never see airlines stiffing injured passengers the way a certain Southeast Asian airline did.

-RooFlyer88
Someone on AFF has already referred to the problem for NCAT and other similar Tribunals have that involve federal jurisdiction. QF previously raised it as a defense.

The adoption of the Warsaw Convention and the Montreal Convention was a Commonwealth matter and therefore involves federal jurisdiction.

See specifically the references in the attached:



As noted, the Tribunal may still attempt to settle matters, if requested, but cannot hear the matter as a Tribunal.
 

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