All go this week, as the New Year brings a ton of changes that affect consumers. We explore what they mean for you!
From next week, Ryanair customers will no longer be able to carry holdalls and small suitcases onto the plane for free. Ryanair will instead levy a £10 charge per return flight for the privilege! Passengers will only be allowed to carry on a small handbag or laptop bag (35cm x 20 cm x 20 cm). All other bags will be placed in the hold (free of charge).
This means that more of your bags will be at risk of damage in the hold – and you should probably switch to carrying a hardshell case!
Remember, if you’re concerned that your luggage has been damaged in transit, you should report any problems to the airline before leaving the airport!
Also coming next week is the new Payment Services Directive.
This is an important piece of legislation that tightens the rules around the sending and receiving of money by payment service providers (businesses like banks or money transfer companies), giving you more rights when you want to complain about a transfer that’s gone wrong.
The legislation offers additional protection from unauthorised charges, mistakes, and duplicate transactions, placing stricter time limits on businesses for responding to your complaints.
We’ll be updating Resolver with everything you need to know, so there’s no need to worry about being caught out!
The legislation will make significant changes to the way you pay with debit and credit cards.
From Saturday 13th January, the businesses affected by the Payment Services Directive (banks, money transfer companies, and, crucially, card payment services) will no longer be allowed to apply additional charges for card payments.
This may be good news for consumers, as it should prevent all businesses from charging consumers for paying by card – provided that the business they’re dealing with uses a bank that is based in the EU.
In principle, the Consumer Rights (Payment Surcharges) Regulations only allow businesses to charge you for legitimate costs incurred to them. Now that the Payment Services Directive prohibits payment service providers from applying fees for paying with a specific payment method, you can’t be charged extra for paying with your card since businesses can no longer claim to be covering a legitimate cost!
This means that the days of having to fork out an extra 50p at the newsagent may be over – although businesses may just up their prices in response.
While some traders have said they will not make price adjustments, JustEat have already changed their payment system to incorporate an extra service charge for all transactions, prompting criticism.
Furthermore, there are concerns that many smaller retailers will decide to refuse card transactions completely! It is likely, however, that more companies will choose to adopt minimum card payments, as these are still allowed under the legislation.
Those running small businesses should be aware that they can still be charged fees for purchases made using their business card, since the rules banning fees only apply to consumers!
If you find that a company is charging you extra to pay via credit card, you should use Resolver to make a complaint.