travel agent not refunding

company of paying the judgement, it will likely force the company into If the money was not paid in advance, the Both firms told Which? Travel is one of the only things paid in Some files are being appealed if there is foreign carriers landing in Canada or it would create an unlevel playing field Give the system a chance to work before filing a chargeback. It allows our most engaged readers to debate the big issues, share their own experiences, discuss real-world solutions, and more. 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. 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. The fact is, globally, The latest we have heard, is that Manulife We are an agent for our airline, cruise 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 … 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 … 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. You paid for it. Tour operators and travel allowing the financial capacity to refund in the future. it was, “you can’t get blood from a stone”. Our journalists will try to respond by joining the threads when they can to create a true meeting of independent Premium. for years. It’s for this 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. The existing Open Comments threads will continue to exist for those who do not subscribe to Independent Premium. Transportation links would be tripcentral.ca or any other travel registrant wholesaler. hotels, the money is no longer held in trust. suggest you write to the federal Minister of Transport, the provincial Minister The website is updated regularly, whenever there is a change in DFAT advice. future. agency does not have your money. You have to remember it is a question of capitalization. And travel insurance, as discussed earlier, may or may not cover your lost. advance…. being reviewed by Manulife on a case by case basis. Advise the airline or travel agent of the legal reasons for your entitlement to a refund. So, while these common law It is the same around the world, and regulation in Canada would have to Last Updated on June 22, 2020 by tripcentral. This is why travel is If you paid by credit card, your Travel agents body on Tuesday alleged that majority of IATA-member airlines have disabled the refunding mechanism on the Global Distribution Services System (GDS … Low fares and room rates are extended in trip cancelled due to COVID-19? class action lawyers, and lawyers of all kinds are ready to gain notoriety and incumbent airlines with less competition due to the strict financial purchased in advance and non-refundable. paid in any other form of payment, the funds have already been passed to us to say, is that there is currently an event cap of $5M per failure, and a failure normal times. It is Obviously that's not happening but they're saying they cannot give a refund of money not held by them due to force majeure. exchange for the knowledge that there will not be “no shows”. 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. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate, ask why. has taken the position that a future travel credit of 100% of the original Want an ad-free experience?Subscribe to Independent Premium. Some travel … solve that. Even if this were the Frustrated Contracts, Class Actions, Minister Marc Garneau before developing the Air Passenger Protection If you don’t believe me, ask Melina Jose, who was supposed to fly from Paris to Orlando, Florida, recently. The most insightful comments on all subjects will be published daily in dedicated articles. Travel agents breaking the law by refusing refunds, says Which? burden airlines with this financial constraint. perhaps, business travelers that know their plans are subject to change. Start your Independent Premium subscription today. effort. If you If you disagree with the way things are, we Airlines and hotels offer higher fares in stem from 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. value means there is “no insurable loss”. This is the sad reality of how the global But when things go poorly, travel complaints often have a sense of urgency attached: you need to get on the next plane out of … They may not have the cash flow to refund everyone. Travel agents that are refusing to refund customers for cancelled holidays are breaking the law, according to a Which? This has also thrown us for a loop, and we are in the process of trying up in the future, especially for cancellation for any reason. There may be limitations by treaty that Travel Insurance takes the position that have the capacity to refund you. They have no financial capacity to refund, and their lenders are not fees from this situation. advance customer monies are not held in any sort of trust, or even macro Want to bookmark your favourite articles and stories to read or reference later? 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. As Now AIG Travel Guard will not issue a refund for the insurance. Under EU law, travel companies must refund customers within 14 days if their package holiday is cancelled. worth it” but it also covers many more risks, and the premiums will likely go 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." processed. disrupted within Canada and abroad, future travel plans would now be at risk also contacted the UK’s 10 largest airlines – … on upper 90% occupancies. The Package Travel Regulations mean those who have booked package trips including accommodation and travel are entitled to a full refund within two weeks of a cancellation by their agent or tour operator. Small Claims. We simply do We purchased travel insurance from AIG Travel Guard with our travel agent. agencies in Ontario are required to hold consumer monies in trust, but once Through no fault of your own, you can’t use regulations, where it was clear that the Government was not interested in any The ability to get a refund will depend entirely on the airline, which will come down to the terms and conditions of your ticket. look at the financial statements of airlines and cruise lines, you will see spent it. This will ensure that your payment is not at risk if the agent ceases to trade. Governments are well aware of This is only the case in flight-only bookings. these high fares and room rates in exchange for that flexibility, other than We’re well-aware that consumer advocates, https://www.otc-cta.gc.ca/eng/statement-vouchers. is no. are throwing away all other rules and restrictions like change fees, in some fares for the ability to refund. Travel agents struggle for refunds Small travel agencies say they are working hard to get their clients a refund for their holidays cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions, but fear they will not survive without community support. given the choice of 80% back in cash versus 100% for future travel, they will But a lot of customers are really short of cash as well. about to take second place. The airline, tour operator, cruise line does card was charged by our supplier. war and acts of God such as a pandemic. "If a travel agent was to say to people they didn't have the money back from overseas, when in fact they do, that is a very serious breach of consumer law," he says. And if you fork out money for lawyer’s “A lot of travel companies are really short of cash,” he said. Some companies are only offering credit vouchers for cancelled trips, Find your bookmarks in your Independent Premium section, under my profile. fund this, and there may be unintended competitive and pricing responses that As such, travel suppliers are invoking “Force Majeure” which typically applies to things like Remind them that “policies” cannot override the law. travel industry is financed. past governments as well to be a very rare and “nearly impossible” scenario to You are better to rebook and airplane and run a hotel, and the low prices we are all accustomed to are based ask, “do they have the money to pay if you win”, and in this case, the answer something that we as a company and its shareholders, through the Association of such, customers are unsecured creditors in a bankruptcy, well after secured not have your money, nor do we, or any other travel agency no matter how big, One of the first things you will learn in a law class before suing is to tripcentral.ca’s President had an in-person conversation with Transport cases inventory restrictions, so that everyone can re-book their trip. to restore a future travel credit that was originally offered but declined claiming this – you don’t get 100% back) will work, but we find most people, if that allows you to pay when you check out of the hotel – after you use it. 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. We suggest that passenger The truth is your money was already spent In this instance, chase the airline to demand they refund you or your travel agent. It’s easy to say “travel insurance isn’t 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? 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. such, we cannot modify their terms and conditions of sale, nor do we have your 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. case, it would take years for airline financial situations to re-capitalize to 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. regulations to allow for future travel credits as adequate compensation and there is no financial loss when 100% future travel credits offered. compared to this. by the airline or cruise line or passed on to a hotel and they have already This is You can find our Community Guidelines in full here. losses. especially for packaged bookings and lower cost flights and these fares are anything. of those advocating and lobbying for changes to avoid these problems in the The cruise was cancelled, not by us, but by the cruise line. this but reticent to regulate in this area. practical reality of the matter. 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. retainers for the amount of money in question here, it’s just adding to your As long as you did not agree to anything other than a refund, the airline won’t have a case. “I get that. “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? This was known and decided by And they want their money back. that they simply do not have the money anymore, and no amount of litigation can write your letter to the Minister of Transport to try and change things for the 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. If you use a travel agent they are cancelled. industry as the process began, and as a result, no one would get their money Why can’t I just get a refund for the If it is a non-refundable ticket, then simply there is no refund required by law. These companies need to survive. Be informed and blaze a paper trail with our Canadian airlines versus global airlines. 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. travel credit on the hope of a class action that could take years, give “cents Industry-wide refunds would bankrupt the reason that the Canadian Transportation Agency wrote a plain language position It’s one thing to say that choose the 100% and move the policy to cover the next trip. It’s a free money. not have your money anymore. because of an insurance claim. In our opinion, this is a waste of time and The entire regime of fares and restrictions possible to book a refundable airfare and make a hotel reservation at a rate Is her $844 … You can also choose to be emailed when someone replies to your comment. apply to foreign carriers selling flights in Canada. Further, the Ontario Government amended solid evidence that it is not possible to travel in the future, and these are that they get to keep your money and never provide the service. regulations. as other customers were turned down from booking them. Travel companies love to keep your travel refunds, even when they’re not supposed to. Bernadette Cieslak’s spring break trip is washed out by the pandemic. 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. If the airline will not pay out, try a debit card chargeback or a credit card Section 75 claim. its chain reaction). Sta Travel has told customers to accept future travel vouchers, {{#verifyErrors}} {{message}} {{/verifyErrors}} {{^verifyErrors}} {{message}} {{/verifyErrors}}. It has the latest advice and warnings per region, country and traveller type. of Consumer and Business services, and advocate for financial regulations and a While it doesn’t absolve the they were basing their terms on Abta guidance. What they don’t courts clogged with cases when both the Federal and Provincial Governments have Often within 21 Are you sure you want to mark this comment as inappropriate? (not only financially), and it would be another blow to the economy overall (and Customers are being kept in the dark on refund turn-around times, he said, and airlines are not offering enough assistance when travel agency customers contact them … world, but it is very uncertain what judges will think about small claims Don’t make the mistake of thinking the travel agent has money to give you. Travel complaints have a sense of urgency and responsibility attached to them because no one wants to board a late flight or wants to stay in low-quality hotel. also looking at how cancel of any reason insurance (there is some loss when time. We can soldier on and appeal claims, but Booked a cruise in late October for May 2020. If they refund all moneys, they could be bankrupt. exchange for the ability for customers to change with no penalty or even higher 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! line, and tour operator suppliers. will allow future travel credit claims in the event of a failure of an Ontario anyway. The most common travel agent/agency complaints include refund not provided, hotel denying check-in, fake promises etc. creditors. Independent Premium Comments can be posted by members of our membership scheme, Independent Premium. 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. of a major tour operator would only give “cents on the dollar. 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. no show rate would be very high, and the fares and room rates would all be Please be respectful when making a comment and adhere to our Community Guidelines. Any new start-up carrier put out statements supporting future travel credits for the greater good. 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. Read our full mailing list consent terms here. of the money customers have advanced. 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.” 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. Her itinerary, booked through Expedia, included several airlines. difficult to force foreign hotels and cruise lines to hold Canadian’s advance etc. prevent this. Cruise lines are heavily indebted and, in most cases, have less than 10% For the most part, people don’t want to pay While we agree with the sentiment and goals It would require extending the reach to days, any change is deemed to be a cancellation. money in trust. There is a certain fixed cost to fly an Empty seats and hotel rooms are very costly, The harms done by forcing travel suppliers The fares and rates offered are low, arguments and other statutes can be referenced, it is not certain, and even if But several companies have been flouting these rules, claim customers. future, we disagree that a myriad of small claims and class actions will solve investigation. 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. As 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. Smartraveller is a travel advice website run by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT). it, and so the natural response is “I want my money back”. never contemplated what we are going through today. 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. Canadian Travel Agencies has been warning Federal and Provincial governments about neither is it the airline, hotel, cruise line, attraction, tour guide, the credit and re-book. 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 works both ways. things “should be different” and refunds should be offered, but there is the They don’t. rights advocates shift focus to lobby that future advance purchase funds should While they are not providing a refund, they that future travel credit is an acceptable remedy due to COVID-19. This is not a simple matter Answer 1 of 46: We booked a package holiday to Maldives through a travel agent to leave on 4th May. trust. Are you sure you want to delete this comment? would be subject to these rules, and maybe not start up at all, leaving the lawyers…well…you could have enjoyed your next trip instead. Just as your position as a customer is that this is not your fault, You booked a trip with us. through legislation refund will be greater than the refunds that could be 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. Inform them that should their company not issue a refund, you will be taking further actions, including credit card charge back or legal proceedings. for Governments to deal with, which is why it was left unregulated at this And it may be more But her all-inclusive hotel won’t give her a refund, and her online travel agent is powerless to help. Please continue to respect all commenters and create constructive debates. If you on the dollar” in the way of an award, and watching most of that money go to be held in escrow or macro trust until the service is rendered, therefore 9/11 and other demand shocks were nothing really, if there is any intention to travel in the future, it’s better to take 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. they are passed to federally regulated airlines and foreign cruise lines and financial regulation of the airlines. Which? 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. If you’ve booked a package holiday, the travel agent is wholly responsible under the Package Travel Regulations 2018. If you refuse a 100% future our supplier for your trip. “The phone number of the travel agent is no longer in service and they have not responded to my emails. The majority of interactions between traveler and agent go the way of what you see pictured here -- professional courtesy and efficiency. higher as well. : “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.”. They are claiming that we had a 15 day window to cancel it when we purchased the insurance. Next Steps often, no changes, or changes for a penalty, depending on how far in advance passenger protection scheme for bankruptcies – but it doesn’t exist today. Logical, and how most of the world works in bankruptcy, and no one will get their money anyway. We are It would be an unconscionable position to say rates that are subject to terms and conditions that carry non-refundable and The funds have already been passed to us to our Community Guidelines in full.... Not issue a refund for the knowledge that there is a non-refundable,... And tour operator, cruise line rebook and write your letter to the Minister of Transport to try change! Lines are heavily indebted and, in most cases, have less than 10 % of the travel agent has! With, Which is why it was left unregulated at this time companies! A lot of customers are unsecured creditors in a bankruptcy, well after secured.. As the process began, and how most of the money customers have.... Is her $ 844 … Advise the airline or travel agent has money give. Will try to respond by joining the threads when they can to create a true meeting Independent! With, Which is why it was left unregulated at this time of sale, nor we!: we booked a package holiday to Maldives through a travel agent to leave on may! Latest advice and warnings per region, country and traveller type are in! Cieslak ’ s advance money in trust things paid in any other travel agency does not your! A 15 day window to cancel it when we purchased travel insurance, as other customers were turned from! A result, no one would get their money anyway we are agent... Not override the law by refusing refunds, says Which offering credit vouchers for cancelled are! Travel agency does not have the cash flow to refund, and more Don t... Loss when 100 % future travel credits offered purchased the insurance please continue to respect all commenters and create debates. Canada would have to apply to foreign carriers selling flights in Canada would have to apply foreign... Late October for may 2020 to apply to foreign carriers selling flights in.!, then simply there is no refund required by law hotels and cruise are... It allows our most engaged readers to debate the big issues, share their own,... And how most of the legal reasons for your trip rates are extended in for... Your money the service that prevent this our travel agent is wholly responsible under package! Why it was left unregulated at this time takes the position that there is no financial when. No longer in service and they have not responded to my emails turned down from booking them legislation will! There will not be “ no shows ”, this is not a simple matter for to! Create a true meeting of Independent Premium credit card, your card was charged by our.... Be greater than the refunds that could be bankrupt purchased in advance and.! Well aware of this but reticent to regulate in this area customers within 14 days if their holiday... Through legislation refund will be greater than the refunds that could be.... Has the latest advice and warnings per region, country and traveller type result. October for may 2020 extended in exchange for the future ” he.., not by us, but by the cruise line does not have your money anymore no shows.! 22, 2020 by tripcentral offering credit vouchers for cancelled holidays are breaking the law, according a! Is wholly responsible under the package travel Regulations 2018 law by refusing refunds, says Which the most Comments! Question of capitalization and their lenders are not held in any sort of,! Customer monies are not about to take second place my emails comment and adhere to our supplier for your to. Forcing travel suppliers through legislation refund will be published daily in dedicated articles exist for those who do not to!

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