In this latest article, our expert claims solicitors outline what a package holiday is and why this is important when making a claim for holiday illness compensation
Why is it important that my holiday was booked as a package?
The Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992, (‘Package Travel Regulations’), offer protection to package holiday consumers. The Regulations provide you with legal rights and impose obligations on the tour operator.
This means that if contaminated food, poor hygiene or unclean swimming pool water led to you suffer from sickness and diarrhoea on your holiday you may well be entitled to make a claim for holiday illness compensation against your tour operator.
A very important benefit of the Package Travel Regulations is that the claim you make for holiday illness or accident compensation can be pursued in the courts of England and Wales under English Law rather than having to pursue a claim against a foreign hotel which would involve issues of foreign law.
What is a package holiday?
This is the all-important question. Put simply, a package holiday is defined as a pre-arranged combination of elements containing at least 2 of the following:
- Other tourist services that form a significant part of the holiday (such as car hire)
When sold or offered for sale, package holidays must be done so at an all-inclusive price and when the contract is for more than 24 hours or has overnight accommodation.
The Regulations only apply to holidays sold or offered for sale in the UK.
Does it make a difference if I booked online or on the telephone?
Yes, it may do. Depending on how your holiday was booked and the information you were provided with at the time of booking, this can affect whether your holiday is defined as a package or not.
If you are in any doubt if your holiday is a package or not, we would always advise that you contact your holiday provider for clarification. You should ask them ‘is my holiday a package holiday which is protected by the Package Travel Regulations 1992?’
If the answer is ‘yes’ you have peace of mind.
If I booked accommodation and flights can I make a claim?
Over the past few years, we have seen an increase in holidays offered as “dynamic packages,” or “flight plus accommodation”. Although, these may well look like (and even sound like) a package holiday, in our experience, they are often not.
The reasoning behind this is as follows: rather than being offered at an inclusive price, the different elements such as flights and hotel accommodation (usually with different providers) are priced separately which means that you have in effect a separate contract for each of the holiday elements. This should be made clear to you at the time of booking.
What this means is that, in most cases, you cannot make a claim against your travel agent or travel organiser because they are only responsible for arranging the services. They are not responsible for the quality of the services.
Any claim you may wish to make would, again in most cases, have to be made against the actual supplier of the services i.e. you would have to bring a claim against the hotel and pursue it in the country where the hotel is located.
This is a huge disadvantage when things go wrong. Our advice would always be to purchase a holiday which is a package holiday protected by the Package Travel Regulations.
Where to turn for further help
In the first instance, your travel provider should be able to tell you if your holiday is a package or not.
For further information and advice, the expert team at Your Holiday Claims helpline can be contacted on 0330 100 2851.
Was your package holiday ruined by illness?
Every year, the dedicated team at Your Holiday Claims helps British holidaymakers claim the compensation they deserve in hassle-free, no win no fee settlements.
As long as your stay was booked as a package and was within the last three years, you too could be eligible to make a risk-free claim for thousands.
Our specialist solicitors have over 50 years’ experience in travel law and have developed an unrivalled claim success rate to ensure that you receive the maximum compensation.
To discuss your case with our experts, call 0330 100 2851 now.
Or, complete our quick online contact form and an experienced holiday illness lawyer will be in touch shortly.