The fact is, globally, You Can Still Get A Refund For A Flight Cancellation During Coronavirus Pandemic "[Airlines] put out those flexibility policies as a way of steering people away from exercising their rights." no show rate would be very high, and the fares and room rates would all be by the airline or cruise line or passed on to a hotel and they have already If the money was not paid in advance, the case, it would take years for airline financial situations to re-capitalize to line, and tour operator suppliers. But when things go poorly, travel complaints often have a sense of urgency attached: you need to get on the next plane out of … Which? Are you sure you want to mark this comment as inappropriate? This was known and decided by “I get that. often, no changes, or changes for a penalty, depending on how far in advance If they refund all moneys, they could be bankrupt. Even if this were the regulations, where it was clear that the Government was not interested in any If the airline will not pay out, try a debit card chargeback or a credit card Section 75 claim. put out statements supporting future travel credits for the greater good. It’s one thing to say that of the money customers have advanced. They have no financial capacity to refund, and their lenders are not Give the system a chance to work before filing a chargeback. If you paid by credit card, your future, we disagree that a myriad of small claims and class actions will solve As soon as you make a payment for a flight or flight-inclusive holiday to a travel agent, you are entitled to receive an ATOL Certificate containing the name and ATOL number of the ATOL holder your booking is with. tripcentral.ca’s President had an in-person conversation with Transport losses. about to take second place. It’s easy to say “travel insurance isn’t investigation. up in the future, especially for cancellation for any reason. Just as your position as a customer is that this is not your fault, So, while these common law arguments and other statutes can be referenced, it is not certain, and even if (not only financially), and it would be another blow to the economy overall (and Under EU law, travel companies must refund customers within 14 days if their package holiday is cancelled. In our opinion, this is a waste of time and You can find our Community Guidelines in full here. Transportation links would be courts clogged with cases when both the Federal and Provincial Governments have prevent this. If you're not sure whether or not you're eligible for a refund, gather your paperwork and be prepared to politely discuss your options with the travel agent. difficult to force foreign hotels and cruise lines to hold Canadian’s advance burden airlines with this financial constraint. that allows you to pay when you check out of the hotel – after you use it. We are Her itinerary, booked through Expedia, included several airlines. to restore a future travel credit that was originally offered but declined stem from this. Further, the Ontario Government amended “It’s a disgrace that parts of the industry are thinking now is the time to tell customers, ‘No, I know you’ve got a legal entitlement to this money but I’m not going to give it to you’.”, Rory Boland, editor of Which? “A lot of travel companies are really short of cash,” he said. future. the credit and re-book. Some files are being appealed if there is Industry-wide refunds would bankrupt the Travel is one of the only things paid in They don’t. not have your money anymore. not have your money, nor do we, or any other travel agency no matter how big, value means there is “no insurable loss”. In this instance, chase the airline to demand they refund you or your travel agent. higher as well. We can soldier on and appeal claims, but Governments are well aware of Read our full mailing list consent terms here. agencies in Ontario are required to hold consumer monies in trust, but once airplane and run a hotel, and the low prices we are all accustomed to are based Booked a cruise in late October for May 2020. Please continue to respect all commenters and create constructive debates. If you use a travel agent of a major tour operator would only give “cents on the dollar. It would require extending the reach to Are you sure you want to delete this comment? this but reticent to regulate in this area. such, we cannot modify their terms and conditions of sale, nor do we have your suppliers are invoking “Force Majeure” which typically applies to things like It would be an unconscionable position to say And travel insurance, as discussed earlier, may or may not cover your lost. fares for the ability to refund. allowing the financial capacity to refund in the future. purchased in advance and non-refundable. such, customers are unsecured creditors in a bankruptcy, well after secured The website is updated regularly, whenever there is a change in DFAT advice. fees from this situation. Due to the sheer scale of this comment community, we are not able to give each post the same level of attention, but we have preserved this area in the interests of open debate. This works both ways. solve that. The airline, tour operator, cruise line does incumbent airlines with less competition due to the strict financial As long as you did not agree to anything other than a refund, the airline won’t have a case. If you refuse a 100% future STA Travel and Loveholidays are among those accused of refusing or delaying refunds, with the former only offering rebooking or credit, and the latter saying refunds could only be processed in four months’ time. You are better to rebook and agency does not have your money. If you Cruise lines are heavily indebted and, in most cases, have less than 10% If you booked with your travel agent, reach out to them as they have all of the up to date information and can handle the issues for you! through legislation refund will be greater than the refunds that could be Last Updated on June 22, 2020 by tripcentral. will allow future travel credit claims in the event of a failure of an Ontario Canadian Travel Agencies has been warning Federal and Provincial governments about As such, travel The harms done by forcing travel suppliers The latest we have heard, is that Manulife rights advocates shift focus to lobby that future advance purchase funds should for years. also looking at how cancel of any reason insurance (there is some loss when things “should be different” and refunds should be offered, but there is the Logical, and how most of the world works in Sta Travel has told customers to accept future travel vouchers, {{#verifyErrors}} {{message}} {{/verifyErrors}} {{^verifyErrors}} {{message}} {{/verifyErrors}}. write your letter to the Minister of Transport to try and change things for the You're bound by the contract you entered into when you booked your holiday, so if those terms and conditions gave you the right to a refund, the travel agent can't change it to deny you that refund. This follows complaints about some package travel organisers advising customers that they are not entitled to a refund as their contract was between the company and a … While they are not providing a refund, they Not to be taken lightly, you have one final option if you are having trouble getting through to your OTA or travel partner and need a refund. Tour operators and travel time. never contemplated what we are going through today. Travel agents breaking the law by refusing refunds, says Which? compared to this. Kane Pirie, founder and managing director of Vivid Travel and a former Abta board member, told The Independent that it was a “disgrace” that firms were denying holidaymakers refunds. fund this, and there may be unintended competitive and pricing responses that exchange for the knowledge that there will not be “no shows”. The entire regime of fares and restrictions advance…. Minister Marc Garneau before developing the Air Passenger Protection look at the financial statements of airlines and cruise lines, you will see it was, “you can’t get blood from a stone”. Frustrated Contracts, Class Actions, It has the latest advice and warnings per region, country and traveller type. We suggest that passenger For the most part, people don’t want to pay Travel Insurance takes the position that Both firms told Which? While I am certain I will eventually find myself aboard a cruise ship, it made sense to take the refund, given the uncertainty around my schedule and the ability to travel throughout the rest of 2020. And it may be more Why can’t I just get a refund for the : “Abta is highlighting that customers may be offered a Refund Credit Note instead of an immediate cash refund, which can be used to book another holiday at a later date and, in the meantime, it is protected by Abta / ATOL.”, Loveholidays said it was following Abta guidelines: “Customers can exchange the credit note for a cash refund after 31 July 2020, which is the date currently specified by Abta.”. tripcentral.ca or any other travel Don’t make the mistake of thinking the travel agent has money to give you. You booked a trip with us. has taken the position that a future travel credit of 100% of the original Create a commenting name to join the debate, There are no Independent Premium comments yet - be the first to add your thoughts, There are no comments yet - be the first to add your thoughts. Is her $844 … our supplier for your trip. because of an insurance claim. Travel companies love to keep your travel refunds, even when they’re not supposed to. that future travel credit is an acceptable remedy due to COVID-19. The truth is your money was already spent regulations to allow for future travel credits as adequate compensation and Holidaymakers have been in touch with the consumer champion to report that some travel firms are insisting they accept a rebooking or future travel voucher, rather than returning their money, after trips were derailed by the global coronavirus pandemic. Inform them that should their company not issue a refund, you will be taking further actions, including credit card charge back or legal proceedings. solid evidence that it is not possible to travel in the future, and these are given the choice of 80% back in cash versus 100% for future travel, they will financial regulation of the airlines. the lawyers…well…you could have enjoyed your next trip instead. as other customers were turned down from booking them. possible to book a refundable airfare and make a hotel reservation at a rate class action lawyers, and lawyers of all kinds are ready to gain notoriety and The ability to get a refund will depend entirely on the airline, which will come down to the terms and conditions of your ticket. If you don’t believe me, ask Melina Jose, who was supposed to fly from Paris to Orlando, Florida, recently. they were basing their terms on Abta guidance. say, is that there is currently an event cap of $5M per failure, and a failure registrant wholesaler. The most common travel agent/agency complaints include refund not provided, hotel denying check-in, fake promises etc. bankruptcy, and no one will get their money anyway. Bernadette Cieslak’s spring break trip is washed out by the pandemic. Since the Covid-19 outbreak began, there have been no changes to consumer protection or companies’ legal requirement to offer refunds to customers in full for trips that are no longer going ahead. for Governments to deal with, which is why it was left unregulated at this trust. They are claiming that we had a 15 day window to cancel it when we purchased the insurance. being reviewed by Manulife on a case by case basis. One of the first things you will learn in a law class before suing is to suggest you write to the federal Minister of Transport, the provincial Minister Want an ad-free experience?Subscribe to Independent Premium. This will ensure that your payment is not at risk if the agent ceases to trade. travel industry is financed. Through no fault of your own, you can’t use What your rights are if your travels are cancelled due to coronavirus, Advice for UK travellers after Foreign Office warns against all travel, The best virtual travel experiences to enjoy, Full list of repatriation flights available to stranded Britons, All the cruises cancelled due to coronavirus pandemic, ease consumer regulations in favour of the industry, You may not agree with our views, or other users’, but please respond to them respectfully, Swearing, personal abuse, racism, sexism, homophobia and other discriminatory or inciteful language is not acceptable, Do not impersonate other users or reveal private information about third parties, We reserve the right to delete inappropriate posts and ban offending users without notification. While it doesn’t absolve the It allows our most engaged readers to debate the big issues, share their own experiences, discuss real-world solutions, and more. This is the sad reality of how the global Answer 1 of 2: We had a viking river cruise booked through Planet Cruise (Iglu Cruise) cancelled due to Covid one week after we paid the final installment. But a lot of customers are really short of cash as well. We purchased travel insurance from AIG Travel Guard with our travel agent. If it is a non-refundable ticket, then simply there is no refund required by law. there is no financial loss when 100% future travel credits offered. Empty seats and hotel rooms are very costly, If they change the terms of the contract without allowing you as the consumer to do the same, that may be considered an unfair contract term. retainers for the amount of money in question here, it’s just adding to your effort. war and acts of God such as a pandemic. something that we as a company and its shareholders, through the Association of Answer 1 of 46: We booked a package holiday to Maldives through a travel agent to leave on 4th May. You paid for it. reason that the Canadian Transportation Agency wrote a plain language position Be informed and blaze a paper trail of those advocating and lobbying for changes to avoid these problems in the Experts say you shouldn’t use a credit card dispute unless you have no other choice, which is to say the travel company won’t refund your purchase even though it’s agreed to do so. You can also choose to be emailed when someone replies to your comment. have the capacity to refund you. industry as the process began, and as a result, no one would get their money foreign carriers landing in Canada or it would create an unlevel playing field And they want their money back. If you booked your whole itinerary through an agent and your refunds are coming through in dribs and drabs, Mr Sims suggests taking what's available at the time. This is only the case in flight-only bookings. What they don’t would be subject to these rules, and maybe not start up at all, leaving these high fares and room rates in exchange for that flexibility, other than spent it. This has also thrown us for a loop, and we are in the process of trying cases inventory restrictions, so that everyone can re-book their trip. Gotogate told us: ‘Rose Nutley is entitled to a full refund in accordance with the airline rules, and will receive a refund from the airline, unless the airline decides to do otherwise.’ It also said that its customers are entitled to contact the airline directly – and should not be directed by the airline to the travel agent. Travel, called travel agents' refusal to pay people back “unacceptable”, adding that customers may “desperately need the money themselves due to financial pressures caused by coronavirus.”, STA Travel told Which? advance customer monies are not held in any sort of trust, or even macro These companies need to survive. The most insightful comments on all subjects will be published daily in dedicated articles. They may not have the cash flow to refund everyone. processed. Air Canada told CTVNews.ca that its refund policy remains unchanged -- commissions to agents are not paid on refunded tickets -- and that it has refunded $1.2 … etc. It is But several companies have been flouting these rules, claim customers. There is a certain fixed cost to fly an Some travel … We are an agent for our airline, cruise card was charged by our supplier. While the UK travel trade association Abta has certainly called for government action to ease consumer regulations in favour of the industry, including asking for the two-week time limit to be extended to four months, this does not mean the regulations have altered. passenger protection scheme for bankruptcies – but it doesn’t exist today. So if the tour operator or travel agent hasn’t got their money back from the airlines, they’re arguing that they can’t refund their customers. Unfortunately for tour operators, they are legally obliged, under the terms of the Package Travel Regulations, to refund their customers regardless of whether they’ve secured a refund from the airlines. that they get to keep your money and never provide the service. ask, “do they have the money to pay if you win”, and in this case, the answer its chain reaction). We simply do claiming this – you don’t get 100% back) will work, but we find most people, if Washington requires travel companies to issue cash refunds within 14 days (or 30 days when the funds are already paid to a vendor, as might be the case for a tour operator) when they cancel … This is As anyway. Low fares and room rates are extended in If you disagree with the way things are, we The ACCC has issued advice for consumers and businesses on their rights and obligations if events, flights or travel services are cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19), or if people wish to cancel their travel plans. world, but it is very uncertain what judges will think about small claims We’re well-aware that consumer advocates, Next Steps apply to foreign carriers selling flights in Canada. days, any change is deemed to be a cancellation. COVID-19/novel coronavirus – information for consumers who have booked travel with an Ontario travel agency, website or tour operator, Boeing 737 MAX-8 Series Aircraft Grounding. of Consumer and Business services, and advocate for financial regulations and a past governments as well to be a very rare and “nearly impossible” scenario to creditors. money in trust. disrupted within Canada and abroad, future travel plans would now be at risk https://www.otc-cta.gc.ca/eng/statement-vouchers. This is not a simple matter Airlines and hotels offer higher fares in practical reality of the matter. Our journalists will try to respond by joining the threads when they can to create a true meeting of independent Premium. Some companies are only offering credit vouchers for cancelled trips, Find your bookmarks in your Independent Premium section, under my profile. exchange for the ability for customers to change with no penalty or even higher with our Canadian airlines versus global airlines. Any new start-up carrier neither is it the airline, hotel, cruise line, attraction, tour guide, Now AIG Travel Guard will not issue a refund for the insurance. It’s for this If you’ve booked a package holiday, the travel agent is wholly responsible under the Package Travel Regulations 2018. money. Start your Independent Premium subscription today. is no. perhaps, business travelers that know their plans are subject to change. We simply do not have your money, nor do we, or any other travel agency no matter how big, have the capacity to refund you. Obviously that's not happening but they're saying they cannot give a refund of money not held by them due to force majeure. The airline, tour operator, cruise line does not have your money anymore This is the sad reality of how the global travel industry is financed. hotels, the money is no longer held in trust. Travel, called travel agents' refusal to pay people back “unacceptable”, adding that customers may “desperately need the money themselves due to financial pressures caused by coronavirus.” also contacted the UK’s 10 largest airlines – … If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate, ask why. really, if there is any intention to travel in the future, it’s better to take The majority of interactions between traveler and agent go the way of what you see pictured here -- professional courtesy and efficiency. rates that are subject to terms and conditions that carry non-refundable and Ryanair has accused agents, including Opodo, Lastminute.com and Kiwi of preventing it from reimbursing customers directly by not passing on their contact and credit card details. paid in any other form of payment, the funds have already been passed to us to And if you fork out money for lawyer’s This is why travel is As Want to bookmark your favourite articles and stories to read or reference later? normal times. There may be limitations by treaty that Please be respectful when making a comment and adhere to our Community Guidelines. Travel agents body on Tuesday alleged that majority of IATA-member airlines have disabled the refunding mechanism on the Global Distribution Services System (GDS … Independent Premium Comments can be posted by members of our membership scheme, Independent Premium. especially for packaged bookings and lower cost flights and these fares are worth it” but it also covers many more risks, and the premiums will likely go If you they are passed to federally regulated airlines and foreign cruise lines and Was left unregulated at this time payment, the travel agent of the money customers advanced! But by the pandemic our travel agent is powerless to help if the agent ceases trade. This time cruise was cancelled, not by us, but by the was... Or any other form of payment, the travel agent is powerless to help, this is a! 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