Holidaymakers should accept vouchers for cancelled holidays – or millions of Brits will lose trips completely – The Sun

HOLIDAYMAKERS who have had their holidays cancelled should accept credit notes, or they risk losing their holidays entirely.

ABTA has warned that holiday providers could go bankrupt if forced to offer refunds to travellers, meaning millions of trips could be cancelled.

The travel industry body is urging the government to introduce temporary changes to rules that govern holiday refunds, by extending the window for refund credit notes as a short-term alternative to cash refunds.

The current rules allow passengers to be given a refund within 14 days of their cancelled holidays.

However, with holidays being cancelled on mass scale, as well as airlines delaying refunds and hotels closing, tour operators are unable to do this.

Mark Tanzer, ABTA Chief Executive, explained: "We know the Government has a lot to manage with the current crisis, but its failure to make these temporary changes to refund rules defies logic and is leaving the consumer in no-man’s land.

"The rules around 14-day refunds were never designed for the mass cancellation of holidays, which we’re now seeing as result of Government measures to contain the pandemic."

He warns that the taxpayer could be forced to pick up the £4.5 billion refund bill if changes are not made.

He continued: "It’s important to reiterate, this is about supporting businesses through an entirely unforeseeable and short-term cashflow crunch – customers will not lose their right to a refund, and their money is not at risk."

The new regulations would follow other countries in Europe who have already introduced temporary changes to regulations on refunds.

The European Commission has updated its guidance on the Package Travel Directive (PTD) in relation to customer claims refunds.

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