Teletext Holidays ordered to pay back £7m in cancelled holiday refunds
If you were not aware of this before Covid-19, you may well be now- if your travel company cancels your package holiday for any reason, it is required by law to provide a full refund within 14 days.
The same applies if you booked a flight through a holiday company, as long as the flight was departing from or arriving in an EU country or the UK, or it was with an EU or UK airline.
Unfortunately, many people have been left waiting considerably longer for refunds during the Pandemic as many travel firms have cancelled flights and/or holidays but due to the cashflow problems that they have found themselves with, they have not made the refunds - and this is a contravention of Consumer Protection Law.
Since Covid struck, The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has had to write to more than 100 package holiday firms reminding them that they are obliged to act within the Law and provide these refunds.
Recently, it has become apparent that Teletext Holidays owes around £7M to customers whose holidays have been cancelled due to Covid-19.
A number of customers have made complaints about Teletext Holidays as they were promised refunds for a certain date but these were not received and then a different date was given.
The CMA had publicly stated that it 'takes very seriously the ongoing failure of Teletext Holidays to meet its obligations'.
Further, the CMA had threatened to 'pursue this case in Court' in the absence of a commitment from Teletext Holidays to make the refunds without further delay.
For their part, Teletext Holidays said that they were 'extremely disappointed with the CMA's announcement' and say that they 'have consistently stated their commitment to refund all customers as quickly and as practically as possible'.
Fortunately for all concerned, the CMA has very recently confirmed that an agreement has now been reached with Teletext Holidays regarding the refunds, which will apparently all be made by 31 August 2021. Bearing in mind that date is still some weeks away, and the fact that the commitment to repay relates to all customers that Teletext Holidays 'accepts are owed a refund', this story may yet rumble on for some time.
While it is hard not to have some sympathy for travel companies, as they have been hit as hard as anyone by the Pandemic, it is one thing to have a holiday cancelled in the knowledge that you will receive a swift refund, but quite another to be left not only without a holiday, but also unsure as to if and when a refund will be received.