holiday prices, says the OFT. Failure to advertise brochure prices
fairly will result in enforcement action.
that ASC should be included in basic holiday prices.
Aviation Security Charges were introduced following the terrorist
attacks of 11 September 2001 to cover increased insurance and
aviation security costs. Initial uncertainty about the size and
duration of the charges led to confusion over how prices should be
advertised. In fact the charges have remained constant - normally at
around £7 since that time - but some operators have not yet included
the charges in their advertised prices.
The OFT is making it clear that ASC should be included in the
headline price advertised in the brochure. Failure to do so will be
considered a breach of the Consumer Protection Act 1987, which the
OFT has the power to enforce under Part 8 of the Enterprise Act which
came into force in June 2003.
The OFT is currently considering complaints about failure to include
ASC in advertised prices.
Issuing the warning John Vickers, OFT chairman, said:
'The OFT and ABTA are making clear that ASCs should be included in
advertised prices. We will be monitoring the situation and will take
enforcement action where necessary against operators that mislead in
1. ABTA's code of practice has received stage one status under the
OFT's consumer codes of practice approval scheme. It is currently
working towards achieving stage two approval.
2. The OFT's approval scheme comprises two stages:
Stage one - the code sponsor makes a promise that its code meets the
OFT's core criteria in principle. The sponsor must make sure its code
contains measures designed to safeguard and protect consumers'
interests beyond the basic requirements of the law.
Stage two - the code sponsor must prove its code lives up to the
initial promise. The burden of proof lies with the sponsor. The
sponsor must show that the code is being effectively implemented and
that consumer disputes are properly resolved.
3. Part 8 to the Enterprise Act 2002 came into force on 20 June 2003,
replacing the consumer provisions of the Fair Trading Act and the
Stop Now Regulations. The Enterprise Act improves consumer protection
by giving enforcers strengthened powers to obtain court orders
against traders that breach a range of consumer legislation;
controlling activities such as misleading advertising, misleading
price indications, lotteries, sale of goods and services, underage
sales, estate agency, misleading health claims, trade descriptions,
mock auctions, timeshare, unfair terms in consumer contracts,
doorstep selling, distance selling, package travel and consumer