FIA sees room for improvement in Package Travel Directive
Publication date: 12 March 2014
On 11 March, MEPs voted to update the Package Travel Directive with mixed results for consumers. Greater assistance requirements, a 5-night hotel stay for unforeseeable delays and contact information by phone and email will bring some new and better protections. However, the FIA sees areas that clearly could have improved the legislation, specifically through an obligation on package operators to notify passengers of their rights and a more inclusive understanding of package travel.
“Although we appreciate the efforts made to improve package travel for consumers, MEPs missed the opportunity to make a legislation that is future proof by limiting the definition of what ‘package travel’ entails,” said Jacob Bangsgaard, Director General of FIA Region I. He continued, “We are also concerned that consumers will not be aware of their rights as there is no obligation on operators to share this information. Therefore the EU must foresee another method by which this can be communicated to the public.”
The original legislation was created in 1990 and was due for an update. MEPs extended the responsibilities of operators by insisting on a free method to contact if a traveller has a complaint, via email, and giving travellers up to three years to make a claim.
However, the legislation gives operators the right to increase prices by up to 8% from listed prices after booking, which can mean the difference between an affordable trip and one that is too expensive for many travellers.
Notes to editors:
FIA Region I Policy Brief on the package travel Directive
Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) Region I office
FIA Region I represents 112 Touring and Motoring Clubs in Europe, the Middle East and Africa from its Brussels office, which total more than 38 million members. The FIA represents the interest of these members as motorists, public transport users, pedestrians and tourists. The FIA’s primary goal is to secure a mobility that is safe, affordable, sustainable and efficient. With these aims in mind, our work focuses on Road Safety, Consumer Protection, Environmental Protection, and the promotion of Sustainable Motoring.
Communications Manager, FIA Region I
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