On Fridaythat it agrees to provide a state guarantee for refund credit notes issued by Irish-licensed travel agents and tour operators. The state guarantee is for a special form of refund credit note for package holidays booked through Irish-registered travel agents and tour operators.
Under the EU Travel Package Directive, people who have had to cancel bookings due Covid-19 travel restrictions are entitled to a cash refund, and that entitlement will continue to apply. However, it is also the case that many travel agents and tour operators are having severe cash flow problems, and it is not clear that all of them will be able to meet all of their current cash refund obligations and at the same time be able to stay in business. The Government has therefore agreed to back a new refund credit note that travel agents and tour operators can offer their customers.
The refund credit note will work as follows:
1. It can be to the value of all of the refund due or part of the refund alongside part cash.
2. It will be issued with a future redeemable date, and on that date it can be exchanged for its cash value, or can be used to book a replacement holiday.
3. It will be State-guaranteed in the event that the travel agent or tour operator becomes insolvent.
EU legislation and national statutory instruments applicable to consumer rights in Ireland
|SECTOR||EUROPEAN UNION LEGISLATION||IRISH STATUTORY INSTRUMENT|
|TRANSPORT||Regulation (EC) 261/2004 on EU passenger rights travelling by air||⇒ S.I. No. 274 of 2005 European Communities (Compensation and Assistance to Air Passengers) (Denied Boarding, Cancellation or Long Delay of Flights) Regulations 2005|
|Regulation (EU) No 1177/2010 on EU Passengers rights travelling by sea and inland waterway||⇒ S.I. No. 394/2012 – European Union (Rights of Passengers when Travelling by Sea and Inland Waterways) Regulations 2012|
|Regulation (EU) No 181/2011 on EU passengers rights travelling by bus and coach||⇒ S.I. No. 152/2013 – European Union (Rights of Passengers when Travelling by Bus and Coach Transport) Regulations 2013|
|Regulation (EC) 1371/2007 on EU passenger rights when travelling by rail||⇒ S.I. No. 549/2014 – European Union (Rail Passengers’ Rights and Obligations) (Domestic Passenger Rail Services) (Renewal of Exemption) Regulations 2014|
|TRAVEL AND ACCOMMODATION||EU Directive 2015/2302 on package travel and linked travel arrangements||⇒ S.I. No. 80/2019 – European Union (Package Travel And Linked Travel Arrangements) Regulations 2019|
|Directive 2008/122/EC on the protection of consumers in respect of certain aspects of timeshare, long-term holiday product, resale and exchange contracts||⇒ S.I. No. 73/2011 – European Union (Protection of Consumers in respect of Timeshare, Long-term Holiday Product, Resale and Exchange Contracts) Regulations 2011|
|CAR RENTAL||Directive 2005/29/EC on unfair business-to-consumer commercial practices||⇒ Consumer Protection Act 2007|
|Directive 93/13/EEC on Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts||
⇒ S.I. No. 27/1995 – European Communities (Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts) Regulations, 1995
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