Qantas glitch sees passengers appear to pay for flights twice

view of three qantas planes waiting at airport gates

Qantas customers have expressed anger and confusion on social media, saying they have been “charged twice” for flights they have booked.

After being unable to get through to the Qantas call centre, several consumers pleaded on Twitter for answers from the national carrier.

“Two hours on hold … totally unacceptable,” Gary Butterfield said in a post.

“This happened to me. I was charged twice, and it took 15 business days to get my funds back, after approximately 10 hours on hold with Qantas over a week,” Ruby Halloumi wrote.

Jake MacMullin, who had similar experience, tweeted: “I thought I’d search Twitter to see if other people have been waiting on hold for a while.”

Kay Steadman is one of the growing number of people who have voiced their concerns about the matter on social media.

She and her husband recently booked a trip to London using their debit Mastercard.

She said she noticed yesterday Qantas had billed them a second time.

“The two transactions that came out on Saturday were for $2025 each,” she said.

“Yesterday, I was billed by Qantas for another $4050.”

Ms Steadman, who works for ABC News, said after several unsuccessful attempts to reach Qantas by phone and email, she called her bank for help.

“Basically what [the bank] was saying is as soon as you put your card details in when you bought those initial flights, you have given your permission for that company to take funds from your account, and they can continue to take funds from your account,” she said.

“And there’s nothing I can do about it or the bank can do about it.”

Qantas urgently working to resolve issue 

The airline said it was aware that a small number of customers appeared to have been charged twice for flight bookings, but that was “not the case”.

Bank transactions
Bank transactions show a customer has been charged twice by Qantas in two days. (Supplied: Kay Steadman)

“Unfortunately, there is a delay in releasing pre-authorised funds which we are urgently working with our banking and payment partners to resolve,” a spokesperson told the ABC.

“The pre-authorised funds are being automatically released within three to seven days.

“If customers need the funds sooner, they should contact their banks to request a payment release.”

Ms Steadman said eventually Qantas confirmed to her it was a glitch and should be resolved within seven days.

Many consumers have criticised Qantas’ customer service since the pandemic began.

CEO Alan Joyce admitted that Qantas customers had been enduring excessive delays when trying to contact its customer service staff.

“I do apologise for anybody trying to get through to our call centre at the moment,” he said.

“Because the average wait time is an hour-and-a-half and we shouldn’t be at those levels for general calls, half an hour for premium calls.

“But that’s because our call centre, with these changes of borders, has gone from 5000 calls a day to 15,000 calls a day.”

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