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British Airways passengers left £1,000s out of pocket after payment error – here's how to complain and get your money back

Some British Airways passengers have been mistakenly charged twice after booking flights and holidays through its website this month, the airline has confirmed. It's left some £1,000s out of pocket and pushed others into their overdrafts. If you were overcharged, you'll be refunded automatically – though you'll need to apply to reclaim any extra costs incurred, such as overdraft and credit card fees.

Below is everything you need to know. For more on understanding your rights when purchases or services go wrong, see our Consumer Rights guide.

British Airways passengers left £1,000s out of pocket after payment error

Some British Airways customers who booked flights and package holidays on Monday 1 January 2024 have been charged twice due to an error. 

British Airways has apologised for the the mistake and said it is currently investigating the cause of the issue, adding that it impacts a proportion of online bookings. Bookings made via third parties are not affected.   

The airline wouldn't tell us how many people are impacted, but we've seen over 100 complaints about the problem on X (formally known as Twitter) over the past week, with MoneySavers complaining to us directly as well. Here's a selection of some of the complaints we've seen on X: 

Affected by the error? Refunds will be paid automatically, so keep an eye out

British Airways told us that "all refunds" have "now been processed and should arrive in customers' accounts shortly". Exactly how long it'll take to receive this payment will vary depending on your bank, so make sure you keep an eye out for the payment.

If you don't receive a refund from British Airways as expected, or you're unhappy about the treatment you've received, you can make an official complaint via British Airways' website.

If British Airways still refuses to play ball, contact your debit or credit card provider for help – you may be able to get your money back via the Chargeback scheme or, if you paid on credit card and your trip cost over £100, Section 75.

Been charged additional fees? Contact British Airways to get these reimbursed

If you've incurred any related costs as a result of the issue – for example, overdraft or credit card fees – gather any evidence of this and complain to British Aiways. 

It told us it will repay any associated fees. You just need to visit the website and select 'Bookings and reservations'. You'll be asked for your last name and booking reference. From there, you'll be able to report the fees you incurred and provide any evidence, such as bank or credit card statements. 

If British Airways ignores your request or you're unhappy with the response you do get, you can refer your complaint to alternative dispute resolution service, the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) (though be aware that a £25 fee for unsuccessful cases may apply). 

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