11 national airline ticket websites with misleading advertising

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An investigation carried out in 16 European countries found that half of the airline ticket websites mislead the user. In Portugal, 16 sites were analyzed and eleven revealed irregularities in the way they communicate their offers. The main flaws are in terms of prices, contractual terms or the clarity of the conditions of the offer, says the European Commission that conducted the investigation.

Portugal was included in this group of countries where, in the last week of September, inspections were carried out on 447 sites. The action was the first of its kind and involved 15 authorities from the various countries analyzed. The aim was to confirm that the information provided in terms of contractual conditions, availability and price indication complied with Community consumer law legislation. The action targeted major European air carriers, low cost airlines, as well as other tourism sites that sell airline tickets.

The sites where irregularities were detected now have a period of four months to correct the detected situations, after which they will be subject to a new inspection.

The action coordinated by the European Commission’s consumer protection area will be carried out periodically to guarantee the veracity of the information announced to the consumer and eliminate misleading advertising.

Sites from Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Denmark, Spain, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Italy, Lithuania, Malta and Sweden were also analyzed. The country with the highest number of sites with irregularities was Belgium with 46 of the 48 sites analyzed showing misleading advertising.

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