Anger over free flights renewed

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The Independent Online
HUNDREDS of Hoover customers have been angered by the latest twist in the ill-fated free flights promotion that has cost the Merthyr Tydfil-based company more than pounds 20m.

Calls to Mid Glamorgan trading standards officers this week complained of impossible deadlines for accepting promised air tickets. Thousands of people who bought Hoover appliances in 1992 in response to an offer of two free tickets to the US or Europe, are still waiting for their flights.

The complaints followed the despatch on Christmas Eve of 40,000 letters offering flights in January and February. Many letters, which demanded a written reply before 5 January, took more than 10 days to arrive, giving customers less than 24 hours to respond.

Harry Cichy, of the Hoover Holiday Pressure Group, said yesterday: 'Hoover are continuing to try to discourage and eliminate free flight customers by putting insurmountable or unreasonable conditions to travel.'

A Hoover spokesman said that there had been an 'administrative mix-up'. Customers would be given an extra two days to reply.