When is it possible to withdraw from the package travel?
A consumer may withdraw from a contract due to the occurrence of unavoidable and extraordinary circumstances at the place of the package travel or its immediate vicinity, which have a significant impact on the implementation of the package travel or the transport of travellers to their destination. For example an epidemic is such a situation. In this case, the consumer is not charged with the costs of withdrawing from the contract. However, he is not entitled to any compensation or redress from the tour operator. The operator must return the money paid to the consumer within 14 days from the date on which the declaration of withdrawal has been successfully submitted. However, please note: the provisions adopted in connection with the epidemic require that the declaration is effectively submitted only 180 days after the traveller notified the office of withdrawal (Article 15k of the COVID-19 Act). Instead of returning the money, the office may offer the consumer a different trip or a voucher, but the consumer does not have to use this option.
The trip was cancelled due to the coronavirus. Are we eligible for a refund?
Yes. Pursuant to Art. 47 section 5 (2) of the Act on package travel and linked travel arrangements, if the tour operator is unable to perform the contract due to unavoidable and extraordinary circumstances, it may terminate it and reimburse all costs incurred by the traveller. The traveller is not entitled to additional compensation or redress. However, the tour operator must inform the traveller about the termination of the package travel contract immediately before the start of the package travel. The tour operator must return the money paid to the consumer within 14 days from the date of termination of the contract. Notice! The regulations passed in connection with the epidemic require that the package travel contract is terminated only 180 days after the tour operator notified the consumer about the termination of the contract.
The tour has been cancelled and the tour operator refuses to refund the money by offering a voucher, rescheduling the tour, etc.
If the tour operator has cancelled the trip, it is obliged to refund the money. If the tour operator proposes a different solution (a voucher or a different trip), the traveller may or may not agree to it. This can be an opportunity to get a good deal. If the consumer prefers to get the money back, he does not have to accept the offer. However, he will get the refund only in six months, because the regulations adopted in connection with the epidemic require that the package travel contract is terminated only 180 days after the information about the cancellation of the event was actually communicated to the consumer. After that, the office has 14 days to return the money.
Of course, these are just a few examples. However, it is worth remembering to consult the Information Centre for Foreigners in problematic situations – this is what we are for.