Government urged to reimburse Brits struggling to get refunds for cancelled holidays – The Sun

The Government should step in and reimburse consumers who are struggling to get refunds for cancelled holidays, a leading travel industry body has said.

UK consumers are protected under European laws which state that they should receive full cash refunds within 14 days for cancelled package holidays.

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But many cash-strapped travel firms are not making payouts within the allotted timeframe.

In some cases, that is because they are waiting to receive back the money that they had passed on to airlines for flights.

Brits have paid up to £4.5 billion for holidays that have been cancelled, travel trade body ABTA reckons.

Its CEO Mark Tanzer said that if the Government is not going to relax the 14-day rule, then it should step in to pay some of the refunds itself as “it’s in nobody’s interests for travel companies to fail at this point”.

He told MPs that having to pay back all the money owed within current time limits would “knock over an awful lot of travel companies”.

Giving evidence to the Commons Transport Select Committee, he said: “This isn’t crying wolf, this is what will happen because there is no cash there until it comes back from the suppliers.”

He told the MPs: “The way to save travel companies and jobs is for the Government to intervene directly at some point for a properly administered system, to say ‘We will prepay those refunds where the company can’t pay it’.”

Mr Tanzer claimed this would have several advantages over a firm going out of business, such as the company being able to administer the refund and repay the Government at a later date.

It would also ensure customers receive the money they are owed.

Last week the competition watchdog said it had received thousands of complaints from people who were not being offered the refunds they offered.

It threatening to take action against offending firms.


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