UKICC - 21% upsurge in transport-related complaints

UK consumer complaints about transport have gone up by just over a fifth (20.7%), the latest UK International Consumer Centre (UKICC) 2022 quarterly data report (from April to June 2022) shows.  Experts indicate they are expected to rise further, according to the UKICC.

Cases rose to 471 cases in the second three months of the year (from 390 in the first three months of the year), cementing the category’s position as the most complained about classification for complaints by UK consumers.

Service Director at the UKICC, Andy Allen, said: “This upsurge in complaints about transport is exactly what we would expect, considering the big increase in overseas visits by UK residents in the second quarter of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021.”

300 of the UKICC’s transport complaints were about air travel which is up from 268 in the same period in 2021. 126 air travel complaints related to flight cancellations.

According to the Office for National Statistics, April and May 2022 (saw a rise in overseas air travel visits by UK consumers. In April 2022, UK residents made 5.6 million visits overseas, by air, compared with 260,000 visits the previous April (2021). The amount they spent rose from £310 million to £4.1 billion.

During May 2022, UK residents made 2.7 million overseas visits by air compared to just 86,000 visits in May 2021 when there were still some COVID-19 travel restrictions in place. Their spending rose from £344 million to £4.7 billion.

Andy said: “The lifting of coronavirus (COVID-19) travel restrictions can explain the growth in both the number of visits by UK consumers overseas and the follow-on effect of more complaints about transport.

“Whether consumer buying behaviour is back to normal yet is another matter, as some people are still wary of going overseas. Our opinion is that this hang-over from the COVID-19 pandemic is probably being compounded by the problems experienced earlier in 2022 by big queues at UK airports.

“There is still a very tangible demand for the UKICC’s service and we expect complaints about transport to carry on growing. We’re proud to be able to say to UK consumers that we’re still here, we’re still helping and we’re still free. “