I booked a package holiday two months ago and I have just been informed that the price has risen since the time of booking due to increased fuel charges. Is this allowed?
Yes, price increases are actually allowed, within certain limits. The Package Holidays and Travel Trade Act, 1995, deals specifically with holiday rights for consumers and is the only act of its kind. In relation to price changes, the act states that prices may only be changed in the event of variations in transport costs (including the cost of fuel), the level of taxes, fees and charges payable at airports and ports, or exchange rates which apply to your package. These charges, however, cannot be enforced within twenty days of departure. Remember that you can always ask for a refund if the price has been altered significantly.
I booked a holiday with a travel agent, and on the brochure it claimed that our accommodation had its own private pool. When we arrived, however, we were informed that the pool was no longer in use and had not been for quite some time. What are my rights?
The information that you were given in the brochure should have been accurate in its description of the accommodation. You were clearly misled by the information in the brochure and your expectations were not met. The information that is contained in the brochure is an important part of the contract and is legally binding. In this case, the tour operator is in breach of the contract and must offer some form of compensation. You should write a letter of complaint to the tour operator within 28 days of returning from holiday. If you are unhappy with the response of the complaint you can seek arbitration through the Irish Travel Agents’ Association or pursue the matter through the Small Claims court. The Small Claims Court will cost €25 and cover claims of up to €2,000.
I booked a package holiday a few months ago but I have now found out I cannot go. Can I transfer the holiday to someone else?
It is possible to transfer a package holiday to another person. You must, however, give the organiser of the holiday reasonable notice of the transfer, and the person must be able to satisfy all the conditions that are attached to the holiday. You should be able to find details of this within your contract. Both you and the person to whom you are transferring the holiday will be responsible for payment of either the holiday, or the remaining balance, whichever should be the case. You will also be responsible for any other fair and reasonable costs that may be incurred by the organiser as a result of the transfer.