Compensation for damage from a ruined holiday is the discomfort brought by the failure of a planned holiday, it is that interdiction to the mental and physical well-being that the tourist suffers from not having been able to enjoy all or part of the holiday as an opportunity for pleasure, recreation and rest.
Often, however, tourists, unmotivated by the repeated refusals by Tour Operators, by the fear of having to undergo further disbursements for legal assistance, or by the procedural delays, tend not to assert the rights that both European and national legislation recognizes them.
What legislation is applied?
Damage from ruined holidays originates from directive 90/314/EEC, concerning travel, holidays and “all inclusive” circuits. Italy has implemented the directive mentioned through Legislative Decree 111/1995 concerning travel, holidays and all-inclusive circuits only through the introduction of Legislative Decree 79/2011 (Tourism Code).
In which cases is there damage from a ruined holiday?
- the causes which can give rise to damage from a ruined holiday are to be found in the non-fulfilment or inexact execution of the services which form the object of the tourist package;
- the non-fulfilment must not be of little importance;
- the damage from a ruined holiday corresponds to the unnecessarily wasted holiday time and the unrepeatability of the lost opportunity.
It should be noted that failure to fulfill and / or incorrect performance of the services covered by the contract can be detected whenever the holiday does not correspond to the tourist’s expectations, aroused not only by the advertising and information brochures, but also by the contract itself, which must always be drawn up in the written form.
The responsible towards the consumer – tourist is the organizer who prepared the travel package purchased by the former (directly or through a travel agency, which plays the role of the intermediary in the sale) and who is required to compensate the damages which the consumer suffered for not being able to enjoy the holiday period!
By way of example, some of the cases in which the organizer is required to respond are listed:
- the hotel lacks essential services such as air conditioning,
- the hygiene conditions of the accommodation are precarious – the beach is not practicable – the sea is dirty,
- presence, in accommodation facilities, of undeclared architectural barriers,
- cancellation or delay of the flight purchased as part of a tourist package and other air or naval inconvenience,
- lost or damaged baggage.
HOW TO GET REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE RUINED HOLIDAY?
To obtain reimbursement for the ruined holiday, a complaint must be presented by the tourist, to be promptly proposed, even during the journey, so that the organizer or his representative on the spot or the group leader, can remedy it, or within 10 days from the return.
The dispute can also take place subsequently, provided that it is made within one year of returning from the trip (for damages other than to the person) and three years for damages to the person (beyond which it will no longer be possible to submit the requested compensation).
However, if the non-fulfilment concerns the transport service (planes, trains, ships, etc.), the limitation period is 18 or 12 months depending on whether it is damage to people or things, respectively.
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