Money alert: Travel companies' costly calls


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The Independent Online

Travel firms are making their customers use premium-rate phone lines when they want to make a complaint.

Research by Which? this week revealed that seven out of 10 firms use expensive numbers for their complaints and customer lines.

They included 24 airlines, such as Ryanair, Monarch Airlines, FlyBe, KLM, Aer Lingus and Lufthansa, which typically use 0871 numbers costing at least 10p a minute from a landline but considerably more from a mobile.

The worst example uncovered was which used a 09 premium-rate number for its general enquiries line – at a cost of 60p a minute! After it was named and shamed the airline agreed to scrap its 09 number but other high-charge numbers remain.

Which? is urging the Government to end the rip-off call charges and force firms to offer a basic-rate number for all.

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