Watchdog accuses easyJet of 'breaking rules'

Budget airline easyJet has been found to have broken advertising rules by increasing fares after promoting a 25 per cent discount on its routes, a watchdog has said.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) ruled that some passengers would have had to pay more for a seat than before the "Early Easter Sale" of "up to 25% off" on all seats on every route from 14 March to 30 June.

Following the high level of demand for low-cost seats some fares were increased to a higher price than those advertised before the reduction.

The ASA ruled that easyJet had offered discounts of up to 25 per cent on every seat and on every day of the promotion, and had followed rules by offering the maximum discount on 10 per cent of all seats. But when demand increased the cost of some fares, there were some customers who would have been better off buying their tickets before the promotion began.

The airline said seats were usually initially offered at their lowest price but increased as the departure date neared, and it was "entirely possible" that fares rose before that time. EasyJet maintained that all customers who bought tickets during the promotion had their price discounted.

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