The advertisement stated:
“25% OFF ALL FARES
Remember when airlines appreciated their passengers? We are pleased to offer you 25% OFF CityJet flights!
To avail of this offer simply enter promo code BREAKAWAY when booking on cityjet.com
All of our fares include
• Free Checked Bags
• Free Drinks & Snacks
• Free Seat Selection
Now that’s flying as it used to be, priced as it should be!
Book now on cityjet.com
*Terms & Conditions apply:
• Offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other promotional offer and subject to availability.
• Discount applies to fare only.
• 25% discount available on selected flights booked through www.cityjet.com
• 12 day advance purchase required
• LCY-DUB / DUB/LCY route only
• Offer applies to travel period 4 December 2017 to 27 October 2018 on selected flights
• Offer ends 27 November 2017”
The complainant considered the claim “25% off all fares” to be misleading because the small print stated it was only off selected flights.
The advertisers stated that they operate flights under wet lease arrangements on behalf of other airlines. They said these operations represent 80% of their business. They said wet lease flights are not sold though the CityJet website and are separate from CityJet’s scheduled services.
The advertisers stated that during the time of the promotion, their sole scheduled route was Dublin to London City. They said they also had a code share route from London City to Amsterdam which was operated by another airline. They said they previously operated scheduled flights from Cork to London City, London City to Nantes, Amsterdam and Florence. They said they have reintroduced the Florence route for Summer 2018 and these flights could not be booked at the time of the offer.
The advertisers said that they included the reference to the “LCY-DUB/DUB-LCY route only” to ensure clarity as to the fact that they operated scheduled flights on the Dublin to London City route only.
The Complaints Committee considered the details of the complaint and the advertisers’ response.
The Committee noted that the advertisement had included a qualification to the offer in the footnote. They considered, however, that consumers would understand the claim “25% off all fares”, with an invitation to visit a website and quote a promotional code, to be an offer of 25% off all the fares available for purchase, regardless of destination, on the website. Whether a flight was a codeshare or not was not considered by the Committee to be a factor that consumers would be aware of. The Committee considered that the qualification in the footnote referring to the single route the offer was valid on, was a contradiction of the headline and in breach of Section 4.6 of the Code.
The advertisement should not appear in the same format again.