One consequence of the new travel package for the travel industry may be that customers have to wait a year if they want money back for canceled trips.
At a press conference on Tuesday, Business Minister Simon Kollerup (S) announced an aid package for the much-needed travel industry totaling DKK 725 million.
As part of the political agreement on the relief package, travel agents will be temporarily allowed to issue gift cards – so-called vouchers – to customers with canceled packages due to coronavirus. As it is now, customers are otherwise entitled to receive the money back immediately.
That part of the agreement is not enthusiastic about at the Consumer Council Think.
We think it is the wrong solution chosen. When a consumer buys an item that is not being delivered, the consumer has a basic requirement to get the money back, says Mads Reinholdt, director of the Consumer Council Think, to TV 2.
With the agreement on the relief package, the Danish politicians have undertaken to support a voucher scheme for the travel industry throughout the EU.
– If a voucher scheme is made possible through the EU, the consumer will be given a voucher valid for 18 months on canceled trips due to corona , the Ministry of Industry writes about the scheme, which must be approved in the EU before it enters into force.
If the voucher is not used after one and a half years, the customer will automatically receive the money back. However, the customer can also choose to get the money back after one year.
A bear service
At the Consumer Council Think you do not believe the agreement is good – neither for the customers nor for the travel industry.
– Moreover, it is to make the travel industry a bear service. Because we run the risk of consumer confidence in the industry disappearing, especially when it is implemented retroactively, which means that people now and again cannot get money back for travel purchased earlier this year. And many consumers will naturally be reluctant to buy travel when the conditions are so uncertain, says Mads Reinholdt.
The agreement is retroactive and will also apply to journeys canceled in March and April due to coronavirus.
Travel Guarantee Fund pays back money
The Travel Guarantee Fund states right now on its website that if you have purchased a package tour from a company that is a member of the Travel Guarantee Fund, you can get the money back if the trip is canceled due to the outbreak of coronavirus. However, the fund’s website was last updated on May 7 – before the new agreement.
The fund is currently expecting to be able to repay the money in early June for travel canceled due to coronavirus during the period from March 13 through April 13. However, the Travel Guarantee Fund’s website encourages customers to exercise patience.
The Travel Guarantee Fund is currently unable to disclose when customers can recover money for travel canceled due to coronavirus from April 14 through May 10.