News

Government Agrees to Provide a State-Guarantee for Refund Credit Notes Issued by Irish Licensed Travel Agents and Tour Operators

Government Agrees to Provide a State-Guarantee for Refund Credit Notes Issued by Irish Licensed Travel Agents and Tour Operators

The Government has agreement to provide a State guarantee for a special form of refund credit note for package holidays booked through Irish registered travel agents and tour operators.

Minister for Transport Shane Ross said: “The travel restrictions imposed across the world in response to the Covid-19 pandemic have led to the widespread cancellation of holidays during March, April and May, with many people having to postpone holiday, wedding and honeymoon plans. Under the EU Travel Package Directive, people who have had to cancel such bookings because of the Covid-19 travel are entitled to a cash refund, and that entitlement will continue to apply. However, it is also the case that many travel agents and tour operators are having severe cash flow problems, and it is not clear that all of them will be able to meet all of their current cash refund obligations and at the same time be able to stay in business.

“The Government has therefore agreed to back a new refund credit note that travel agents and tour operators can offer their customers.”

The refund credit note will work as follows:

1. It can be to the value of all of the refund due or part of the refund alongside part cash.

2. It will be issued with a future redeemable date, and on that date it can be exchanged for its cash value, or can be used to book a replacement holiday.

3. It will be State-guaranteed in the event that the travel agent or tour operator becomes insolvent.

Minister Ross added: “These are very difficult days for our tourism industry and for the many travel agencies and tour operators who have seen their businesses face near collapse in recent months. However, it is also financially challenging for people who booked holidays and are entitled to a refund of their investment. The Refund Credit Note aims to strike a balance between preventing sector-wide bankruptcy (with associated immediate job losses) and consumer rights.”

View Comments (1)

1 Comment

  1. Neil Steedman

    May 9, 2020 at 6:21 am

    They took a month coming – it was on 7th April that Minister Ross said that: “This is an urgent matter that requires a speedy response” – but the Government-guaranteed Refund Credit Notes that the ITAA had campaigned for have finally arrived. It is a reasonable balance between consumers’ rights to refunds and the need for financial survival for travel agents and tour operators – although there may be some ‘lively discussions’ with some clients as to how much is refunded now and how much is by way of credit note!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

News

NEIL STEEDMAN has been a trade journalist, copywriter, editor and proofreader for 52 years, and News & Features Editor for ‘Irish Travel Trade News’ for the past 42 years.

More in News

Aer Lingus announces new measures for the safety of Customers and Staff 

Michael FloodMay 29, 2020

Silversea launches “Virtual Visits ” with travel partners

Michael FloodMay 29, 2020

CAR Renews 92 Travel Agent Licences, Nine Still Pending

Neil SteedmanMay 29, 2020

Win a Holiday for Two in Lanzarote with Blue Insurance and Aqua Suites

Neil SteedmanMay 28, 2020

Join Amazing Thailand’s Live Webinars

Neil SteedmanMay 26, 2020

Spain reopens for Irish visitors from 1st July

Michael FloodMay 26, 2020

Hertz Files for Bankruptcy in USA and Canada

Neil SteedmanMay 26, 2020

Emirates introduces Complimentary Hygiene Kits for every passenger

Michael FloodMay 26, 2020

The Travel Corporation Overhauls Hygiene Standards

Neil SteedmanMay 26, 2020

Copyright © 2019 Belgrave Group Limited, C4 Nutgrove Office Park, Nutgrove Avenue, Rathfarnham, Dublin 14, Ireland