The “Travel Vouchers” will have a duration of 30 months. Parliament, with an amendment to the “Milleproroghe”, and accepting the requests of the trade associations in the sector, has again arranged for the extension of a further 6 months of travel vouchers issued by travel agencies, tour operators, tourist-accommodation facilities and by vectors.
According to consumer associations, this is to the detriment and insult of those who have “lent” money to agencies and structures and have not been able to get them back.
“The legislation on vouchers at the time was accused in various fora of not respecting European standards – he recalls Mina Busi, president of Adiconsum Bergamo – which provide for the passenger’s decision on how to use the amount paid for a trip not taken, and the Commission itself, Enac and Antitrust considered them illegal. But the question, between complaints and heated discussions did not change. The result is that the 12 months in which the traveler has lent money to operators without interest have become 30… and the story is not over yet ”.
These are vouchers issued as reimbursement for travel, tourist packages, school trips and educational trips not used due to the Covid-19 pandemic. During the first lockdown, millions of consumers had to give up their holidays due to preventive measures due to the Coronavirus. For the structures where they had booked, the possibility of providing vouchers valid for 12 months was provided by law, as an alternative to the return of the amount already paid.
Upon expiry, if the vouchers had not been used, the reimbursement to consumers would have had to take place. The extension of the validity of the vouchers was then extended first to 18 and then to 24 months.
The extension of the validity of vouchers issued by accommodation facilities or travel agencies, for example, concerns air, rail, sea, inland or land transport contracts; residence contracts; stipulated tourist package contracts; school trips and educational trips
“While we are hoping for an exit from the pandemic and a recovery of the tourism sector, all consumers who had accrued (perhaps after 2 years) the right to a refund of the amounts paid, see the moment of the long-awaited reimbursement move away. A further penalty for consumers. The policy of support for businesses and tourism operators must be strengthened, to favor the economic and employment recovery of our country – concludes Busi -, without burdening consumers, who today are once again penalized by the provision “.