I would like your help on my rights as a consumer in UK against SIA operating in UK, which has unfairly charged me £200.00 for the cancellation of my flight from London to Singapore. I went to the SIA Krisflyer members online website on 20 Jul 2009 for a flight to Singapore on 1 Aug 2009. I paid for the flights using my credit card £947.20. On 22 July 2009, I found out that my girlfriend would not be in Singapore on 1 August 2009 so I went online to cancel the booking. On 28 July, I received an email from SIA that they would refund the fare I paid less cancellation charges of £200.00. I have received the refund less the £200.00 which SIA has insisted they I was bound by their terms and conditions and they were entitled to charge me the £200.00 for cancellation. I would like to know what are my rights as a consumer to recover some of the £200.00 charged as I consider the amount extortionate and unfair. Are such terms and conditions classified as a penalty which I believe is unlawful and voidable in consumer contracts? Also, can I argue that these terms and conditions SIA seeks to rely on are voidable under the Unfair Contract Terms Act and its amendments?
I would really appreciate your help on this as £200.00 is a huge amount for me. Thank you. Michael at firstname.lastname@example.org