Is your holiday protected?
In relation to any claim, it’s essential to establish whether your holiday benefits from the protection of the Package Travel Regulations.
If your holiday contract falls within the definition of a ‘package’, you will be entitled to a refund of monies paid if you have not yet travelled or repatriation home if you are abroad. These obligations are imposed by the Regulations. The Regulations define a ‘package’ as the pre-arranged combination of at least two of the following components:
The definition includes a wide range of travel arrangements. Clearly traditional package holidays described in brochures are covered, but it would also include tailor-made holidays where you have selected separate components.
Non-flight inclusive holidays
Sales of package holidays must be financially protected. A package is defined as:
A prearranged combination of two or more travel components (transport, accommodation or other significant tourist services) when sold at an inclusive price and covering a period of more than 24 hours.
The travel organiser must also provide certain documentation and information to their customers before, during and after arranging the holiday and the sale.
Flight inclusive packages
Travel organisers arranging and selling flight inclusive holidays must hold a valid Air Travel Organisers ‘ Licence (ATOL) issued by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).
The travel organiser must provide an ATOL Certificate and provide certain other information to their customers before, during and after making the sale.
What to do in the event of a failure
In the event of any claim, ABTOT would need documentary proof of any payment made by you to the member travel organiser (e.g. invoices and receipts).
The ABTOT travel bond will not cover extra holiday costs such as travel insurance or car hire. In the event of a claim, please contact ABTOT in the first instance. Dependant on the merchant services provider, we may redirect you to make a claim under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974.
What should you do?
If you have any concerns about a holiday you have booked with an ABTOT member, or you are currently abroad and become aware that they have suffered financial failure, please initially try to speak to the travel organiser. Have a look at the organiser’s website to see if they have posted guidance on their out of hours contact details, or the details of their Administrator which might assist during this time.
If you’re unable to make contact with the travel organiser, please call ABTOT on 020 7065 5311 (during office hours Mon – Fri) or alternatively call our 24/7 helpline on 01702 811397 and advise you are a customer of an ABTOT protected travel company.
Complaints and Arbitration
If you have had a poor experience with an ABTOT travel member we suggest you contact them directly to discuss your complaint. If this does not resolve the matter, we offer an arbitration service to settle disputes between members and clients. This is administered and managed independently by Dispute Settlement Services Limited. You can contact them HERE.
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